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Age of Ultron: Marvel’s latest reunion tour

Avenge (verb) 1: inflict harm in return for an injury or wrong done to oneself or another. 2: what Joss Whedon continues to do to Fox since the canceling of “Firefly.”

Joss Whedon’s latest attempt to bankrupt the nerd population, “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” opens today nationwide. Having already broken several box office records overseas, “AoU” has hit harder than Hulk watching the first Hulk movie. It’s ok, Big Green, no one counts that one.

“Age of Ultron” is expected to top all box office records established previously by movies like “Titanic,” “Avatar” and the first “Avengers,” and I can see why.

Unlike the first movie’s new team dynamic, “Age of Ultron shows a team that has worked together and with great success. Each uses his or her strengths to fill rolls executed to perfection. It’s obvious that this team is a unit of, not just soldiers, but friends that are willing to overlook past character flaws in favor of that friendship.

But inevitably, it’s those very flaws that form the backbone of this movie, and probably the Marvel Movie Universe for years to come. In his haste to protect the world from the boogiemen of space, Tony Stark creates Ultron. Bruce Banner/Hulk and Black Widow are having trouble dealing with the possibility that they are worthy of happiness. Thor is a ruler, but has been away from home for some time. Captain America is a soldier without a war, so is he a soldier?

Unlike the first Avengers movie, Hawkeye’s character development matters in “Age of Ultron” and affects each of his teammates, helping reach a deeper narrative than just “HULK SMASH!”

Is it all touchy feely with brooding faces and grey tones (aka. Nolanized)? HECK NO! All the punching, shooting, smashing, fast whit and funny encounters Whedon is known for are brought forward and do not disappoint.

The movie over-all doesn’t have the amusement park ride feel of the original, but it’s still a ride well worth the price of admission.

I’m getting back in line to go again! Class dismissed.