Avengers: Age of Ultron is not the revelation that Avengers was. We already knew that an ensemble cast from different movies would work. What this showed is what we get when we don't have to worry about setting it all up, and it's a fast, fun, and exciting adventure.
It's a lot of fun seeing these characters after they've clearly been on many missions together. They're basically a group of friends, just instead of getting together to talk about fantasy football, they're all crazy superheroes. It's been in some of the trailers, but the scene with Thor's hammer really nails home that point (I'm sorry, it just happened, but I'm leaving it in there). So when we start to see the seams in that group, it's pretty powerful.
The big bad is telegraphed a bit from the title, but Ultron shows up and is appropriately terrifying. I was genuinely disturbed by his first appearance, and as he grows in both mental and physical ways, he becomes significantly more scary. Now it should be noted that while this has elements of the "Age of Ultron" event from years ago, we don't see any alternate timelines. And having just recently seen Days of Future Past, I think they were better off.
The character development and interaction is great, as would be expected from a Whedon joint. We learn a lot more about some of the characters that don't have their own movies, and the new characters come relatively fleshed out. The most prominent of those characters being Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch. I actually don't recall if those names are used explicitly, but they're more than just two more super powered people to add to the bunch.
The Marvel Cinematic Unverse, for all it's blessings, also brings a curse. This movie felt like a bit of a stepping stone. You could see the seeds beeing sewn for both Captain America: Civil War, as well as the Infinity Gems movies. And as the flip side to that coin, this movie really expects you to have seen all ten prequel movies. While we don't waste time retreading topics we already know about, but a newcomer would be pretty confused at times. It's a great thing when it comes together, but maybe we're getting in a bit too deep here.
That being said, I had a great time through the whole thing. And there was a kid two seats away that was constantly losing his shit. It was a great thing to see. Even during the final battle sequence I had to take a step back in my mind and could not believe I get to live in a world where, not only did we get to see an Avengers movie, but we got to see two. And they're both so fun people that would never have picked up a comic book get to be introduced to this world. It's a fun time to be a comic fan.
4 out of 5 Creepy Robot AIs