The waves of geek delight and ecstasy over The Avengers are detectable even to me, even in Berlin. I can feel it on Twitter…everywhere. Deadline‘s Nikki Finke reports that last night’s tally (it’s 7:39 am Saturday in Berlin now) is “thought to be $70 million (including $18.1 million from midnight) and $160 million-plus through Sunday.”
I don’t begrudge anyone their fun or their profit. It’s always a good or at least a passable thing when a film is hugely popular. Infectious vitality and all that. But at the same time I feel a bit lonely, cut off…surely there are HE readers who were only “shruggingly okay” with it? People who just sat there and went “okay, whatever, fine…I don’t hate it or anything….I guess doesn’t suck”? Who agreed with MCN’s David Poland that “it’s not actually a really good, memorable summer Movie Movie”? Or with Peter Keough‘s Boston Pheonix view that “what the Avengers really need is something to avenge, some compelling emotion or commitment; rallying the troops with blood-stained collectible trading cards doesn’t cut it.”
Or who even agreed with my view that “it’s corporate CG piss in a gleaming silver bucket”?
How high would be the Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic numbers be if critics didn’t feel an instinct to go easy and go along with the mob? We all know this mentality sometimes takes hold. Better to join ’em and give it a shoulder-shrugging pass than buck the tide…right?
“Of the star-studded cast, only Mark Ruffalo (playing Bruce Banner) and Robert Downey Jr. (as Iron Man) bring any personality to the place-holder dialogue,” writes Chicago Reader critic Ben Sachs. “Overlong, monotonous, violent, and simple-minded, this is like one of those ‘World’s Biggest Gang Bang’ videos, except that no one onscreen appears to be enjoying himself.”