Robert Downey Jr. imbues Tony Stark with the same wise-cracking, come-backing, antics that made fans love Iron Man to begin with. Downey’s brilliant performance and presence, steals the show, as did the fact that his role in the movie was slightly larger than the slightly less popular characters.
Despite Downey’s prodigious importance to the movie however, the rest of the cast was no less talented.
Captain America, Thor, Nick Fury, Hawkeye, Loki, Hulk and Black Widow all contribute greatly in their own ways and prove to be instrumental as the thread that holds together the tapestry of dialogue and onscreen chemistry.
You will, however, be somewhat disappointed as far as authenticity if you are a die-hard fan. Johansson’s acting is terrific as Natalia Romanova or, “Black Widow,” but she makes no attempt to pull off a Russian accent and throughout the film she is referred to as, “Romanov,” the male equivalent of the character’s surname.
The film’s dialogue also occasionally draws on plot points from previous Marvel films, which makes it hard to fully watch if you missed “Thor” earlier this season or any others along the way.
The characters are of limited depth in the film, going not far past skin-deep, which is understandable in that their are several characters which they have to consolidate into one feature film.
The casting of apparently mild mannered, average sized, every-man, Mark Ruffalo was a far better decision than Ed Norton or even Eric Bana, who stands more than six foot two and traditionally plays soldiers and gladiators, thereby downsizing the metaphor represented by the Hulk.
Loki was cast well, but for a villain, even an egotistical sociopath; he was too accessible. Loki made his indifference to capture obvious and indisputable, which seemed more like writing in an easy way out, than choosing thought out actions for a character.
Stan Lee has his usual onscreen cameo, which elicited a good-humored groan from the audience as if to say, “of course.”
Initially one might find apprehension when viewing critic ratings versus those of regular viewers, this much can be said though, the film was not a ten out of ten for writing, the effects did not outdo Avatar, the characters were not better than in previous performances, there was nothing mind-blowing or profound and the movie had its little flaws and errors; but, all-in-all, it is a fun movie to watch, it is very viewer friendly and digestible, viewers will not walk away disappointed nor will they feel as if they are unable to watch the movie again if they need a way to pass the time.
The movie does well for its genre, it is not “The Godfather,” it is not “Citizen Kane.” If the audience or critic goes to the theatre expecting the next AFI number one film, then they are stupid going to be disappointed. If, on the other hand, one were to go in expecting an action movie that does not take itself too seriously, without too much gore or pretense, it would prove to be just what they wanted.
The effects are not over the top, there are no giant blue Native Americans, but they are believable and used selectively enough to not overdo them.
This movie will leave the viewer with a desire to break something, build something, blow something up or just hulk and destroy. Or eat pizza, you know, whatever you are into doing on a Saturday night.