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Avengers: Age Of Ultron – A Review

You probably know by now that I am a comic book movie fan.  I love them.  I buy them.  So it should not surprise you that I went to see the new Avengers movie this weekend.

I have seen all sorts of reviews of this movie.  Many have loved it. Others have been lukewarm.  I have even seen one review that had it ranked as one of the lowest of all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films.  Of course when I saw how that person ranked them, I totally discounted their review and ranking.

The original Avengers movie was amazing.  It brought together all of the heroes that had appeared in solo films and put them together.  Nothing like it had ever been seen before.  It ranks among the greatest superhero films ever.

So, how did I like the sequel?

I loved it.

It started off with action right off the bat.  It slowed down when it needed to.  It introduced new villains and characters.  The Avengers faced incredible obstacles.

It was good to see some of the lesser known characters have an opportunity to shine and develop.

Was it a perfect movie?  No.  I haven’t seen a perfect one yet.  Was it Marvel’s best?  No.  Captain America: Winter Soldier might be.  However, that’s part of the problem I see with some of the less stellar reviews.  They are comparing each movie instead of realizing that each Marvel movie is really a chapter in a larger story they are telling.  According to sources, that story is already planned out through the mid-2020’s.

Will everyone like Age of Ultron?  No and that’s ok.  However, if you love comic book movies, you will like this one.

Will you see Avengers: Age of Ultron?

Categories: Blogging, Movies Tags: ,

My 10 Most Anticipated Movies Of 2015

December 29, 2014 9 comments

If you have been a follower of this blog for a while, you know that I like movies.  I really like all kinds, but I focus primarily on action, sci fi and comic book movies.  At least when it comes to my favorites.

2015 promises to be a big movie year.  There are several I am looking forward to.  It’s hard to pinpoint which I want to watch the most, so I’ll list these somewhat chronologically.

Furious 7 is up first.  It’s the latest in The Fast and The Furious franchise.  The main reason I look forward to this one is because Andrew loves these films.  I would like them but they are something that he and I enjoy watching together.

Avengers: Age of Ultron is up next.  I’m a huge comic book movie geek.  I collected comic books all the way through college before finally giving it up.  These movies allow me to be that same kid that fell in love with comic books in 1973.  This movie is highly anticipated and the trailer looks great.

Mad Max: Fury Road comes out shortly after the Avengers.  I was a huge fan of Mel Gibson’s original run.  I haven’t read too much about how they update this, but I like the concept and I like Tom Hardy.

Tomorrowland is a bit of a mystery to me.  It is based, somewhat, on the area at Disneyland.  It is co-written and directed by Brad Bird who brought us The Incredibles.  What I have read about it seems fascinating, so I’ll give it a whirl.

Terminator Genisys continues the Terminator franchise.  Arnold will be making an appearance, so I have to check this one out.

Next up is Ant-Man.  Marvel did a great job bringing a group of obscure characters to the screen last year in Guardian of the Galaxy.  I have faith that they will take a tale about a guy who can shrink to the size of an ant and turn it into a gigantic success.

Spectre brings back James Bond in the fall.  I have loved James Bond movies for over 30 years now.  The last few have been among the best.

November will bring the final Hunger Games movie with Mockingjay -Part 2.  I haven’t seen part 1 yet, but I will soon and look to see them bring the story home with this one.

The grand poobah of geek movies will come out on December 18.  Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be the first film under the Disney leadership.  J.J. Abrams is directing so, yeah, I’ve got my geek on over this one.

Finally, I am looking forward to Mission: Impossible 5.  Say what you want about Tom Cruise, he does a pretty good job with these films.

Not quite making the cut, but some that I will see in some form or fashion are: Kingsman: The Secret Service, Divergent: Insurgent, Paul Blart 2, The Fantastic Four (though I think this one may stink), The Man From UNCLE, and  London Has Fallen.

What movies are you looking forward to in 2015?

3 Lessons From The Marvel Cinematic Universe

February 12, 2014 6 comments

In a little less than two months, the latest movie from the Marvel Cinematic Universe will debut.  Captain America: The Winter Soldier will hit theaters on April 4.  If everything works out, my son, Andrew, and I will be there to see it.

We are huge superhero movie fans.  There are few that we haven’t seen over the past few years.  Here are a few things that I have learned from the MCU over the years.

1.  Give more than is expected out of you.  As a way of moving the bigger story along, Marvel began adding extra scenes following the credits.  This was first seen in Iron Man.  It continued with The Hulk all the way until The Avengers.  Two extra scenes were added for it, with the last one being a silent, comic one.  Now audiences expect to stay after the credits to see what will happen.  The question each time is how Marvel up the ante going forward.

Shouldn’t we do that as well?  In our relationships.  In our churches.  In our jobs.  With people we don’t even know.  Expectations, both spoken and unspoken, are made for us.  Let’s not just meet expectations.  Let’s blow them out of the water.

2.  Each Marvel film is connected.  Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury appeared in Iron Man.  Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark appeared in The Hulk.  Nick Fury appeared again in Iron Man 2, Thor and Captain America.  All of this culminated in The Avengers.  This is something that has never truly happened in movie history in this way.

We have a couple of choices we can make.  We can retreat within ourselves.  Honestly, that is my natural inclination.  However, I am finding that my life is much richer when I seek to be connected to more people.  Like the MCU, I have developed relationships that connect all the way from here to the West Coast and beyond.  How?  By connecting with the people who my friends are connected to.

3.  Marvel isn’t afraid to take chances.  This summer Marvel will release a film about a group that few people know anything about.  Guardians of the Galaxy will be the tenth film Marvel has produced.  It will feature a cosmic band of heroes which include Rocket Raccoon and Groot, a living tree.  Weird, right?  Sure, Marvel’s name gives it a good chance, but it’s still a chance.  We are willing to give Marvel the benefit of the doubt due to their previous successes.

In 2015, Marvel will produce a film called Ant-Man to kick off their “Phase Three” after Avengers 2.  Sure, we comic book geeks know who he is, but the general public doesn’t.  Who is directing it?  The guy who made Shaun of the Dead.  Again, another chance that Marvel is willing to take.

It’s easy to just keep doing what we do.  Day after day.  Week after week.  Year after year.  How do we grow?  By taking chances.  We can’t continually do the same thing.  Iron Man 3 was different from the others.  Marvel took a bit of a chance by doing something a little different.  Some fans hated it.  Some of us loved it.  But it was anything but the same.

There are lessons for all of us to learn if we will slow down a bit and see them.  Even from a bunch of superhero movies.

What lessons can you learn from the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

We’re All In This Together

December 3, 2013 6 comments

One of the recurring themes that keeps coming up in my thoughts is the fact that we’re all in this thing together.

Batman was solo when he first started.  Eventually Bruce Wayne took Dick Grayson in as his ward and Batman gained a sidekick with Robin.

A menace from outer space terrorized the Earth in 1960.  Joining to combat it was Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Flash, Aquaman and Martian Manhunter.  None of them could face the threat alone.  They came together to defeat it.

Iron Man debuted in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2008.  The Hulk followed a couple of months later.  Iron Man 2 came around two years later and then Thor and Captain America showed up in 2011.  The Avengers assembled to face Loki and a huge cosmic threat in 2012 to face what they could not face alone.

These comic books and movies are just glimpses of what we need to understand about our faith.  We can’t do it on our own.

An eye can’t live without an ear or the rest of the body.  They’re each connected to the other and cannot stand alone.

Neither can we.

We aren’t Lone Ranger Christians.  We aren’t Tontos either.  We’re more.  Much more.

We aren’t flying solo.  I’ve only really flown twice in my life.  What I realized that there was no flying solo.  Teams made the plane fly and land and everything in between.

We’re all in this together.  Let’s go out and prove it now.

How does your life show that we’re all in this together?

I Love SuperHero Movies

October 25, 2012 7 comments

In case you haven’t been a follower of the blog for very long, I need to tell you something.  You have probably guessed it by the title.  I love superhero movies.

I began reading comic books before I started kindergarten.  I still have a  few of my earliest comics from 1973.

I geeked out in 1989 when Batman came out.  I loved it later when Spider-Man and X-Men finally made it to the silver screen.

So, you need to know that I am excited about 2013.  Iron Man 3, Man of Steel, The Wolverine and Thor: Dark World are all coming.

Then there is 2014.  Captain America: Winter Soldier,  Spider-Man, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and Guardians of the Galaxy will all be coming to a theater near all of us.

In 2015?  Avengers 2, Justice League and Ant Man.

This doesn’t count the other movies that are in production.

In other words, I’m pretty excited about the next two and a half years.

But……

James warns us about making plans like this.

He tells us that life is but a vapor.

James says that I should say, “If the Lord wills” I will see these movies.

So yes, I love superhero movies.

I’m looking forward to seeing these movies and more.

If the Lord wills it.

Are you ever guilty of making plans without thinking about whether the Lord wills it?

Agent Colson’s Not Dead, And So Are You

June 26, 2012 6 comments

You may have seen The Avengers by now.  If so, there is no need for a spoiler alert.  If not, you may want to quit reading if you plan to go see the movie.

In a pivotal scene in the movie, Agent Colson, who has been Nick Fury’s right hand man in gathering all of these heroes together, is killed by Loki.  Stabbed through the heart, we watch him die.

There’s just one problem with that scenario.

Agent Colson’s not dead.

I read too many comic books as a kid to believe that he died in that scene.

I don’t know exactly how they will pull it off.  That may not have been the real Colson.  It may have been a life-like decoy.  Maybe someone with a healing power showed up.  Somehow, someway, Colson lives.

If you’re a follower of Christ, it’s the same for you.  You were dead.  He has made you alive.  When you die on this earth, it’s a false death.  It’s transition time.  People are gathering around in sadness, when they should be celebrating.  You’re going home.  You will soon be more alive than ever.

Agent Colson’s not dead.  And so are you.

Are you a follower of Christ?  Do you have this eternal life on your side?

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