Monday, September 1, 2008

DVD Review: Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow

For those hoping for a second sequel to Ultimate Avengers: The Movie, you're outta luck. Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow shares no continuity with previous Marvel animated films, and is decidedly aimed toward the younger spectrum of comic book fans, sort of like the Marvel Adventures comics. The backstory is that the Avengers were defeated and killed by the evil supercomputer called Ultron. One of the survivors, Tony Stark/Iron Man (Tom Kane), smuggles the children of the Avengers to safety. These children are James Rogers (Noah Crawford), son of Captain America and the Black Widow, Torunn (Brenna O'Brien), daughter of Thor, Azari (Dempsey Pappion), son of the Black Panther and Storm, and Pym (Aidan Drummond), son of Giant-man and the Wasp. Iron Man raises the children in a secret base in the Arctic Circle. 13 years later, the children have grown and developed their powers and skills. Unfortunately they inadvertently give away their bases position and are discovered by Ultron, who by now has conquered half the planet. Iron Man is captured, by the kids manage to escape with the aid of the damages android Vision (Shawn MacDonald). Encountering and enlisting the help of an aging Hulk (Fred Tatasciore), and the rebel leader son (Adrian Petriw) of the archer Hawkeye, these young heroes must rescue their mentor and stop Ultron, before he completely conquers the world.

The Pros: If you're into comic books this movie shouldn't bore you too much. Like most films based on comics, there of a number of references and in-jokes for fans (Jocasta cameos as a base computer, the Savage Land is mentioned, etc.) As usual, there's plenty of action, albeit tame action, but still enjoyable. Part of the plot even involves fighting Iron man robot versions of the original Avengers. The Hulk is sporting the old-and-grey look from Incredible Hulk: The End, which looks pretty cool, though certain shot look very cartoonish. The animation quality hasn't gone down since the other animated Marvel movies, though it isn't as spectacular on the whole. This whole story is very much in the spirit of other team super teams, such as the Teen Titans and the Power Pack, so if you were a fan of those franchises, you should enjoy this.

The Cons: Obviously this film is far tamer than other Marvel Animation works, seeing as it's their first PG-rated film (all the others were PG-13). Thus all real sense of danger is eliminated. No real violence here, just kid-friendly smash-fests and explosions. They're not even allowed to use the word "kill" or show anyone dying (except robots). Most of the dialogue is just fair to corny, and none of the jokes are really laugh-out-loud funny.

The End: In 2005, Marvel started a comic series called Young Avengers, featuring teen heroes who based their identities on the Avengers. Though that may have inspired this movie, they are nothing alike, in either story of tone. This actually has more in common with A-Next, a comic starring the Avengers' successors in an alternate future. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but personally would like to have seen the Young Avengers more. Rating this against Marvel's other animated features, this is definitely not their best. Not terrible by any stretch of the imagination, but not their best. Certainly worth renting, but I personally wont be preordering this on Amazon.

Overall, I rate Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow as a 6 out of 10.

Click here to visit the official website for Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow.

1 comment:

Kal said...

I think you were fair to it. In the end your thought that it is worth renting is a better recommendation than I gave it. But we agree, not Marvel's best by a long shot.

We like a lot of kids animation because it is filled with good guys and bad guys and you can sit back and enjoy the fun. However we had a hard time doing that in this case.

We felt as though they crushed on the originals for no other reason than to launch these juvenile wanna-bes.

Anyway, here is our take on it with lots of pics and a few bits if wit if you are interested: