Age of Ultron moonwalks assuredly past Second Album Syndrome, but doesn’t get to be the Avengers’ The Empire Strikes Back. It’s a barnstorming cyclone of spectacle, yet never manages to recapture how epic its first outing felt.

The sequel’s only surprise is how formulaic it is, especially considering it’s from a studio forged from a game of movie poker. Age of Ultron is safe on a Fort Knox-style level.

Is this a bad thing? Not necessarily. Don’t expect anything more than Marvel-brand enjoyment, and this will be the most fun you’ll have in the cinema this summer.

Age of Ultron has gloomier veins and deeper belly laughs, but The Avengers was an event. This is a blockbuster. A good blockbuster, but the difference between the two remains.



CAST: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Cobie Smulders, Anthony Mackie, Hayley Atwell, Idris Elba, Stellan Skarsgård, James Spader, Samuel L. Jackson

DIRECTOR: Joss Whedon

WRITER: Joss Whedon 

SYNOPSIS: When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and it is up to the Avengers to stop the villainous Ultron from enacting his terrible plans.

A preview screening of Avengers: Age of Ultron was kindly provided by Disney and Organic Publicity.