As Good As It Gets
Like the great film, it's made with a great deal of visible affection both in front of and behind the camera.
Mathilde the Guild
Although I seem to have had higher expectations than I thought, the movie is super entertaining.
I had heard that this was one of the worst movies ever made based on a TV show. I admit that in the first twenty or so minutes, but then it got really stupid. A subplot features Sean Connery running a secret society where everyone is dressed as giant technicolor teddy bears. I am not making that up. I had already known about this from the Nostalgia Critic's review, but I was still pretty shocked when I saw it! This features some organization that doesn't allow women in their ranks.That's kind of odd, seeing as how one of their leaders is a woman...who is named "Father"...for some reason? The special effects are quite bad, especially the giant insects (yeah, those are there too). I admit to knowing virtually nothing about the original TV show. Yeah, this isn't Marvel's Avengers, but an Avengers based on a British show. I don't know if things like the bear costumes were in the original series. This movie was very boring with an inspiring plot and characters. *1/2
I'm sure Sean Connery got some big bucks to both play the villain and pump some box office life into this big screen adaption of the British series The Avengers which got great ratings syndicated on this side of the pond. Several people were in the cast at one time or other, but the years of Patrick MacNee as John Steed and Diana Rigg as Emma Peel are what is remembered best.Playing those parts and totally failing to channel the charm of the dialog of the charming Steed and the beautiful martial arts expert Mrs. Peel are Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman. These two are on assignment to find out who is blackmailing the world's governments with a climate control device. Dark clouds are over London literally.It's Sean Connery former MI5 guy retired and the only time this film has some life in it is when he comes before Parliament in full tartan regalia. I guess proud Scot Sean Connery always wanted to do that and he got his wish here.As for the rest if you loved the TV show are you in for a disappointment.
Surreal is really the best way to describe this movie. It beautifully encompasses the Surrealism movement that started in the 1920s and continued, in a way, to hint at Dadaism.Even the dialogue in the film reminded me of going to an art museum."How real do you feel Mrs. Peel?" There is a lot of hate behind this film, a 3.7 rating on IMDb and trolls complaining that Thor and Iron Man weren't in a movie based on a television series that had nothing to do with the comic books.Ignore the hate, this is a movie that people walked into expecting a summer blockbuster and walked out disappointed because they got a thematic action movie art film.It doesn't appeal to the masses, but made the mistake of thinking that it did. Because of that it was a flop.But for those of us that don't cringe in horror over the thought of going to an art museum, the movie is beautiful and done in a way that most of the artist-directors out there can only dream of.It looks brilliant, it looks like moving art on the screen and the dialogue fits perfectly into that mold. It is the surreal film that puts so many others to shame.The only fault it has is the marketing. It was marketed for the Rambo crowd that want nothing more to see the blood and carnage, the over-the-top science fiction special effects that has aliens blow up the White House.Instead you get Surrealist special effects and killer teddy bears. They hit the mark well, but only for those of you that real enjoy that sort of thing.If you walk into The Avengers expecting a lowbrow action movie, you are going to walk out of it in the first few minutes. Think of it more as an action sci-fi art-house film and you'll love it.
This big-budget flop is not without its good points, seeing as it contains enough offhand weirdness and odd situations to appeal to most bad movie fans. Although its about as far away from the original television series as you can get, there's this retro '60s thing going on with the film which makes it pretty amusing to watch. Although the fact that the cast members are obviously taking everything as a joke does get on your nerves after a while, I consider this to be an enjoyable failure and I must admit that I pretty much enjoyed some of the individual scenes.You know you're in for a crazy time with the film's opening, which sees Steed walking down an apparently normal English street only to be attacked by a number of surprise assailants. For example, at one moment a whistling milkman smashes two empty bottles together to use them as weapons as he lunges as Steed. This exceptionally odd beginning sets the campy tone for the rest of the film, which is not for all tastes it has to be said.Packed with cheesily overemphasised dialogue, lots of one-liners and innuendos worthy of a Bond movie, THE AVENGERS has the benefit of a huge budget to include lots of nifty (but hardly convincing) computer effects. These include an attack by a swarm of mechanical bees, characters walking in see-through bubbles and the climatic "storm within a building" scene which is sufficiently loud and over-the-top enough to be a crowd-pleasing event. Elsewhere, we have the ever-odd Eddie Izzard as a mute henchman, one of the least threatening ever to grace a cinema (or television) screen, and bad guys dressed up as giant multicoloured teddy bears in order to disguise their identities.Ralph Fiennes (looking a lot like a young version of Peter Cushing) essays the role of the straight-faced John Steed, and is pretty good; Uma Thurman plays the leather-suited Emma Peel: one wonders why she agreed to be in such a fantastic movie again after the failure of BATMAN & ROBIN but I guess she's a glutton for punishment. Sean Connery is the non-threatening chief villain, and has had enough experience with Bond villains in order to know how to play it, but his performance is somewhat weak. Elsewhere, we have Jim Broadbent as the wheelchair-bound Mother, leader of the agents, and a funny turn from Patrick Macnee as an invisible agent (!).The major problem is the obvious cutting that went on with the film after initial test screenings, which undoubtedly make events confusing at times. In my mind this just adds to the weirdness. See it for yourself to find out how.