THE AVENGERS Blu-ray Review

     September 26, 2012


The Avengers was 2012’s biggest hit, and is now the third highest grossing film of all time both domestically and worldwide (it’s hard to top James Cameron). And now that summer’s over, it’s fair to say it was the most entertaining blockbuster and the most entertaining superhero film of the summer. It’s also got huge problems, though they ultimately don’t matter. Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlet Johansson, Jeremy Renner, and Mark Ruffalo assemble here to fight an army of aliens led by Tom Hiddleston. Joss Whedon writes and directs, and our review of the four-disc 3D Blu-ray set follows after the jump.

avengers-movie-image-chris-evans-robert-downey-jrOne of the great things about the film is that it keeps getting better, which is also to say the opening is flat out terrible. We’re introduced to the alien threat, and then it goes to a secret military base where Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) meets with Agents Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) to check on the work being done by Selvig (Stellan Skarsgard). Selvig is working on the cosmic cube, and Hawkeye (Renner) is keeping an eye on things from above. After some awkwardly dished out exposition, the cosmic cube opens up and brings Loki (Hiddleston) into the picture. Hiddleston manages to look menancing when he shows up, but he then uses his staff of power to turn some – but not all – of people there into slaves, and steals the cube. Which starts Fury on his plan to assemble his team of superheroes. But his arrival, and the chase that follows is really flat, and there’s piles and piles of exposition

Steve Rogers (Evans) is still adjusting to the modern world, but he’s in. Tony Stark (Downey Jr.) is also pretty quickly convinced to sign up as well. But it takes Natasha Romanoff (Johansson) a little bit of work to convince Bruce Banner to at least meet with everyone, and she suggests she just wants him as a scientist, not as “the other guy.” Of these scenes, it’s funny how much of it is resting on our familiarity with the characters, and that may work best with Downey Jr. because the patter is a nice pick-me-up. Loki ends up going to Germany to get some Iridium, and it’s there we get our first superhero fight scene, and our first groaning metaphor. It’s Germany, he asks them to kneel. An old man makes the Nazi parallel obvious, then so does Captain America. It’s pretty cheese-dick.

the-avengers-thor-chris-hemsworth-imageAnd here the movie is still pretty shaky, and then Thor (Hemsworth) shows up because he has to. Thor, Iron Man and Captain America all have a bit of a throwdown, because of no good reason, but it is a fight scene and it’s been at least three or four minutes since the last one. They capture Loki and bring him on board. Loki is obviously the world’s biggest mastermind because he figured out before he was captured that Nick Fury was going to assembled all the people he has, because his plan counts on Bruce Banner being on the plane, it seems. But around this point the movie starts coming together (much like the team itself).

Loki’s staff of plot necessity then starts making everyone angry – which is weird because later it’s shown that it has no effect on Tony Stark – and Natasha knows that getting Banner angry is part of Loki’s plan, but no one says anything because we need another action sequence. Loki’s plan works, everyone gets angry, which then leads to the helicarrier being attacked by Loki’s team of zombie slaves. This leads to a death that unties the Avengers and gels them into a team, which is good because they’ve got to protect New York against an alien invasion.

avengers-movie-image-renner-evans-johanssonThe reason why The Avengers works at all is because it’s most build up to the third act, or – to be fair – the last twenty minutes or so (which is actually about fifteen minutes of action), but that build up pays off because so few action movies hit their stride at the end. Think about it: Name a modern action movie that doesn’t peak in the middle. That’s partly because – for the most part – that’s the only time in the movie when the hero can fail. Think about Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, or even the best superhero movies previous. The ending fights are usually less interesting that the battles that came before. Even the best previous Marvel-made movies like Iron Man or Captain America taper off toward the end. Even The Dark Knight, even Spider-Man 2 start to sag. The fact that this film gets awesome as it’s concluding means that the film ends on a high unlike most other big action movies of late.

the-avengers-blu-rayBut what that also means is that you have to sit through a lot of set up which would be more interesting if Whedon was a better visual filmmaker. Much of the film before the end is perfunctory, and Whedon shoots most things like television coverage until the end sequence (which was probably all pre-viz’d because of the effects involved). But the film gets steadily better as it goes along, even if the plot is built on the shakiest of foundations. That’s not an insult, the film works and works well, and perhaps wouldn’t work if it was firing on all cylinders before that conclusion. But for a movie following a number of origin films, there’s a little disappointment in this film also being an origin tale. And much like J.J. Abrams Star Trek, it’s about getting things in place, but saving that “in place” until the film’s final moments. That’s all well and good, but let’s hope the sequel hits the ground running now that the pieces are in place.

Disney’s Blu-ray four disc set presents the film in 3D, regular Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital copy, and also comes with a downloadable version of the soundtrack. The film is presented in widescreen (1.78:1) and in 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio. The 3D in the film was weak, and the film is dark, so I found the 2D version preferable. The transfer is otherwise excellent, and the soundtrack is deliciously bass-heavy. The film comes with a second screen app (that was not online for review), and a commentary by Joss Whedon, who is good at the format, and often makes fun of himself. Also included is the short film ‘Item 47’ (11 min.) which has Lizzy Caplan, Jesse Bradford and Titus Welliver dealing with a stolen alien technology. It’s silly. There’s a gag reel (4 min.), and eight deleted and extended scenes (15 min.). There’s an alternate opening and closing which are terrible, but there’s also a great scene with Steve Rogers that should have been in the movie. There are two featurettes: “A Visual Journey” (6 min.) and “Assembling the Ultimate Team” (8min.) which are super fluffy. The disc closes out with a Soundgarden music video.

Around The Web
  • Mr.Rich316

    Much more of a recap than a review. How did the 3d look? How was the sound? What other formats are out there? No mention of the “Phase One” Collectors set? I give this review 2 out of 5 stars.

    • THundersauresrex

      The collector’s set isnt being released

      • Andy

        It is, just not until Spring 2013 when it’ll either be in new packaging, or they’ll have reached a licensing agreement with the briefcase manufacturer.

      • THundersauresrex

        That date has been taken down. looks like they are just going to re release the other DVDs with the extra features next year at some point… soooo as of right now a collectors set wont exist…..

      • Mr.Rich316

        Oh Sorry ,where was that information in the “review”?

  • Tim

    Goodness, this write-up was just… agh

    • Sean

      After reading it I felt compelled to start doing research into who I need to contact about getting this person fired.

      I’m not saying I’m a great writer, but I can write a review which doesn’t contain the sentence, “It’s pretty cheese-dick,” and which fundamentally understands why someone might be reading a BluRay review of a hit movie which EVERYONE has seen.

  • Wooster

    Whatever. Haters gonna hate.

  • The Exploiter

    Goodness me, someone thinks highly of their opinion.

  • Carlos

    Thank you, someone who doesn’t completely suck this movie’s d*ck and recognizes its major problems

    • The Exploiter

      Thanks for editing your post. It was much less inappropriate to read with that asterisk there.

  • Nomis1700

    There’s nothing wrong with this review of the film. But how was the image quality of the blu-ray?

  • Sean

    I didn’t open this article to read someone attempt to write witty and snarky critiques of a popular film. I came here to read a review of the BLU RAY. The last paragraph does list the special features and specs, but it literally only gives two word statements most of the features.

    Have the Collider reviews become so obsessed with being clever that they’ve completely forgotten why readers read reviews?

  • Efren

    awesome dvd

  • Andy

    It is, just not until Spring 2013 when it\’ll either be in new packaging, or they\’ll have reached a licensing agreement with the briefcase manufacturer.

  • sense 11


  • Stinky

    This isn’t an Avengers Blu-ray Review. It’s an Avengers Review.

    Was this a re-post to hit-whore the site now that the Blu-ray is out? Or does this dude actually think Collider needs another Avengers review? Talk about cheese-dick.

  • Rye

    “It’s pretty cheese-dick”?

    This is a film review?

  • Jacqueline

    Actually, if you watch the movie, the spear DOES have an effect on Tony Stark, it’s just that when Loki goes to touch him with it to take control of him like he did Hawkeye, he hits the Arc Reactor instead of actually making contact with Stark’s chest. If he hadn’t hit the Arc Reactor, Loki probably wouldn’t have had those ‘performance issues’. So there’s really nothing wrong with those scenes.

  • Masshuu il Thulcandra

    You are the cheese dick! You should have been born a Jew in 1930′s Germany and we probably wouldn’t have to read this scrawl. You were supposed to be reviewing the BLURAY DVD you idiot not the movie.

    • Shaun

      Wow. OK, while I think Andre’s supposed “review” of the Blu-ray was crap this is just a vile comment. I think a reality check’s in order here.

  • anonymous

    Face it. This site has never been about good journalism, or good grammar for that matter. This review meets the sites standards hands down. Poor fan-boy had to hold in all his enmity about the film for so long without a forum until someone took pity on him.

  • anonymous

    Hm. I meant to write “site’s standards”. I’ve read so many poorly written articles here, it’s catching.

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  • Someone

    You’re all acting like a bunch of butthurt fan boys, shape up! Not everyone likes what you likes.

    • Everyone Else

      And not everyone hates what you “hates” either!

      But some of us have a better command of the English language than you do.

  • Someone

    You\’re all acting like a bunch of butthurt fan boys, shape up! Not everyone likes what you likes.

    • Liberal Lion

      I think you got it backwards, it’s grammar school first then posting on websites. You’re welcome.

  • Nate H

    Wow, I wasn’t expecting this Blu Ray Review to be quite so…pointless. The typical blu ray/dvd review goes through the contents of the Blu Ray and comments on how many extras there are, the worth of the extras, and the quality of the images. This review had none of that – unless you count the quick paragraph at the end where he hurriedly and boringly rattles off a few things. If I wanted to read a pretentious review of the actual film, I would\’ve done that…oh, I don\’t know…three MONTHS ago when the movie came out. This reviewer needs to get over it – everyone loved the movie, so the hipster “quot;this movie wasn\’t that great but the average movie-goer will eat up its mediocrity” act is just annoying. Still buying the Blu Ray, Andre.

  • Mike jevons

    Worst review ever. Bitter fanboy

  • marco

    Andre Dellamorte is pretty cheesedick….

  • Andrew

    What the hell was that? Not only was it not a review of the blu- ray, it was a terrible review of the movie. It was like the equivalent of saying, “The Godfather is a big steaming pile of monkey crap that sucks almost all the way through and is certainly a waste of time. It’s total ass clown, but that’s not an insult.”

    Do your job.

  • Henny

    The Dar Knight Rises was the best film of the summer, and I gave The Avengers a 5/5!

  • Chris

    I will grant you that there was quite a bit of build up in this movie, but the majority of people that went to see this probably didn’t see all of the stand alone movies. I also would not agree that nothing really interesting happens until the third act. I saw this movie in theaters with a few coworkers from DISH, and it is the best movie I have seen this year. I liked it so much that I added it to my Blockbuster @Home queue right after I saw it, and it came in the mail today. It was even better the second time in my opinion, and now I can say it is my favorite superhero movie of all time. I love renting Blu-Rays so I can check out their bonus features, and I am glad that I checked this one out because the extras are pretty lame. I think I may just by the DVD and wait for the collector’s edition to come out.

  • rp

    I agree with all of the above comments. This is one of the worst Blu-Ray reviews I have ever read, anywhere. Christ, how stupid is this guy? The sad part is that he really seems to believe that he’s being clever. I don’t think he has any idea what a douchebag he is. I love Collider, but Andre Dellamorte is a Mewling Quim.

  • Lance

    Don’t forget Prometheus! Also one of the best films of the summer!

    The winners for the summer of 2012 are: The Dark Knight Rises, The Avengers, and Prometheus.

    The losers were Battleship and that Oogieloves movie or whatever it was called.

  • Strong Enough

    lot of fanboys angry on this page lmao

    • Danny

      Just because people are rightly complaining about someone reviewing the movie instead of the blu ray doesn’t make them angry fanboys. Dumbass.

  • Ytsejamer1

    This blu-ray release felt very incomplete to me. I was hoping for more behind the scenes stuff on the making and production of the movie. The extras in there were weak…aside from the standard fare deleted scenes. A four disc \"set\" and all they have is roughly 25-30 minutes of extras? Garbage.

    The movie is great of course but its blu-ray release was lazy and woefully incomplete.

    • Shaun

      Apparently, there’s a Target exclusive that includes a bonus disc with a 90 minute “making of” documentary. Of course, I didn’t know about this until AFTER I picked up the Blu-ray at Best Buy.

      Retailer exclusives like that are crap… How hard would it be to give EVERYONE the same features? All about the money, I guess. It never even occurred to me to check Target, but I guess I will next time.

      Anyhow, a real review of the Blu-ray might’ve imparted info about that exclusive, and also reviewed that exclusive feature and let us know if it was worthwhile or not. Chances are most people interested in the Blu-ray (or DVD) have already seen the movie and like it, regardless of Andre’s “cheese-dick” opinions. A shame he couldn’t tell us more about the actual Blu-ray.

  • Chris

    Agreed, this review is a bit opinionated and superficial. I absolutely liked the movie and thought Joss did an incredible job. However as Joss himself mentioned it has it’s flaws. Some of the character scenes are not as good and sharp as esp in the Iron Man movies, which were probably the best in terms of character focus of all the Marvel movies.. Even in Iron Man 2 where the action was pretty predictable and “we seen it all before” the character scenes were top notch. The action scenes in Avengers was great and the best of all the movies. Some of the camera work in A1 was not that great and I hope they get a better and more adventurous DP for A2.

  • frank kirk

    i think people these days dont realise that a review is not an opinion, i only read half way through as this so called review is ridiculous, and someones reply was watever haters lol stupid people on the internet how you amuse me …..

  • Javyb1980

    Let me start off by saying its OK to dislike any film regardless of how much praise it has gotten, frankly I have read some negative reviews of this movie and most of them have some strong points to argue with, but when you just go into an article expecting a review on the actual blu ray content and get a very lame, vague, and poorly thought out review of the movie which was released about 5 months ago and that have the world has seen and have made up there opinion on just blows my mind. I guess Andre wanted to get his last words in on the movie which is fine but just don’t do it when your supposed to be reviewing something else.

  • Shaun

    “One of the great things about the film is that it keeps getting better, which is also to say the opening is flat out terrible.”

    Apparently I saw a different movie than Andre? There’s nothing wrong with the opening of the movie… It’s a little jarring, and confusing, the first time you see it, perhaps, but it makes sense once you get into the movie, and it sets the stage for a truly epic threat.

    Now if you want to see a “terrible” opening, see the alternate opening (included on the DVD and Blu-ray). That was lousy, and I’m glad they didn’t use that one. Or, in spite of awesome it looked in IMAX, the opening to TDKR is pretty stupid too… What with the CIA guy who was so full of himself he didn’t think to see who was under those masks? That was a pretty confusing opening the first time around too, and, unfortunately, TDKR really doesn’t get any better as it goes along (I loved BB and TDK, but not TDKR).

    Other the Chitari being more or less a faceless set of villains, The Avengers was just damned good fun with the focus squarely on the heroes (and the primary villain). In that respect, it’s similar to what made Batman Begins and the first Iron Man so good.

  • Shaun

    “An old man makes the Nazi parallel obvious, then so does Captain America. It’s pretty cheese-dick.”

    So is your review, Andre. Seriously. If you don’t like the movie, fine. Whatever. But this “review” never gets any more insightful than comments like the one I quoted above. In other words, it comes more like Comic Book Guy ranting than, say, something worthy of Ebert. Or a professional reviewer that’s not even half as good as him.

  • Shaun

    “Thor, Iron Man and Captain America all have a bit of a throwdown, because of no good reason,”

    Three powerful guys, with equally powerful egos, get together under tense circumstances… You can’t see how that might result in some conflict? Also, what would you have had them do? Just get together and all be friendly towards one another with no disagreements or interpersonal conflict? Well… THAT’S exciting, Andre.

    Have you ever even read a comic book in your life? What fans wouldn’t want to see what happens when Thor’s hammer meets Cap’s shield? Stuff like that is a nerd’s wet dream, and Whedon delivered. In spades.

    Better that than Nolan’s deciding to only give us about 10 minutes of actual Batman action in his nearly 3-hour supposed “Batman” movie this past summer… Apparently he felt that muddled political metaphors and Wall Street fraud were somehow more exciting. Many people apparently agreed with him, but plenty (like me) didn’t. I’ll give Nolan props for ambition, but Whedon takes the crown for making a far more entertaining, yet not dumbed down, film.

  • Jimmy Dean

    This article should have been titled, “They didn’t let me review the actual movie when it originally came out so hey guys check this out I can totally do it next time. P.S. This comes in DVD and Blu-Ray”. Seriously, you’re awful. That’s not because you spent the whole review complaining, but because you managed to completely fail at the one specific task you were given. Thanks for included the Amazon links to the product at the bottom Collider, so I can actually read about the Blu-Ray and DVD releases somewhere. Seriously, that review was embarrassing.

  • Hrothgar

    This is a terrible as a review of the Blu Ray. What are the special features? What are the specs? Anything on the commentary? This is just another review of the movie, which people don’t need again if they’re interested in buying the Blu Ray. This should be obvious.

    What the hell is cheese-dick? I feel like this review was assigned to an angsty 12 year old trying to sound like a movie critic.

  • Jshillingford

    I expect that some critics will not like a film, even when I, and most everyone else, does. However, I rather expected “THE AVENGERS Blu-ray Review” to, you know, review the Blu-ray? Instead, I get 7 paragraphs of why the movie sucked and one paragraph on the actual Bluray – and it didn’t say much. This was poorly done.

  • Chuckie

    This review was great because it sent me to to learn what cheesedick means. Thanks Andrew, I think.

  • Sean

    I re-watched the Avengers last night (on blu ray), and it reminded me just how much I hated this review. I was so annoyed by this sentence, “The reason why The Avengers works at all is because it’s most build up to the third act, or – to be fair – the last twenty minutes or so (which is actually about fifteen minutes of action), but that build up pays off because so few action movies hit their stride at the end,” I decide to time the final battle. As it turns out it isn’t 15 minutes, it’s 28 minutes. So even when he was kind of making a positive remark, he threw in a jab which wasn’t even accurate. Which makes me wonder if he even re-watched it.

  • Todd Lovingood

    We did not like the prior reviewers thoughts, you think? How they said, what they said,
    took the importance instead of the review. The movie was great and anything that has to
    do with that movie is a good day for me. Good movie.
    blu ray

  • chada2

    This review was great because it sent me to to learn what cheesedick means. Thanks Andrew, I think.