I don’t remember the last time I was as excited for a film as I am for The Avengers: Age of Ultron, but much like the way a mother would worry about her second child, I have a few concerns about this mega-sequel. Don’t get me wrong, this film is going to make a silly amount of money, and it’s almost definitely going to have some incredible action sequences, so to clarify when I use the word ‘fail’, I mean creatively, not financially. Without anymore chat, here are a few reasons I’m starting to get a little bit concerned.
1 – Intelligence?
Artificial intelligence is an interesting and meaty topic, that has in no way been fully explored. The thing is, it’s been explored a lot since the last Avengers film. Transcendence, Her, Ex Machina and Chappie (among other smaller releases) have all explored AI, and if you’re anything like me you’ll have seen all of these. I’m not saying that there’s nothing left for Age of Ultron to explore, but had this been the first film about the subject for a few years, some of the themes might have been more effective, and feel less familiar.
2 – Expectations
As I said in the introduction, I can’t remember ever wanting to see a film more than I want to see Age of Ultron, and I’m by no means alone on feeling like this. The last film I can remember having this much talk about it before release was Interstellar, and look what happened there. Despite the fact that most people liked it, and some people (myself included) thought it was brilliant, all you heard about it after it was released was ‘this is the worst Christopher Nolan film’ and ‘that was disappointing’. For some people, unless Age of Ultron is the best film ever made, a lot of people won’t be satisfied.
3 – Quick, Witch character is that?
If you’re like me, you can already name all of the characters in this film, and give a basic description of their powers and what role they’re likely to play in the story. If I ask anyone else in my family who they are, they’ll probably ask when the film’s coming out, and if there’s a trailer they can watch. Most of the people who are going to watch this film have no idea who Scarlet Witch or The Vision are. A lot of people who are going to watch this film probably couldn’t tell you the name of every Avenger from the first film, let alone characters like Nick Fury and Maria Hill, so introducing so many new characters in one go is going to cause some people problems.
4 – A lot of Se-quell-ing to be done
Most sequels do quite well at continuing the story from the previous film, but the further through a franchise you get, the harder this becomes. The Marvel cinematic universe is now ten films in, with Age of Ultron being the eleventh installment, which is a lot more than most franchises. With standalone films this isn’t such a big deal, as you’re narrowing the scope of the story, but this film is a direct sequel to The Avengers, Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, as well as possibly having some connection to Guardians of the Galaxy. That’s a minimum of four films that Age of Ultron needs to continue on from, almost all of which are a sequel in their own right. On top of that, it needs to set up the next batch of Marvel films, which in just a few years is going to almost double the number of films in the Marvel franchise. That’s a lot of work for one film.
5 – Scene too much?
There are a lot of people who promise not to watch a trailer when it comes out, but within fifteen minutes they’ve seen it three times. They’re the same people who thought the first two trailers for Age of Ultron were underwhelming, and wanted more. Well, we got more, and now those same people again are saying that they’ve seen too much. Personally, I don’t think the trailers have given too much away, and I’m sure something mind-blowing has been saved for the actual film, but isn’t that then another problem? As fans, we talk a lot about which characters are capable of what, how awesome this character is in the comics, who we think is going to die and what post-credit scene we’re going to be treated to. With all these questions left unanswered, people still think we’ve been shown too much. Thinking about it, maybe this one’s a problem with the fans, and not the film…
Don’t get me wrong, I’m seeing Age of Ultron multiple times, and I have faith in the creative team both in front of and behind the camera, but like with anything you love, I’m worried about it. Do you share my feelings, or do you think this is going to be the greatest event in cinematic history? Share you thoughts in the comments.
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