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Movie Review: The Avengers

Mike Finkelstein wants to save the world! He just put on his cape and his red boots and his spandex, and he’s off to the city to fight crime! Wheeeeeee!!! Oh, crap! An intergalactic army of aliens?!? Call someone else!!! *Runs away screaming* Here is his review of “The Avengers”.

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Mike Finkelstein wants to save the world!   He just put on his cape and his red boots and his spandex, and he’s off to the city to fight crime!   Wheeeeeee!!!   Oh, crap!   An intergalactic army of aliens?!?   Call someone else!!!   *Runs away screaming* Here is his review of “The Avengers”.

PLOT: When Loki (Tom Hiddleson) summons an intergalactic army to take over the world, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and SHIELD call on “Earth’s Mightiest Superheroes” to save the day.   Together, Captain America (Chris Evans), Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), and the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) become The Avengers, and give us the best superhero adventure in years.

Check out the trailer:

MIKE’S REVIEW:   Ho-ly S***!   The hype is all true, my friends!   THE AVENGERS has arrived and it is every bit as amazing as it could and should be.   Joss Whedon has done the impossible and somehow incorporated all of Earth’s mightiest superheroes in a movie that is not only action packed from the first frame to the last, but also a perfect blend of that action, drama, and comedy that’ll have you wondering how the hell so many other superhero movies have gone so wrong.

After last seeing him perish into a worm hole while his adoptive father and brother looked on (could mess up anybody…), Loki is back and looking for vengeance.   The “rightful king of Asgard” wants his planet to rule, and has chosen Earth as his domain.   Enter Nick Fury and his team to assemble a band of the world’s mightiest superheroes: Tony Stark (Iron Man), Steve Rogers (Captain America), Bruce Banner (Hulk), Thor, Natasha Romanoff (Black Widow), and Clive Barton (Hawkeye).

To have such a group together for two-and-a-half hours is almost certain recipe for disaster.   There are tons of sequels and comic book movies that have crumbled under the overkill.   I still don’t know how the man did it, but Whedon created the perfect mix.   No matter whom your favorite was, every personality got their chance to shine without stealing any spotlight (amazing, especially since four characters had their own movies already) and every character had their chance to interact one-on-one with everyone else, whether it be a long fight, or just a conversation over trading cards.   They may have taken a while to gather some traction (as Stark would say), but you could feel the respect growing between the group until they ultimately did what they had to do: save the world.

And that, my friends, is the secret weapon that Whedon never forgot: the human aspect.   While the action is crammed in, Whedon slowed down the pacing just enough at points to let us know that all our favorite superheroes are still human (well, mostly…).   They have doubts and fears and demons to fight, and that is the emotional aspect so many other films either forget or over exaggerate.   (Again, the man is incredible with balancing…)   One specific conversation between Stark and Banner even left me with chills, and has my vote as the best emotional moment in the Marvel universe so far.

As for the cast, Robert Downey Jr, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner are all back in their roles that you’ve come to love them in (have to point out that Downey is still one sarcastic mother— as Stark, and Evans embodies the innocence and leadership that Captain America needs).   As for Loki, you may be skeptical of having him back so soon again as the villain, but Tom Hiddleson brings such a conflicted, brat-ish evil to the role (not to mention a hell of an army…), that you’ll welcome him back in a second.   Add on fan favorites Agent Phil Coulson (so happy that Clark Gregg really got his time to shine in this one…), Agent Maria Hill, and visits from Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) Erik Selvig (Stellan SkarsgÃ¥rd) and Jarvis (Paul Bettany), and you got yourself a damn good time.

But with all of these amazing actors sharing a screen, it ended up being Mark Ruffalo who stole the show.   Ruffalo, who came into what seemed to be a cursed role as the Hulk (after Edward Norton dropped out, and Ang Lee destroyed it back in 2003) is our first real glimpse at what could be done with the character if handled right.   (Granted, Norton did a great job back in THE INCREDIBLE HULK…Ruffalo just calls and raises him.)   He embodies the silent, brooding scientist fighting with himself.   He knows he can’t die.   He knows he can’t get angry.   He pretty much just sits and smiles and doesn’t say much.   But when the “other guy” comes out…It. Is. On!   I don’t want to give anything away, but the things the Hulk did in those fight scenes, especially the final battle, got the crowd cheering and laughing and clapping more than anybody else in the movie. (Let’s just say he Smashed…) Here’s to hoping a HULK film is on the way…

I said it before and I’ll say it again…Joss Whedon has done the impossible.   He has created a perfectly balanced action/superhero movie not just for one hero, but for six.   He has given us a final magnificent climax over a span of almost a half hour (no quick one-two punch finish a la IRON MAN 2 here…) that holds on and never lets go.   Hell, he has even given us the first 3D post-conversation that actually looks damn good!   (Yes, that’s a real 3D recommendation from me…that’s saying something)   If you haven’t gotten your ticket for THE AVENGERS already, get it now.   Seriously…open a new tab on Firefox and buy it.   I’ll wait.   And then get two more tickets for showings later in the week.   And while you’re at it, buy me another ticket (I’ll pay for the popcorn…) This is one superhero movie you will NOT be disappointed in.

GRADE: A

Mike’s LIKES:

1) TIME PERFECTLY SPLIT: Joss Whedon is a master of timing.   Somehow, with six superheroes in one movie (a crazy feat for anyone), the man was able to give each player their due.   No one was shortchanged, no one took the lead, and everyone had their moments to remember.

2) HERO INTERACTION: Every character had their chance to interact with everyone else.   Some moments were cute, some were filled with tension, and some were all out battles.   All were memorable, and pushed the story forward well.

3) EPIC FINAL BATTLE: For a half hour, the action did not stop.   That’s all I’m giving away.   See number 4…

4) HUMOR INTERLACED THROUGH DRAMA/ACTION: Somehow, even while we were on the edge of our seats, Whedon still found the perfect moments to insert the funny.   My favorites: Shakespeare in the Park and Hulk Punch.

5) 3D: This is a first for me, but I actually recommend that you see THE AVENGERS in 3D.   Crisp, clear, and beautiful to watch, the extra layers really do add to the experience and throw you right into the battles.   (Amazing that we’re getting that feeling from a post-production conversion…)

6) EVERYTHING ELSE:   Everything above mixed together has given us one of the best superhero movies we’ve had in years.   I’ll be in line again this weekend not as a film critic, but as a fan. I suggest you do the same.

Mike’s DISLIKES:

1) NONE: Read everything above this line, and then go out and see the damn movie.

EXTRA FACTS:

1) Edward Norton was originally set to reprise his role from THE INCREDIBLE HULK, but negotiations broke down between he and Marvel Studios.

2) Director Joss Whedon says that the original cut was over three hours long. About 30 minutes of deleted scenes will be included on the DVD release, most of which revolves around Steve Rogers (Captain America). Rumored deleted scenes: Rogers struggling to adjust to the modern world in his Brooklyn apartment; Rogers’ reunion with an aged Peggy Carter, his love interest from CAPTAIN AMERICA.

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The Pentagon Has Released Official UFO Videos Because 2020 Is The Absolute Worst

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Aren’t swarms of locusts supposed to be the next installment of this plague?!

Can we finally declare 2020 as the worst year ever? In January there were fears of a third World War. In February the coronavirus began its rapid spread. In March the world essentially shut down due to social distancing and quarantining. And now in April…with only two days left in the month…we have official government footage of unidentified flying objects. I’m sorry but Milton Bradley’s game of “Life” never prepared me for any of this!

The Pentagon has confirmed the authenticity of three videos that have been circulating the web but didn’t really answer what is visible in them. In the videos, now declassified by the Department of Defense, navy pilots capture “unidentified aerial phenomena” aka unidentified flying objects aka UFOs! Pentagon officials were sure to state that the videos do not show “any sensitive capabilities or systems,” meaning we probably won’t be seeing any little green men any time soon.

The first video dates back to November 2004 and the other two from January 2015. Of the Pentagon’s confirmation of authenticity, Pentagon spokesperson Sue Gough said the videos were released “in order to clear up any misconceptions by the public on whether or not the footage that has been circulating was real, or whether or not there is more to the videos.”

So great. We now know that these strange videos are real but what exactly are we looking at? Well, the Department of Defense says it has no concrete answer as to what might be floating around the skies and has classified the phenomena as “unidentified.” And…just like that I suddenly feel less defended.

Social media is having a field day with this revelation of course. The #AliensAreReal has been trending high on Twitter since the news broke. One user referenced Independence Day and said the aliens are “getting ready for July 4th.” Of the bad timing, another wrote “Et tu aliens?” And finally one user couldn’t help avoid sarcasm and wrote”Where’s the space force when you need it?”

Well 2020, you have worked your awful black magic once again. What’s next, cat videos get banned from the internet?! You’ve taken everything else from us!

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Priest Accidentally Forgets To Turn Off Filters Before Live Streaming Mass

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The internet is having a field day with the innocent mistake of biblical proportions.

With new social distancing guidelines, many churches have closed to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. And while that doesn’t justify all the wine you’ve been chugging during your self quarantine, it does have many people practicing their faith from their homes. One Italian priest was just trying to recite a little prayer for his followers when he accidentally left a filter feature on during the broadcast! In the clip the priest is digitally adorned with a space helmet, workout gear, a fedora and sunglasses and more.

Social media went nuts for the video, which has now gone viral. One comment reads “He just doubled his holy power.” Another reads “Father, Son and Holy Influencer.” One commenter couldn’t resist a good pun and said the video is having a “Mass effect.”

Enjoy your daily blessing and take a look at the funny video below!

 

Priest in Italy live streams mass, activates filters by mistake from r/funny

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Danny DeVito Passionately Urges New Yorkers To Stay Home…And Twitter Agrees!

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For the love of Danny DeVito, stay home!

The world is in a dark place right now and I am not sure how much more bad news we can handle. That’s why when I saw Danny DeVito’s name trending on Twitter I froze. Our great nation could very well crumble if anything bad was to happen to such an icon right now. With extreme trepidation I clicked on the social media link and was relieved to see that good ol’ Danny boy is just strumming up hype because he is passionately urging New Yorkers to stay home.

Amid the coronavirus outbreak, Governor Andrew Cuomo has been driving New Yorkers to stay home and has taken every precaution short of shutting the state down completely to help prevent the virus from spreading. Because New Yorkers can be hard headed, it doesn’t hurt to have some famous friends reiterate your message. Big names like Lala Anthony, Robert De Niro and Ben Stiller have all made appearances on Cuomo’s social media pleading with New Yorker’s to heed the governors warning. Only one celebrity was able to make it to Twitter’s trending page however and that was none other than Danny DeVito. DeVito’s message is simple…stay home! In the two minute video, DeVito reminds fans that it’s not just up to the elderly to isolate themselves. “Young people can get it and they can transmit it to old people and the next thing you know – I’m out of there” says the actor. We must save him!

Twitter went into a frenzy with many users agreeing that we need to stay home for Danny. One user wrote “When Danny speaks, I listen.” Another passionately wrote “If you idiots kill Danny DeVito I SWEAR TO GOD.” One promoted DeVito from the icon status I previously awarded him and said “WE GOTTA PROTECT WORLD TREASURE DANNY DeVITO.” 

Take a look at the video below and for the love of the newly minted national treasure, stay home!

 

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