Hulk and Iron Man go head to head in apocalyptic ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ trailer

My first impression of the new “Avengers: Age Of Ultron” trailer is that Joss Whedon appears to have taken some of the criticisms of his shooting style on the first film to heart. Even as the film became one of the biggest hits of all time, I read plenty of comments about how Whedon's eye still seemed more suited to the small screen than to movie theaters.

That does not appear to be a problem on “Age Of Ultron.”

“I'm going to show you something beautiful…”

Ominous, making great use of a widescreen frame for images both massive and intimate, and unafraid to hint at some of the film's truly outrageous scale, this “Age Of Ultron” trailer is pretty much exactly what it needs to be as Disney prepares to try to follow up the phenomenon of the first movie.

Next week, I'll be publishing an interview with Robert Downey Jr. and Mark Ruffalo from the London set of “Age Of Ultron,” and I think it's going to be a lot of fun to finally be able to start talking about some of what I know about this film. I am a firm believer at this point. They are making something special, and Joss Whedon has poured every bit of that considerable brain of his into making this chapter of the giant ongoing Marvel movie universe into the most painful, the most thrilling, and the most personal one so far.

“Personal” is a key word to consider, too. Look carefully at the images in this trailer. New character Wanda, aka The Scarlet Witch, is played by Elizabeth Olsen, and she has a knack for provoking other characters, reaching into them and pushing buttons that play right to the heart of who these people are. If your worst fear was made manifest and put right in front of you, and you just happened to have super-powers, the results could be very, very bad.

We're reaching a point with these films where there is enough history that we have with the characters and the actors playing them in these particular incarnations that Whedon can start to really toy with those affections. hen I wrote about an early version of this trailer at Comic-Con this year, one of the things I commented on in particular was the eerie cover version of “I've Got No Strings” that is used throughout, and the immediate suggestion of a relationship between Stark and Ultron that is like a perverted Pinocchio story. James Spader is starting to sound like a positively inspired choice for the voice of Stark's most unruly creation, and Ultron comes across from this trailer as a villain truly suitable for a story of this size.

We've got a long way to go before May, when we get to see this one in the US, but there are plenty of secrets the film still has at its disposal. I love that there's not a single frame of The Vision in this trailer. There's an entire character they haven't even begun to introduce. So don't worry… if you look at this and feel like you saw a bunch of the good parts already, you're fine. “Avengers: Age Of Ultron” is going to be one of the biggest films of 2015, and they're only beginning to hint at what there is in store for audiences.

“Avengers: Age Of Ultron” opens May 1, 2015.