This past Saturday I went with some friends to see a movie about which much ink has already been spilled: The Avengers, a superhero movie of epic proportions. Since reviews of the movie are already plenteous, I will be brief.
The story revolves around six Marvel Comics superheroes–Ironman, Thor, Captain America, the Hulk, Black Widow, and Hawkeye. Their mission is to save the world from the diabolical Norse god Loki. For a movie that blends many disparate elements the film is surprisingly cohesive. In what other movie can one find a Norse-armor-clad hero wielding his hammer alongside a very hip inventor in a robotic exoskeleton, both on the same mission as a patriotic, clean-cut World War II super-soldier? All in all, the mish-mash turned out better than I expected.
Content-wise, the movie is full of comic-book violence–punching, kicking, stabbing, etc., but manages to keep from being very graphic. There is a small amount of profanity–I can only remember one instance, but surprisingly not a one of the characters takes God’s name in vain.
The action sequences are fabulous, if perhaps a bit drawn-out (but after all the hype, would I have been satisfied with a shorter concluding action sequence?….nah). Visual effects are top-notch. Lots of big orange explosions. Acceptable plot, interesting characters. Though I doubt anyone could dig up an overarching message for The Avengers, there are some good sub-themes about courage, self-sacrifice, etc. We see the heroes of the movie putting themselves at risk to save others. What’s more Christian than that?
So here’s a question I’ve been chewing on: could a Christian, in good conscience, have made a movie like this? If not, why not? If so, is there anything a Christian screenwriter/director might have done differently?