Age of Ultron has hit the cinemas and people are naturally going crazy for it. Whether it’s the high-octane action, the funny writing, the great acting or just being able to see your favourite characters hang out in a room together, there are many reasons to enjoy this movie. That’s why I’m going to be a massive contrarian and write about what I didn’t like about the film, thus drawing ire and hate from the masses. Naturally, spoilers abound for the film so watch out.
1. Vision shouldn’t have been advertised
I like Vision so when I found out he was going to show up, I got excited. But when he did appear, I couldn’t help but think how hyped I would have been if I didn’t know. His appearance was clearly presented as a surprise to the audience; a sudden new character born from Tony’s butler A.I. Jarvis to give them an advantage over Ultron. But instead of being surprised, the audience is just like “Oh here he is. I was wondering when he was going to show up.” You could argue it was to help with advertising the movie but… it’s an Avengers sequel. People were going to see it, with or without Vision. It’s a little thing but seeing a character you weren’t expecting appear on the big screen is a greater memory than being told that a character you weren’t expecting will appear on the big screen.
2. The Natasha/Bruce romance kind of came out of nowhere
There’s technically nothing wrong with the romance between these two characters. I mean, it’s certainly unique. I can’t recall a romantic relationship between these two characters ever being explored in the comics or other media. But it feels like it was very spur of the moment; like the writers came up with it during the writing process and loved it so much that they put it in despite the lack of build-up. In the last movie, Natasha was the one sent to find and bring Bruce to S.H.I.E.L.D so he could join the Avengers but is that enough foundation for a romance to start up? It didn’t seem like it.
3. Where DID Nick Fury get that Helicarrier?
At this point, Nick Fury is considered dead, with only a select few knowing that he’s still alive. He’s no longer in charge of S.H.I.E.L.D and seems to be pretty much bumming around, occasionally popping in to inspire the heroes. So where did he find that Helicarrier for the finale? S.H.I.E.L.D was kind of left in a funny place after the events of The Winter Soldier; they still had some good tech afterwards but a Helicarrier?And even if they did have it, how did Fury get it? Unless Fury himself kept one stowed away somewhere but how do you hide something like that? This is a point that’s left a lot of people very confused and for a good reason.
4. Quicksilver’s death was kind of pointless
While the Quicksilver of Days of Future Past was ten times better, I didn’t mind this film’s iteration of the character. He was likable enough and his acting was good. So why did he die? True, he went out like a hero (which is the best way to go out) but his death felt like a contractual obligation, as if the writers were told that they had to kill off at least one of the main heroes so they picked the one that didn’t have his own movie franchise and hadn’t been around long enough to cause too much anger. It’s possible that his death will greatly affect Scarlet Witch in the future movies but if that was the reason, it’s a pretty poor one. Creating a character for the sole purpose of killing them in order to affect another means that the character isn’t a character; they’re a prop. And that’s insulting to both the character and their fans.
5. Ultron didn’t feel like Ultron
This is going to get me so much hate. James Spader was brilliant. I loved his performance, I enjoyed Ultron’s presence and he had some great lines… but he didn’t feel like Ultron to me. Ultron is a cold, calculating machine. He isn’t effected or dictated by emotions because he has none. He tries to wipe out the human race because he genuinely believes that to be the best course of action for world peace (which is what he was programmed for.) The Ultron in this movie does have emotions – he has a sense of humour, takes joy in dicking about with the Avengers, gets angry when compared to Tony, makes eloquent speeches; he even has a more human face as opposed to the blank, unmoving stare he has in the comics. It didn’t feel like he was trying to wipe out humanity out of a warped sense of following his program but because he was a supervillain and that’s what supervillains do. Granted, a soulless Ultron that was a direct lift from the comics probably wouldn’t have been as fun to watch for the general audience or hold a movie that runs over two hours, but it meant that I didn’t feel like I was watching Age of Ultron; it was Age of some other Ultron.
6. It felt like filler
What was so great about the first Avengers film was that it was a culmination of all the Marvel films that came before it. It was the result of all that build-up while at the same time setting the stage for future events. This film, though, wasn’t like that. It was more of its own standalone thing, which is a good thing in a sense since it means you don’t need to watch five other films to enjoy it, but it didn’t have the ‘grand finale’ feel of the first Avengers. Instead, it ends up joining all the other films as just more build-up for the Infinity War; it’s just a filler arc to keep us entertained until we get to the big one. By the time Thanos does show up, though, I’ll probably be less “Oh my God, he’s here! We’re all doomed” and more “About freaking time. What kept you? Was traffic bad?” With some rewriting, Age of Ultron could probably have been a TV movie or even a TV series and have the same effect. It’s not the final chapter of Phase 2. It’s that awkward bit before a mid-season hiatus that tries to be grander than it really is.