|megpie71 (megpie71) wrote,|
@ 2012-05-17 12:18:00
Movie Review: The Avengers
Okay, first things first - this is the first movie I've actually watched in the cinema in over two years. I don't go to the cinema much, mainly because I'm not fond of crowds, and also because I don't like having my eardrums hammered six inches into my skull by the volume the movie is inevitably played at. However, my partner had, by this time, seen the Avengers movie twice, and I'd seen enough rave reviews of the trailers on various US sites (we got it here in Australia about a week or two before the folks in the US... I suspect we were being used as a test case) to suspect it was going to be a movie I'd enjoy. I wasn't wrong there.
(Oh, and can I just offer a brief thumbs-up to the Rockingham United cinema complex - very nice little place, although the seats were a bit snug around the hips. It was a bit quiet on Sunday morning when we went there, but that was all to the good, as far as I was concerned).
The star of the movie, overall, was Tom Hiddlestone as Loki. The Loki they've written here is a believable deity of chaos, of destruction, of discord. He gets gleeful when people are running in fear and terror. He loves watching as arguments go on. His personal effects heighten the levels of discord and anger around them, and tip things toward the chaotic end of the spectrum. This is a very believable deity of chaos, someone to be genuinely afraid of. His (very genuine) belief that humans have a deep-seated need to be ruled and controlled (Mr Wheedon, have you been reading that bit in Pratchett where Vimes mentions the main human design flaw as being the bit where we bend at the knee?) and his dislike of humans can be seen as coming from the same place as the sort of deep-seated racism that drives groups like white supremacists and anti-Semitic groups - here are these... creatures, who look so much like his own people, and who act as though they're equal, but they AREN'T. There's an almost visceral revulsion involved at times - it shows up in his interrogation scene with the Black Widow.
What Loki isn't (and I realise I'm treading into Unpopular Fandom Opinion territory here) is a woobie. Loki will not be fixed by a hug and a blankie, and a few cuddles. There is something deeply broken in this guy, possibly down at the level of species difference - his need to conquer, to dominate, to create havoc and chaos is built into him almost at the genetic level. It may be part of his Asgardian make-up, something which is the primal drive behind his existence (rather like Thor's apparent drive to Make Heroic Speeches in somewhat archaic language). Let's not forget: Loki isn't human, no matter how much he looks like one on the outside.
One of the other interesting things I liked about this is that they downplayed the "trickster" side of Loki's nature as a god of chaos. Instead, the "trickster" figure is Tony Stark - and Tony Stark is the trickster in this film right down to the bone. He isn't on any particular side (except his own). He's well aware that he's smarter than most of the other kids (and he really rubs it in with Captain America in particular, but also with Thor - I'd have to look at the Iron Man movies to see whether there wasn't some kind of background issue there) and he plays up this intelligence, hacking into SHIELD's databases, needling everyone to try and get his bit in because he really doesn't like what's going on and he doesn't want to have to be there. The scene toward the end where he realises what Loki is going to be doing by basically going "well, what would I do in the situation" is just a classic.