Stuff I Like - The Avengers

It is Friday, which means I am doing a Friday Flop. Tonight, let us discuss The Avengers. No, not those Avengers. These ones.

Why? That's... that's a good question. The Avengers is not a good film. The thing of it is, you can sort of see where it could have been good. If you squint. According to the IMDB trivia, after a test screening went badly, the studio executives decided to chop almost half an hour out of the film and release it in August. The reasoning there is... flawed. "The audience didn't like the movie! Quick! Shorten it so we can squeeze in more screenings!"

As it is, the film is frustrating but fascinating. For instance, here is the theme to the original TV series.

Sprightly, isn't it? Puts some pep in your step! Gets you energized for whatever's about to happen! Now, here's how the film starts...

...huh? Sorry, I nodded off, what was I talking ab--oh, The Avengers, right.

The finished product is just so odd. You can see the places where an amusing comedy tries to shine through. And there is unparalleled weirdness in the sight of Ralph Fiennes as a smiling, forthright action hero.

I think mostly I'm writing about this film because I have so many questions. Why would you cast Eddie Izzard as a character who doesn't talk, when that guy is so very good at talking? Was it embarassing when Diana Rigg said "Yeahhh, I've got other things to do that day: when they asked her to film a cameo? You guys had a chance to cast Emma Thompson and didn't take it? And what the hell is this?!

Poor Sean Connery. Turned down Gandalf in The Lord of the RIngs, turned down Morpheus in The Matrix... said yes to this. But hey, at least one of those teddy bear suits found a good home on another Jeremiah Chechik project... The Middleman!

Like a circle in a circle, like a wheel within a wheel.

My point, insofar as I do have one, is that while The Avengers isn't a good movie, it is an eminently watchable one. Check it out the next time it rolls around on cable, it'll scratch that Flash Gordon/Street Fighter itch. And hey, Warner Brothers, you've got the Warner Archive for a reason. Let Chechik put his cut back together and throw it up for download. I'll buy it.