Marvel continues its cinematic dominance with their latest release, “The Avengers: Age of Ultron”. The film once again teams Iron Man (Robert Downey JR.), Captain America (Chris Evans), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Black Window , (Scarlett Johannson), and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), as the deal with the fall of S.H.I.E.L.D. after the events of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”.
The film opens with a visually amazing action sequence where the heroes raid a Hydra base as they attempt to retrieve Loki’s spear from the evil organization that is bent on world domination.
While researching the spoils of their raid, a pair of enhanced siblings, (Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olson), have managed to exert their influence on one of the team which in turn leads to a bold experiment to create an ultimate guardian of humanity named Ultron who will protect the Earth from all manner of enemies from beyond.
Things do not go as planned s unbeknownst to the Avengers, the artificial A.I. they recovered from Hydra soon builds an army and declares an all-out war on the Avengers and eventually all of humanity.
Tasked with stopping a clever enemy who can switch his conscious to any number of bodies the world over, Ultron (James Spader) leads the team on a deadly game of cat and mouse with the fate of the human race hanging in the balance.
The film is darker and bolder than many of the previous Marvel films but still maintains plenty of humor to lighten the tension. The supporting cast is very good, especially Samuel L. Jackson who steals the scenes whenever he appears.
There were a few sub plots and romantic themes that seemed a bit muddled and some aspects of the story were not fully developed and came to conclusions fairly abruptly, but the film is a shining triumph despite the issues.
The leads work very well with one another though some characters such as Thor were given storylines that really never developed and the same goes for some of the questions left unanswered since the fall of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The visual FX were amazing as seeing it in IMAX 3D really made the action leap off the screen. Director Josh Wheedon paces the film well despite a few instances where things drag along.
The action sequences are the bread and butter of the film and they are frequent and truly spectacular to behold.
Spader does a great job bringing a depth to Ultron which helps him avoid being the stock super villain. He mixes the soul of a poet and scholar with the tantrums of a child which makes him a compelling, captivating, and downright deadly opponent.
The newer characters do well and hopefully we will see them developed more in “Avengers: Infinity War” which is currently in the early stages of development.
For now, Wheedon, Marvel, and the talented cast have created an epic summer action film which is everything you would expect from a super hero movie and more.
4 stars out of 5.