I was incredibly hyped to watch the second part of the Avengers series but sadly, I was really underwhelmed. Don't get me wrong, the movie was great and I liked it well enough, but it was just not as good as it could have been, by my opinion.
Joss Whedon is a great director and I have read is interviews where he said that he had to fight Marvel tooth and nail during the movie's production, so I don't really attribute much bad to him. Still, the movie was made and it came out as it came out and all I can do is to wait for the Director's Cut.
Okay, so what I found to be good enough: the actors are still incredible and fortunately I have gotten more from characters I love, like Bruce Banner and Steve Rogers. Hulk and Thor are my most favorite characters in the Marvel Universe and even though I do not agree with the sci-fi path they have taken with Thor, those two are still great in he Cinematic Universe, and Age of Ultron was no exception. The moments that I can still remember clearly both from the first and second movies were scenes with these two.
The action scenes were brilliantly directed as always, the cinematography was incredible and every character has gotten their fair share of screen time. As such, it was a well balanced movie, character-wise.
Now comes the bad.
Ultron, in the comics, is not really a threat to me, I mean not enough for an Avengers team up. I have read the comics and I understand that he is dangerous but I have always seen him as a controller, someone who will play puppets almost like Brainiac in the DC Universe. I have read the comics, watched the cartoons and I have never really saw him to be that much of a threat. Christian Slater was an incredible voice for him but the whole character just turned into a clown. It was really entertaining to watch him but the only thing that came to my mind was that this was not Ultron. Me and my friends usually call him Loki-bot or Tony-bot but not Ultron. He is menacing and artificial so he's emotionless, more like a Terminator that anything.
This Ultron however was the v2 for Loki but in a robot body. He was an entertaining villain but he just wasn't the Ultron I hoped to see.
I loved the Vision as well but I think he came a bit too late for me to care. He was awesome, but just not enough. And him picking up Thor's hammer... this is not a critique on the movie, it's just one of my pet peeves when anyone picks up Mjöllnir. I know it was a funny scene and everyone around me laughed their asses off, which I understand, it's just something I don't really like.
The movie itself was really badly edited however. I'm sure it's because it had to be cut down significantly but I still felt that there was far too much left out. How did they find out that Loki's Spear was there? Did Loki show it to Thor while being disguised as Odin? If he did so, why? Or how did Thor find out? Or how did the Avengers think they could just march into a country and attack it? In Civil War, that was a big deal. Why did Ultron make a body for himself and how? Where? Why did he have to make deals with bandits, why didn't he just take the vibranium? How did Ultron become bad while Vision is good? Why can Vision pick up the hammer when Captain America can't? If you introduce characters who can do this who can do this then what are the rules? In the comics it's explained but what are the rules here? Why the complicated plan for Ultron? Why couldn't he just make a nuclear war? He's an A.I. he could have gone all Skynet and kill us all then pick off the survivors with his robots? Where did Thor go? What was that pool, how did he know it was there and where did he pick up Selvig? Why did he help Vision live? Couldn't he just tore the Infinity Stone out of his forehead while he was still dead? Why did he need to wake Vision up?
There are many bad things I could list off but I guess the main reason I disliked the movie was that I did not think that the Avengers were any way threatened. To be honest, Scarlet Witch has beaten the team up better then Ultron. That broken shield scene we were teased in the trailers was only a vision, a dream and that was the first time I got angry. I wanted them to be threatened, I wanted the Avengers to face a challenge or at least something but none of them were in any danger all throughout the movie.
Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver were to be honest, useless. Scarlet Witch was nothing more but a plot-device to kickstart the story and not much else. I will be devil's advocate through, I liked this Quicksilver more than the one in Days of Future Past but I would have liked to see a bit more of his powers. His death wasn't as shocking though and in the end we didn't really have any emotional connection to him, so it wasn't really that big of a deal.
In the end, I'm interested in where they are going with all of this. I felt that this movie was too much of a set-up for Civil War, Ragnarok and the others, much more so than any other. I liked it all right but I think it could have been better.
This is of course only my opinion :D Cheers!