The incredible amounts of hype and promotion and the subsequent ‘rave reviews’ for The Avengers, the 2012 American superhero film, based on the Marvel Comic, is really an indicator of the sub-standard films people are ready to label ‘intelligent’ these days. Joss Whedon’s blockbuster follows the efforts of a group of superheroes(which include Hulk, Thor and Iron Man) to save the world from an impending invasion by the otherworldly forces of Loki, who happens to be Thor’s brother. This group of superheroes is quite dysfunctional, and much of the film shows the struggle behind uniting this distinct group.
Loki, the villain in this film is Thor’s brother, who controls the Tesseract, a pulsing cube of energy that opens a gateway to the universe. Using the Tesseract, Loki intends to crush Earth into submission with an army of Chitauri,(basically, an army of alien mercenaries). Nick Fury of S.H.I.E.L.D. assembles the Avengers with the purpose of confronting Loki’s unstoppable army, but this highly dysfunctional group of superheroes must first learn how to achieve teamwork.
I don’t really need to describe this film much further as you can probably see where it’s going; Nick Fury assembles Avengers because of a psychotic Asgardian’s desire for revenge on humanity- the Avengers don’t like each other so much because of their conflicting egos-somehow the Avenger’s unite and take on Loki’s army, so on and so forth.
These action-flicks which pretend to be serious are pretty much the same; there are heroes, whose character’s are probed over lightly, there are villains who are villanised further and then towards the climax of the film there is a cascading of special-effects intended to overwhelm the viewer and make them forget how stupid the film really is.
So, this film is bad and that much is obvious. But the really worrying problem is that people have been sucked in by the hype or actually thought the film was intelligent.
The incredible box-office success of The Avengers, which has seen it become the third highest-grossing film of all time shows us that people are starting to identify with the spiritual emptiness and cynicism that The Avengers is composed of.