Avengers: Infinity War. It was mildly distracting to see the movie’s first major battle taking place in my downtown Atlanta neighborhood, just blocks away. Is this how New Yorkers feel all the time? Thanos is a great villain. Maybe knowing they’d have him around later let them invest more and give him some motivation beyond destruction? I like the several scenes where loved ones are torn between hard choices – Vision and Scarlet Witch, Thanos and Gamorra, Starlord and Gamorra, etc.. My main frustration with the movie was the big Wakanda scenes. We are convinced this is the most technologically advanced civilization on the planet, and they are fighting a crucial battle… with infantry, hand-to-hand? It’s a shame. They could have done something more interesting. The giant roto-tiller machines were cool, though.
The Avengers. The basic plot mechanics are a bit tired, but I am not ashamed to admit how satisfying it is to see the whole gang together after seeing others in the Marvel series. A couple neat camera moments (Cap in the rearview and a POV shot that flips along with the car it’s inside of). Nothing quite like the joy/terror of Hulk being Hulk. I really wish Renner had more to work with.
Zodiac. A serial killer is the impetus, but the theme is obsession. So good. If only all directors could use their minutes this well.
Iron Man 3. I liked it more than Iron Man 2, maybe not as much as the original Iron Man, though I don’t remember it well at this point. This was definitely funnier than the first sequel, with some Kiss Kiss Bang Bang-ish genre awareness and biting humor. The villains, though, were a letdown, and the silly action spectaculars were kind of a mess. And yeah, it is kind of a feature-length damnation of wearable computing.
Iron Man 2. It’s really pretty when things are blowing up. Admittedly, it’s been a while since I’ve seen a movie with a lot of ‘splosions, so I’m behind on the state of the art. Lots of eye candy, though. The main villain face-offs felt really low-stakes and awkwardly paced. Really erratic writing. I felt like the first one was funnier? Captain America is still my favorite of the few Avengers movies I’ve seen.
Sherlock Holmes. Mediocre. Too long. Seems to exist only to make way for a sequel. It’s frustrating to see so many actors I like stuck in a weak movie.
Haven’t seen the movie and don’t plan to, but I like Roger Ebert’s assessment here: “Some superheroes speak in a kind of heightened, semi-formal prose, as if dictating to Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations… ‘Iron Man’ doesn’t seem to know how seriously most superhero movies take themselves.“