You know what makes me angry? The fact that Avengers: Age of Ultron could have been so much more than what we got. The only thing neccessary would have been one important element: Consequence of Choices.
Granted, Age of Ultron uses this sub-context already heavily in its plot. For example, Natasha has to live with the consequences of her training, Bruce has to live with the consequence of him turning into “Bad Hulk”. But strangely enough, when the plot called for a memorable illustration of the consequence of choices the most, the filmmakers chickened out. So, which moment in the movie do I mean? It’s when the Helicarrier suddenly arrives in the last moment as a perfect deus ex machina to save the day and every person on the floating island.
Just imagine if the helicarrier wouldn’t habe arrived to save the day. Imagine a team of superheroes having to make a decision, a decision with consequences: “We have to destroy the island before it hits the ground. And we have to kill everybody still remaining on the island by doing so. And this is a decision we have to make”. This simple difference would have given Age of Ultron emotional and moral weight. This simple difference would have given something to the Marvel Cinematic Universe that goes beyond popcorn entertainment, where seemingly nothing is of consequence and – for example – almost no major character ever dies.
The more I think about it the angrier I get, because the possiblities would have been endless. Imagine a devastated Tony who saved the world by having to make a decision, a decision which was forced on him by himself by creating Ultron. Consequently, the team would certainly have been shattered as trust and teamwork no longer would have been possible. In fact, it might have even resulted in the team seeing Tony as a possible enemy because he acted on impulse without asking everybody and without thinking about possible … consequences.
Man, Age of Ultron could have become the perfect second movie of a trilogy by being the absolute low point where all hope is lost and the Avengers have to live with that one consequence at the end of the movie.
Oh, and by the way: The fact that Thanos makes an appearance also solidifies the fast food feeling of Age of Ultron because it basically tells us one thing: Everything that happened is more or less of no consequence because the big bad guy is only now starting to act and therefore everything up to that point is only a prelude.