What makes a movie great?
Being able to re-watch it over and over?
The feeling you get when you remember the first time you watched it?
Or maybe just the simple fact you like the actor or character.
I’m not here to try and change your mind. Everyone has a favorite movie and everyone has their reasons why.
What I’m here to tell you though is The Avengers may just be the greatest superhero movie achievement ever and here’s why.
I’m old enough to have seen Superman in the theater, so I like to think I know what I’m talking about. And I’m talking about the Christopher Reeve movie, that had one of the greatest filmed scenes of all time, not the criminally destructive Man Of Steel.
Lois Lane hangs from a dangling helicopter high above the city. Clark Kent runs to the phone booth to change, not quite what he thought. So as Lois screams, Clark races into an ally, rips open his shirt as the John Williams score blasts triumphant. Superman races to catch her but not before being polite to someone who mentions, “Yo , Jim. That’s a bad outfit.”
“Excuse me. ” He says and flies up to rescue Lois just in time, then, smiles and catches the falling helicopter as people cheer below and the score reaches its highest crescendo.
If that scene doesn’t give you goosebumps then let me ask you, when did you sell your soul?
I also believe Dark Knight is one of the greatest achievements. The acting, the scenery, the music all come together to make one fantastic movie.
I realize a lot of people, especially my nerd brethren, will have problems with that paragraph and to them I say, I don’t care.
Dark Knight makes you believe it’s actually possible for a man to dress as a bat and fight crime. It makes you believe a painted face psychotic killer could run wild in a city. That’s an achievement no matter how you define it.
Now, why do I think Avengers is better then those?
Marvel and Josh Whedon brought together more superheros to one two hour film that a Saturday morning cartoon.
Not only that, but they also brought together some of the best actors of our generation. When you look back, there is no one who could be a better Loki. No one could be a better Tony Stark. No one could be a better Nick Fury.
Meanwhile, Alan Silvestri created some of the best heroic themes for the movie since John Williams and Superman.
But even all that pales in comparison to Joss Whedon’s dialogue. He makes you care about these heroes. He makes them seem real without saying corny, cliche lines most superhero movies fall prey to. Heck, you even believe a guy who shoots view and arrows can stand toe to toe with Captain America.
(There’s actually a rumor that Joss Whedon had a plan to show you how Hawkeye and certain arrows and could actually take out the entire team)
I look back at the Star Trek movies and even with only seven actors, most barley get screen time, but with The Avengers, each hero has their time. While Robert Downy Jr. May seem to dominate the screen, he gives others a chance to shine, as they do to their fellow actors.
Earlier I mentioned the great Superman helicopter scene. With Avengers, we have a one camera shot that follows Black Widow, to Iron Man, to Captain America to Thor and Hulk.
In one great shot we get the show off this battle and how each hero is fighting it.
These actors like each other and it’s fully apparent. They share the screen, not try to out do each other, which is the only reason I have a problem with saying Micheal Keaton’s Batman isn’t on this list.
Face it. If you don’t like Jack Nicholson, you won’t like that movie.
The Avengers is a monumental achievement in superhero movies. It’s a Saturday morning cartoon come to life. It can make you feel like a kid again.
It’s the equivalent of the graphic novel “The Dark Knight Returns”. It’s a comic book media you don’t have to feel strange about liking. It appeals to everyone, even non comic book fans. Heck, my wife has only read one comic in her life and will watch The Avengers everyone its on.
So, while realizing everyone has a favorite superhero movie and have their own reasons why, but for me, The Avengers is on top and always will be.
Mainly because I just don’t have faith in Batman vs. Superman. 😉