With apologies to a certain Marvel supervillain who's not in the film, Joss Whedon has hit a bull's-eye with The Avengers.
Marvel's highly anticipated first outing for its band of superheroes known as S.H.I.E.L.D.—directed by the man who brought you TV's Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Serenity—isn't out in theaters yet, but it's already a big hit with critics.
E! News has a roundup of the early reviews, which by the sound of them, should guarantee Hollywood will be off to a stellar start at the box office this summer when The Avengers unspools May 4.
One reviewer extolled the film for infusing its characters with unexpected depth.
White did, however, take issue with the constraints imposed by the movie's genre.
"Unfortunately, this being a comic-book movie, the need for biff-bang-pow tends to prevail," he adds. "The hero-against-hero slugfest that the comics have been trading on for decades is entertaining at first, but the various combinations of Hulk v Thor v Iron Man quickly blow themselves out."