MODERN PROMETHEUS

MODERN PROMETHEUS

 (Or)

Looking at film through Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron

avengers-age-of-ultron-comic-con-14-poster-full-hd

Immaterial as it may be our opinion on this state, the movies that our generation will be associated with will be the comic book movie, three words now very close to my heart.

The comic book movie now, is the film noir of the past, the western of its time, a broad genre defining a certain time and recalling a certain sentiment. Like the above genres that have been mentioned, the comic book movie will surely get its due, but only in the future.

This sudden construction of a pedestal for the comic book movie is because I truly believe that the comic book movie has in fact erased the boundaries between word and visual which is something every great literary adaptation aims to be, comic books being truly the most visual amongst the printed forms of literature. The comic book movie is also accelerator in the fusion of the genres, and this is because of the variety that each comic character offer.

“Man creates his own demons”

Avengers_Age_of_Ultron_68640

In Age of Ultron, Tony Stark fears for the future of the planet and creates a protective force under the hood. Ultron would be A.I enabled Iron Men to be called onto provide eternal peace for our planet, but as we can all guess, this save the world vanity project (TDKR reference done) goes not only out of hand but also turns back on its creator.

If we are looking to track the genetic genealogy of Avengers: Age of Ultron, then it is most certainly Mary Shelley’s gothic classic Frankenstein, only increment action here and there and populate the screen with powerful beings.

Some of the problems that people had with Ultron was that, the movie did not perhaps have a powerful villain, but I found that this movie had more character than its predecessor; because here (Ultron) there is no reason to create a powerful villain to justify and the characters have already been established.

The end is a more relaxed picture, where the intention is not to be blown away by the graphics of it all, but to go on this adventure with this bunch of misfits who are now emotionally charged rather than charged with heroics, and there is the inter-super banter!

Whedon also indulges momentarily into 1950s territory, the super hero movie giving way to over the bar talk between the troubled in-love damsel (Natasha Romanoff played by the super talented ScarJo) and the world weary-cynical-removed hero (Dr. Bruce Banner). A masterstroke of a love track between the noises.

This is the kind of genre inter-operate ability that is interesting for me to watch.

With Marvel trying to impress us with release dates for mega movies in the years to come, an Avengers movie is no longer about why and how the Avengers trounce their enemies, but about the characters, these heroes and their feelings, the setting, the worlds, the words. Action and villains can take the rear.

I was a partial Marvel movie convert after Iron-Man 3 and a fully changed man after the second Captain America flick and it seems I will remain so after Ultron. I hope that these films are seen beyond than what they are intended for, but I am sure it will now be an un-ignorable thing in the recent future, but right now if you go and tell your friend that Avengers:Ultron is about the perils of creativity and questions if man can really play God, super-men in this case, you will probably be chuckled at.

Post Script to Ultron

**** Captain America is amazing! (as if we needed to tell you that, this is also my answer to “which is your favourite avenger?” question”

****Mary Shelley’s 1818 gothic horror novel Frankenstein was subtitled Modern Prometheus as it mirrored the mythical tale, we have smartly made it the title for our Avengers: Ultron piece (we are amazing!). Our subtitle of course is over ambitious, I must confess.

****This piece was written under the utter influence of the Ultron soundtrack, specifically the “heroes” track. Soundtrack composed bby Brian Tyler and Danny Elfman.

**** Most of the times when we say Ultron we mean Avengers: Age of Ultron the movie and not the villain.

Thank you for reading.

Advertisements

CK AND MM AT THE MOVIES: CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER

CA
Caustic Kumar was trying to chew into a milk chocolate bar as he and Moderate Manohar made their way into the offices of the Lowly Laureate.
The dark shadow of the editor loomed over them so much so that both the writers thought that they had walked into the control room of some secret organisation mostly controlled by the United States.
Editor: Writers at the ready! Submit your works there! <Points to an automaton spell check editor, the writers are nevertheless terrified!>
CK and MM together: we’ve just seen the movie; think we should do some bouncing off each other before we submit anything
Editor: some work ethic you two have! <To a computer> initiate Editor exit sequence. <Beep Beep sounds follow as the editor makes his way outside>
CK and MM together: Peace, at last!
CK to MM: Every time we see a movie, I don’t think you shouldn’t start with “what did you think of it”, it is boring and I’m guessing readers are tired of it.
MM: what readers?
<Both laugh>
MM <takes the serious movie critic on TV voice> Captain America, Marvel’s latest offering in a series of…
CK: they all know that… ok fine, what did you think about it?
MM: absolutely loved it!
CK: well that’s not too moderate; you’re out of character Manohar
MM: Cant you be not sly and agree that we are in agreement?
CK: Well, I loved it too, the more I think about it, the more I like it, proves that this not a wonderment-in-awe movie.
MM: What does wonderment-in-awe mean anyway? <Realises, then hits his forehead>
CK: there you are Manohar, playing Watson again; any basic reader will know what wonderment-in-awe is, even if they don’t, they will make up something for it.
MM: right, before we get into all that, I think this is a brilliant film singularly speaking, as for the whole build up to Avengers 2, I cannot say;
CK: because each stand alone film is being helmed by a different guy and…
MM: exactly
CK: interesting to see how they tried to fit in a 70s type conspiracy thriller into the scheme of things, Captain America being all patriotic and all seems the best Manchurian candidate for the job. It is fun, especially when Robert Redford comes in.
MM: yes I vividly remember you being the only one who whistled when his name came up <tries to sneer, but then thinks it is indecent>
CK: <looks to the ceiling> Yes I’m a man of another time, just like Captain America.
MM: I never took this SHIELD any seriously, thought they should have been called…
CK: UMBRELLA! Manohar this is the third time you have said this and I agree it was funny the first time, but not now
MM: As in an umbrella organisation that brings all these supermen under one roof.
CK: speaking of shields, I think the shield based action in the film was tremendous, also that sound when our hero straps it on his back. Action was really good; maybe it is because I felt the special effects were muted.
MM: Yes, as in I loved Iron Man 3, think some idiot at the Lowly Laureate wrote one glowing review which the editor had no problem with, but on repeated viewings it is just another Shane Black movie with monstrous graphics.
CK: this is what I was trying to put forward in my wonderment-in-awe theory, you never listen!
MM: So I say that we should give more points to Cap for actually having some kindoff story
CK: it had a pretty good story and was funny too; this is not some attempt to force fit but is fitting and we don’t give out points.
MM: So do you feel that we can actually see better Superhero films? Not just the usual originstor-superhero graphic madness thing? I don’t think so
CK: I can’t really say, with all my pumping cynicism I can say that they are after our 120Rs (higher outside TN) but then Marvel has made its money, I think it is past the brute ensemble box office days, hoping Avengers 2 is better.
MM: Ah…Hmm…Okie…that actually meant nothing, now to the characters. Supersonic development for this Chris Evans, I have begun to like him from actually ignoring him in the Avengers.
CK: he is a good actor, too many good moments for him with the winter…
MM: STOP!!!
CK: right, no spoiler clause.
<Both stare at each other for a moment and then begin to discuss the plot in dept and animatedly, luckily for you…yes you we won’t put out all that>
MM: finally…
CK: Captain America: the Winter Soldier is the stand alone that Marvel deserves right now, also the one it needs
MM: wait, wait, what about the Edward Snowden based surveillance-morality plot and the verily guessable twists.
CK: the surveillance plot was watchable only the twists weren’t, also Iron Man could have solved this problem within two minutes or so.
<Computer in the voice of JARVIS, ‘your conversation has been recorded for our internal audit purposes, sir’>
CK: why do they even audit our magazine, we have no income!
<Uplifting drums and violins music play in the background as CK and MM walk out straight in search of their next assignment>
Curtains
No mid/post credit, go home and sleep soon.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

SUIT UP!!

(In as many colors as possible)

Avengers (2012)

 

Avengers poster courtesy Mondo, yes it raacks!

Sometime during one of the hundred carefully and aesthetically choreographed action sequences, Phil Coulson (“since when is he Phil? His first name is Agent”, Tony Stark informs us) informs rather warily on his way to the end (oh no! spoilers) to the main antagonist Loki played to some exception by Tom Hiddleston that he (Loki) would never win because there was no conviction.

Well, that could apply to the rest of the costumed crusaders and the whole plot of Avengers, we all like them; but do we want them all the time? Simply put in more serious prose: What is the relevance of a hero in the absence of a crisis? The Avengers doesn’t deal with all that, since Marvel had already green-lighted the mega-project and only needed a skin of a story to work on. The skin provided by Joss Whedon is there, but we do not have time to pinch in further, only later these questions were realized whensome thinking was done beyond the CGI. Was an Assemble! Call really necessary to tackle an invading army brought out by Loki (simply put villain, otherwise put Shakespearean tragic anti hero with a brother problem). I mean haven’t these fellows (Iron Man, Captain America, The Hulk, Thor and others. Simply put: good guys, the heroes. Otherwise cannot be put.) have done those acts singularly in the past.

Tesseract, the cube of infinite energy is the item of contention as with the previous Marvel production of Captain America, Loki steals it right from Nick Fury in return of an army of Chitauri (more bad guys) which will lead directly to earthlings to be ‘free of freedom’. Comics and any literature often derided for inducing loss of reality states in its readers have always stayed on pace with real events, like how Avengers meanders through nuclear disarmament, energy crisis and the power of the people. But are these done just as a nod to reality or will these help in creating something in the public is a topic hardly discussed, not even by Arnab Goswami. Fiction follows fact only up to a point where it can fuel its own progress, in the end these are just plot elements.

Joss Whedon’s Avengers is not pretentious and gives what it exactly aims for: a proper summer blockbuster, only to maximize those electronic ticket printing sounds at the theatres and it does this cleverly by indulging in the main characters only if the events lead to a graphic fight and this type of approach not only is good to watch, does not mess with our head in any way, in plain sight, it is an enjoyable movie with right lines at the opportune moments. Dialog in superhero movies should be a separate PhD topic, there is just so much to observe.

There is no need to bother about acting in a film headlined by Robert Downey Jr, especially when he is joined by a shy and angry Mark Ruffalo, the heroic Chris Evans, and the visitor Chris Hemsworth, though I did expect a little more of chatter amongst them, all that is lost in the run up to the war.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is a very theater friendly one, not only it has internal connections, there is also the happy fact that simply for watching the Avengers you would have to go through those told stories and the looming possibility of further individual films like Hulk.

Opinions on movies are mostly instantaneous, which makes it easy to proclaim that a/any movie is the most ‘awesomatic of the aaaromale’ superhero movie ever, but Avengers is not to be so. End of the day fans are happy and will sleep without fear that they are in the good hands of the Protectors of Planet Earth, ‘realists’ will nod in disbelief and continue to make feigned movies.

So Suit Up, you don’t need a reason to watch the movie, as they didn’t need one to make one.

The piece was written under the influence of a song fittingly called, “Tu Mera Hero” from the movie Desi Boyzz (yes two zees), close friends tell me it is the only good thing in the film.

Joss Whedon’s Avengers is now out on theatres, no good print available on net.