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Author Topic: I re-watched "Avengers" today...  (Read 1230 times)

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Offline BeorningTopic starter

I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« on: April 30, 2013, 11:38:47 AM »
... and you know what I realized? This movie's dumb.

I mean, sure, it's very nicely done effects-wise. There are some great pieces of dialogue, good character moments etc. The movie is certainly entertaining on many levels... but the plot itself? It's dumb.

The whole affair is that Loki strikes a deal with the Chitauri aliens: they will conquer the Earth for him and he will give them the Tesseract. For this to happen, he needs to get the Tesseract, create the portal-making machine and fire it up. Quite straight-forward. It leads straight from the opening skirmish with Loki to him opening the portal in New York.

Sooo... what was the point of him getting himself captured by SHIELD? Maybe I misunderstood something, but I got the impression that Loki actually wanted to get captured in Vienna. But, if so, what was his plan? What did he achieve? Sure, that plot diversion gave us the cool Helicarrier battle and all, but what was Loki's goal? He didn't achieve anything. He didn't set back the heroes in any way, his real plan didn't depend on being captured in any way... So why did this whole segment happen at all?

It's kind of annoying. I really want to like "Avengers" as a movie, but it's a bit hard. Plot-wise, this movie is quite bad. Couldn't the people behind this movie come up with something better...?

Offline Avis habilis

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2013, 11:45:14 AM »
But, if so, what was his plan? What did he achieve?

I've seen it suggested that the whole thing was a setup to get himself transported back to Asgard. I haven't seen Thor, so I don't know why he wouldn't have been able to just up & go there if he wanted to, but there it is.

Offline Inkidu

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2013, 12:05:07 PM »
Actually his plan worked like a charm, it's just you can't beat comic book tropes.

His plan was to disrupt and destroy the Avenger's cohesion and their base. Rousing success actually. The problem is that nothing was going to stop them from becoming the Avengers and kicking his ass. It's a foregone conclusion that's especially prevalent in comic books and manga. It's that whole assemble part really.

Also if Tony hadn't figured out New York they had no way of tracking any of the energy signatures anymore.

Offline Shjade

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2013, 12:10:26 PM »
Actually his plan worked like a charm, it's just you can't beat comic book tropes.

His plan was to disrupt and destroy the Avenger's cohesion and their base. Rousing success actually.

This. Loki got captured to do the classic "destroy them from the inside" maneuver, which he pulled off pretty well all things considered. Hulk hulked out on the good guys, Thor almost got pancaked, shiny big ship was pretty close to becoming a bunch of debris on crash-landing, etc.

As for why he wanted to do that, I suspect it was a combination of "he thought they might have a chance of stopping him if he didn't decimate them pre-emptively," "he wanted to fuck with Thor," and "he's Loki; he does this kind of crap for fun."

Offline Chris Brady

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2013, 12:13:02 PM »
It's a near direct copy of both the Marvel Ultimate and original (616 universe) Comic intro to the Avengers.  It's a story that's almost what?  Thirty years old?

And it's a COMIC BOOK MOVIE!  OF COURSE IT'S DUMB!  THEY ALL ARE!  But intelligent story writing isn't why you want it.  It's like Jurrasic Park, half the fun is the fight scenes, the other half are the explosions and special effects.

Offline Inkidu

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2013, 12:30:22 PM »
It's a near direct copy of both the Marvel Ultimate and original (616 universe) Comic intro to the Avengers.  It's a story that's almost what?  Thirty years old?

And it's a COMIC BOOK MOVIE!  OF COURSE IT'S DUMB!  THEY ALL ARE!  But intelligent story writing isn't why you want it.  It's like Jurrasic Park, half the fun is the fight scenes, the other half are the explosions and special effects.
In fact comic books aren't about intelligence and deep themes so much as they are about deep heroes. The one problem the big screen has is that you can't really covert the internal monologue of many of the heroes to the movies. They're modern day tragedies. It's all about seeing the hero and what he has to do, give up, or fail.

That is of course a solo-only thing, when two or more join up it's all about explosions and big fights. :D

Offline BeorningTopic starter

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2013, 12:32:20 PM »
It's a near direct copy of both the Marvel Ultimate and original (616 universe) Comic intro to the Avengers.  It's a story that's almost what?  Thirty years old?

Actually, it's not a copy of that old story at all. Yes, that old story involved Loki, too, but aside of that? Different stories.

Plus, I'm not sure we should set our standards for modern movies at the level of Silver Age comic books...

Quote
And it's a COMIC BOOK MOVIE!  OF COURSE IT'S DUMB!  THEY ALL ARE!  But intelligent story writing isn't why you want it.  It's like Jurrasic Park, half the fun is the fight scenes, the other half are the explosions and special effects.

Oh, no. I *abhor* the notion that a comic book movie can be stupid, because it concerns superheroes. Come on, it's like saying that sci-fi movies can be stupid and only the special effects count. That's the kind of thinking that gave us idiocy like Independence Day...

This. Loki got captured to do the classic "destroy them from the inside" maneuver, which he pulled off pretty well all things considered. Hulk hulked out on the good guys, Thor almost got pancaked, shiny big ship was pretty close to becoming a bunch of debris on crash-landing, etc.

As for why he wanted to do that, I suspect it was a combination of "he thought they might have a chance of stopping him if he didn't decimate them pre-emptively," "he wanted to fuck with Thor," and "he's Loki; he does this kind of crap for fun."

I don't know. I can buy he did this because he figured that SHIELD forces could stop the invading army. In such a case, yeah - he managed to cripple SHIELD. But he didn't manage to kill Thor, Hulk wandered off for... what, a few hours? And Tony figured out the portal's location without SHIELD's sensors.

And I don't buy the explanation that Loki did all this to mess with Thor. At the beginning of the story, he couldn't even have known that Thor would get involved. In fact, he couldn't have also known that Bruce Banner would be on Helicarrier - so the idea that he planned on Banner hulking out doesn't make sense...
« Last Edit: April 30, 2013, 12:39:03 PM by Beorning »

Offline Chris Brady

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2013, 12:38:32 PM »
Science Fiction films CAN be stupid.  They can be intelligent as well.

But Avengers?  It's not supposed to be 'Watchmen' which was a deconstruction of superhero tropes (even if 90% of the fanbase at the time didn't catch that.)

The source material is designed for ages 12 to 16.  There's only so much modification you can do without losing the sense of the source material.  The whole point of a comic book movie (outside of deconstructions) is FUN.

And Avengers IS fun.  There's no secret message, no morality play, you have bad guys being bad, you have good guys saving the day.  And that's escapism at it's best.

If you want a deeper message or a story that causes thought, the new After Earth movie looks like it could go there.  Oblivion by Tom Cruise looks good too, in a more 'What really happened' conspiracy story.

Thing is, you have to ask yourself 'What is it do I want in a movie?' and then figure out if say, The Avengers is it.

Offline BeorningTopic starter

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2013, 12:47:57 PM »
The source material is designed for ages 12 to 16.

Really? I'd say that no, it's not - today, the average comic book reader is much older. The audience of superhero books matured - so, superhero movies should mature a bit, too.

Quote
There's only so much modification you can do without losing the sense of the source material.  The whole point of a comic book movie (outside of deconstructions) is FUN.

Yeah, but a movie can be fun without being dumb.

Quote
And Avengers IS fun.  There's no secret message, no morality play, you have bad guys being bad, you have good guys saving the day.  And that's escapism at it's best.

I don't know. I have nothing against escapism - I love it, in fact. But there's nothing in the general idea of escapism that says the plots have to be paper-thin.

I mean, I read Song of Ice and Fire as escapism. It manages to be very entertaining *and* to have a good plot.

Offline Moraline

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2013, 01:06:56 PM »
Really? I'd say that no, it's not - today, the average comic book reader is much older. The audience of superhero books matured - so, superhero movies should mature a bit, too.

<snip>
Modern comics may be designed for a slightly older audience but having just read the entire Marvel Civil War series and all of it's crossover comics(something like 116 of them / years 2006-2007), I can say that it hasn't evolved that much.

The Avengers are still written for pre-teen and teens. They add in a few minor adult themes to tantalize and engage the college age reader but it's still simplistic fun with scarcely more then a page worth of dialogue and back story per comic.

The Avengers movie captured the spirit of the comics pretty well. Could it have been better? Maybe. However, compared to a lot of other movies, it wasn't bad.

Chris said it best when he said that there's a difference between the depth of story in an Avengers story then there is in a Watchers story.

In my opinion, the Avengers did an alright job. I enjoyed it as light easy entertainment. I'm not as big of a fan of the movie as some people but I enjoyed it for what it is.

Offline Shjade

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2013, 01:26:11 PM »
And I don't buy the explanation that Loki did all this to mess with Thor. At the beginning of the story, he couldn't even have known that Thor would get involved. In fact, he couldn't have also known that Bruce Banner would be on Helicarrier - so the idea that he planned on Banner hulking out doesn't make sense...

It may be hard to believe/seem like a plot hole, but Loki clearly indicates he has plans for Hulk in particular at several points. He pretty much lays this all out in explicit terms to Black Widow at one point, doesn't he?

Offline BeorningTopic starter

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2013, 01:30:08 PM »
Modern comics may be designed for a slightly older audience but having just read the entire Marvel Civil War series and all of it's crossover comics(something like 116 of them / years 2006-2007), I can say that it hasn't evolved that much.

I'd say that stuff like Civil War shouldn't be used as the measure stick for what superhero comics can be. It's a crossover, with a contrived plot designed to be flashy and to sell tie-ins. And it's pretty badly written, too.

My point is, there is a whole spectrum of option between hyper-intelligent stuff like Watchmen and dreck like Civil War. And it's not even a novel concept: let's take the X-Men comics from the late 70s and 80s, for instance. Lots of good characterization and complex plots... If you need modern example, then just look at DC's Justice League cartoon. That's how you do superheroes!

It may be hard to believe/seem like a plot hole, but Loki clearly indicates he has plans for Hulk in particular at several points. He pretty much lays this all out in explicit terms to Black Widow at one point, doesn't he?

Yes - and nothing much comes out of it. Banner hulks out - that was Loki's big plan?
« Last Edit: April 30, 2013, 01:33:21 PM by Beorning »

Offline Moraline

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2013, 02:01:45 PM »
Yes but we are talking about the Avengers movie.

Offline Inkidu

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2013, 02:05:05 PM »
It may be hard to believe/seem like a plot hole, but Loki clearly indicates he has plans for Hulk in particular at several points. He pretty much lays this all out in explicit terms to Black Widow at one point, doesn't he?
I thought it was so he could make him Hulk out and destroy the Helicarrier. Why waste your own resources when you can have the good guys do it for you?

Yeah, it's not as impacting when they all come through the better for having been torn apart, but sheesh that's like the oldest one in the book. It was the test of teamwork and all that. Yeah, it might be overused, but it's still around because it makes people feel good. :\

Offline BeorningTopic starter

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2013, 04:57:53 PM »
Yes but we are talking about the Avengers movie.

I'd risk saying that, even in Avengers comic books, there were more complex and interesting plots that in the movie. Are you familiar with early 90s Avengers and Bob Harras' saga of Proctor and the Gatherers, for example?

Even simple Avengers plot have been done better in the comics, too. Roger Stern's "Mansion Siege" story was, basically, about Avengers fighting a big group of villians. Still, it managed to be quite dramatic and engaging...

And if you don't want to discuss old comics, then I invite you to read the newest episodes of Avengers book by Jonathan Hickman. Good stuff!

Yeah, it's not as impacting when they all come through the better for having been torn apart, but sheesh that's like the oldest one in the book. It was the test of teamwork and all that.

I see your point, but I'd prefer if something more was actually done with it. If Loki's attack on the Helicarrier was supposed to cause a setback for the heroes, then the heroes should be *shown* as actually having been set back. They lost their SHIELD resources, sensors etc.? Then show them actually struggling to come up with a new plan. The team was weakened by losing Thor and Hulk? Give us some time to worry about it. Meanwhile, despite the lack of sensors, Iron Man locates Loki just by guessing - and Thor and Hulk come back without any trouble. It all makes the whole Helicarrier sequence feel pointless, just an excuse for some more fight scenes...

Offline Shjade

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2013, 05:04:07 PM »
I see your point, but I'd prefer if something more was actually done with it. If Loki's attack on the Helicarrier was supposed to cause a setback for the heroes, then the heroes should be *shown* as actually having been set back. They lost their SHIELD resources, sensors etc.? Then show them actually struggling to come up with a new plan. The team was weakened by losing Thor and Hulk? Give us some time to worry about it. Meanwhile, despite the lack of sensors, Iron Man locates Loki just by guessing - and Thor and Hulk come back without any trouble. It all makes the whole Helicarrier sequence feel pointless, just an excuse for some more fight scenes...

They might have had time to do that in, say, a series. Being a movie, they had a limited amount of time with which to work. Certainly not enough for an entire second "comeback" arc before getting to the finale.

Loki had a plan that, in essence, worked as intended. It ultimately failed because he (being an evil, egomaniacal dick) underestimated his opposition: he didn't think Banner would be able to control his Hulk side, thought Stark wasn't smart (or perhaps not heroic/interested) enough to track him down without the SHIELD gadgetry, probably expected Thor to decide his human allies weren't that useful after all and go try to do his own thing alone, etc.

His plan's mechanics were solid. He simply didn't make accurate predictions about how the Avengers would respond to the results.

Online Neysha

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #16 on: May 03, 2013, 06:53:13 PM »
It seemed fairly obvious that Loki's plan to get captured by SHIELD was to eliminate SHIELD and any forces that they could've arrayed to face his army.

And it would've worked... buuuuut the heroes were just better.

Offline MercyfulFate

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #17 on: May 08, 2013, 01:49:52 PM »
It seemed fairly obvious that Loki's plan to get captured by SHIELD was to eliminate SHIELD and any forces that they could've arrayed to face his army.

And it would've worked... buuuuut the heroes were just better.

Yeah, pretty much.

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2013, 09:51:14 AM »
It seemed fairly obvious that Loki's plan to get captured by SHIELD was to eliminate SHIELD and any forces that they could've arrayed to face his army.

And it would've worked... buuuuut the heroes were just better.  If it wasn't for those meddling kids and their dog Hulk!

Fixed!

Offline Phaia

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2013, 07:06:30 PM »
And I don't buy the explanation that Loki did all this to mess with Thor. At the beginning of the story, he couldn't even have known that Thor would get involved. In fact, he couldn't have also known that Bruce Banner would be on Helicarrier - so the idea that he planned on Banner hulking out doesn't make sense...

not shown scene from the Avenger's

Loki: So Hawkeye is it what would Fury and SHEILD do next since they have lost the tesseract
Hawkeye: well sir they would activate several proticals including the Avengers.
Loki: Tell me of these 'Avegners'
Hawkeye: well there is Dr banner also knonw as the Hulk, Captian America, Iron man....

Saying that Loki couldnt know anything about the Hulk means that Hawkeye who put togther the strike team didnt know anything either.
Now He may not have planned on Thor being still...enrage the Hulk...while strike team takes down Helicarrier...destroy Ironman, Captian America, SHEILD while grining all the way sounds like a decent plan to me.
Thor messed that up!

Phaia

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #20 on: May 12, 2013, 11:57:42 PM »

Offline Inkidu

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #21 on: May 13, 2013, 12:16:30 AM »
I'm not spoilering this because it's a thread about re-watching the Avengers.


I figured he had. There's a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment in the Avengers  where a newspaper prints something about his cello-player love interest.

Offline Chris Brady

Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #22 on: May 13, 2013, 01:17:59 AM »
Two clues.  First, Fury said that the med team 'called it', but we don't see anything of the sort.  Second, the cards.  Which were in Coulson's locker.  Which, we can assume (and perhaps incorrectly) that Coulson gave Fury the key/code to.

Also, 'Life Model Decoys', which Stark makes mention to Coulson when trying to get out of meeting him?  You don't think they're a thing?  Besides, it's been proven that Nick Fury is Marvel's Batman.  He's got a plan for EVERY contingency.\

For the record, I WANT TO SEE THAT SHOW!

Offline Ephiral

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #23 on: May 13, 2013, 02:13:02 AM »
I caught the LMD hint but not the bit about the cards being elsewhere, and I called it coming out of the theatre. Why? Off-camera "death". Comic book movie. And, let's face it, Fury is exactly that much of a dick.

What I really want to see is the conversation between... pretty much any of the Avengers, particularly Banner or Stark, and Fury when they find out just how he manipulated them.

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Re: I re-watched "Avengers" today...
« Reply #24 on: May 13, 2013, 06:55:58 AM »
I caught the LMD hint but not the bit about the cards being elsewhere, and I called it coming out of the theatre. Why? Off-camera "death". Comic book movie. And, let's face it, Fury is exactly that much of a dick.

In comics, nobody is dead until they try to bring them back and fail.

I mean - just look at Jean Grey!