It would have been easy for Avengers: Age of Ultron – the sequel to Marvel’s franchise mega-hit Avengers Assemble – to rest on its laurels. Thankfully, Avengers 2.0 improves on its predecessor on many fronts even if it doesn’t fully recapture the magic of the 2012 endeavour.
Whereas it took a little while for Avengers Assemble to get going, the opposite is true for the sequel. We begin with a Bond-esque opening skirmish between our heroes and HYDRA cronies that ends with the recovery of Loki’s scepter and a party to remember. But when Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) attempt to use the power of the scepter to jumpstart a peacekeeping program, the inadvertent result is Ultron (James Spader), a highly intelligent robot hell-bent on human extinction. Making matters worse, Ultron joins forces with powerful Maximoff twins Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen).
There is a great disparity between the posters and the trailers for Avengers: Age of Ultron.
In the build-up to today’s big reveal Marvel had released a number of bland and lazy character posters featuring each of our principal heroes in a standard hero pose set against a boring backdrop filled with Ultron drones. There’s also a one-sheet with all the Avengers that’s spent far too many hours in Adobe Photoshop:
Thankfully the trailers for Avengers: Age of Ultron have been anything but bland and lazy, and the third and supposedly (but probably not) final clip that was unveiled earlier today is no different.
After the billion dollar successes of both Avengers Assemble and Iron Man 3, Marvel’s ‘Phase Two’ continues with the highly anticipated Thor: The Dark World. With Game of Thrones director Alan Taylor replacing Kenneth Branagh at the helm, the sequel serves up the thrills as well as the laughs in what is an enjoyable superhero outing.
Much like Branagh’s franchise opener, The Dark World begins with Anthony Hopkins’ Odin narrating a prologue before we catch up with Thor (Chris Hemsworth), who’s been busy on cosmic peacekeeping duty post-Avengers. When an ancient race led by the vengeful Malekith (Christopher Eccleston) resurfaces on the hunt for a powerful weapon that could destroy the universe, Thor must ally with the mischievous Loki (Tom Hiddleston) if he is to save the Nine Realms.
The summer of 2013 may be coming to a close, but there are still a number of highly anticipated blockbusters due for release this year. One title sure to be on many a filmlover’s watchlist is Thor: The Dark World (2013). Directed by Alan Taylor, the man behind the camera on numerous episodes of HBO’s Game of Thrones, the sequel marks the second instalment of Marvel’s ‘Phase 2’ after Iron Man 3 (2013) took the box office by storm earlier this year. Some spoilerific footage was shown to lucky fans at the recent Comic-Con convention and a new poster was released last week, but now we have our best look yet with a revealing two-minute plus trailer.
With Shane Black’s Iron Man 3 released in UK cinemas nationwide from this Thursday (my full review can be read at Cine-Vue here), now seems the perfect time for Marvel to drop the first trailer for their second Phase Two feature, Game of Thrones director Alan Taylor’s Thor: The Dark World (2013). Due for release on this side of the pond in late October, we pick the story up with Chris Hemsworth’s thunder god back in Asgard after the events of Avengers Assemble. However, it’s not long before Thor’s beloved Earth – and plucky human love interest Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) – to come under threat from a new intergalactic force, led by the vengeful Dark Elf Malekith (Christopher Eccleston).
Although Snow White and the Huntsman is not the first depiction of the well-known fairy-tale Princess this year – that honour went to the light-hearted Mirror Mirror – it’s safe to say that it’s the version many were more interested in watching, and with good reason; it boasts an excellent cast – including Oscar-winner Charlize Theron, Chris ‘Thor’ Hemsworth, and Twilight star Kristen Stewart – an acclaimed video game commercial director in Rupert Sanders (in his feature-film debut), and the impressive trailers only broadened its appeal. It’s surprising then, that this darker take on Snow White is far from the epic re-imagining it looked so set on delivering.
Read the rest of this review on Yin & Yang here.
Have you ever been watching a film and felt that you’ve seen parts of it before? It’s a problem that horror films in particular seem to have run into of late. Well good news horror fans; it’s a problem that the makers of Cabin in the Woods are well aware of. Penned by Joss Whedon – aka the director of that small film called Avengers Assemble – and directed by Drew Goodard, this latest addition to the genre revels in turning those well known clichés upside down, and is easily the best horror film of the year for it.
Read the rest of this review on Yin & Yang here.