On Friday night we went and saw probably the biggest movie of the year, Marvel's superhero conglomerate movie, The Avengers. From the sum of it's previously introduced parts, I had pretty high expecations for this movie and although it didn't fail to reach these expectations, it didn't exceed them either. That's not a bad thing though, it's not often that high expectations are actually met, and overall it was still a great movie.
The real accomplishment of this movie is not the special effects, the overarching storyline, or even really the all-star cast (all of which we really have seen before). The biggest feat and accomplishment is how Joss Whedon, in writing and directing this movie, has almost perfectly balanced the plot to give a fair exposure and attention to all the 'major' characters.
It's something you don't notice till after the movie has finished, but if you look at list of cast/characters it's phenomenal: Ironman/Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans), Bruce Banner/Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Loki (Tom Hiddleston), and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). Even for the more mundane and otherwise forgettable characters like Black Widow and Hawkeye, plot devices (which fit really well into the story) are introduced that give these lesser characters attention and significance.
The plot seems to centre more on, unsurprisingly Tony Stark/Ironman, but surprisingly also Banner/Hulk. However, as mentioned before, overall it's fantastically balanced with the other characters.
The only thing I didn't quite buy was the recasting of Mark Ruffalo as Banner, as apparently things were not well between Edward Norton and Marvel. The character has now seen three actors in as many movies, and really I haven't 'bought' any of them. Mark Ruffalo portrayed a bit of a 'nothing' character for Banner, but luckily The Hulk was the real star, and a lot of the best moments of the movie involved him in some way.
It's definitely worth a watch, and although the 3D was good, I wouldn't say it's a necessity for watching this movie in the cinemas.