THE AVENGERS (2012 film)

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AVENGERS, THE. Joss Whedon, dir., script, co-story with Zak Penn, from the Marvel comics by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. USA: Marvel Studios, Paramount Pictures (prod.) / Walt Disney Studios (US theatrical dist.), 2012. James Chinlund, prod. design. Susan Pickett, visual effects producer.

There is, of course, the full range of war toys, from knives to a missile-borne atomic bomb to a supergigantic hovercraft jet carrier (i.e., carrying jet aircraft and propelled in part by jet engines). More significant, the Avengers themselves cover the technological range from The Hulk for the "null case" — untechnological — through Thor's lightning-powered hammer to Hawkeye's semi-magical bow and arrows (with a quiver of cornucopian delights and capacity that can compete with any Western 400-shot six-gun or war-flick unlimited-capacity magazine for automatic weapons) to the super-high-tech of Iron Man. Note alien technology imaged as a cyborg combination of fairly shiny heavy metal with skeletal imagery suggesting reconstructed giant dinosaur fossils and fossilized dragons (of the flying sort: whatever they are, they fly — with smaller versions for both the two-creature vehicles for the alien … "aerial mechanized cavalry" (?) and for the aliens. Premise includes a "tesseract" device that opens a portal that acts as a wormhole to distant realms of some variety, though related to Asgard, in its Marvel Comics version. [1] The villainous Loki carries a bladed ray-gun that is a combination light pike, scepter, and mind-control device, contrasted with Thor's hammer in ways unreconstructed Freudians might wish to study. For the aliens and alien weapon imagery, cf. and contrast the Aliens in the ALIEN series: the idea is similar, but the AVENGER aliens are desiccated rather than mucoid in their threat.

5. DRAMA, RDE, 07/V/12, 7July17