The Avengers won the 2013 Hugo for Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form. It had a pretty thumping victory at both stages.
It beat The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which I have seen, and The Cabin in the Woods, The Hunger Games and Looper, which I haven’t. IMDB users rate it 3rd and 8th film of the year on the two rankings. In both cases it is behind The Dark Knight Rises, which I’m really surprised to see came as low as eleventh in the Hugo nomination rankings. (Beasts of the Southern Wild, which won the Ray Bradbury Award, came twelfth.) From the long list I also saw and enjoyed Brave and Wreck-It Ralph. I didn’t vote in that Hugo category that year.
Despite the star-studded cast, just one actor who’d been in previous Hugo winners and one who had been in an Oscar-winning film. Samuel L. Jackson presides here as Nick Fury; in 1993 he was the scientist Arnold in Jurassic Park, and also the voice of Frozone in The Incredibles in 2004.
And Gwyneth Paltrow gets one scene here as Pepper Potts, having won an Oscar as Viola in Shakespeare in Love a decade ago.
This is a film about a bunch of superheroes, the Avengers, getting together and biffing Loki, the god of Asgard, who wants to take over the world. (Or destroy it, I got a little lost.) I think it looks great but I’m not terribly invested in the Marvel mythology, so I’m putting it quite a long way down my rankings, in 40th place out of 53, below The Princess Bride but above The Incredibles.
I had my fourth COVID jab yesterday morning and am feeling under the weather today, so I’ll be brief. The performances are good, but I actually found the script a bit disappointing. My heart lifted when I saw Joss Whedon’s name on the credits; surely we can expect the same crackling humour that he often delivered for Buffy? But there’s not a lot of it.
Thor: Have a care how you speak! Loki is beyond reason, but he is of Asgard and he is my brother!
Natasha Romanoff: He killed eighty people in two days.
Thor: He’s adopted.
The fight scenes are well choreographed and the effects are superb.
But basically it’s a film that is intended to set up and develop the Marvel mythos, and I’m just not terribly interested in that even though it does the job well.
Next up will be that year’s Oscar winner, Argo, the closest that the late great Roger Zelazny ever got to a cinematic award. (If you don’t know, I’ll explain…)