The Avengers (film)

The Avengers is a 1998 action-thriller film starring Uma Thurman, Sean Connery and Ralph Fiennes, based on the long running 1960s British television series The Avengers, and directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik. The John Steed of the original series, Patrick Macnee, makes a pseudo-cameo as the voice of Invisible Jones. The Avengers was produced by Jerry Weintraub and written by Don MacPherson, for Warner Bros. Pictures.

The Avengers theatrical poster 1998

Plot

After a secret meteorological installation and program, 'Prospero', is sabotaged, 'Mother' (Jim Broadbent), the head of Britain's covert, top secret agency, The Ministry, calls on dapper agent John Steed (Ralph Fiennes) to investigate. In doing so, Steed meets Mrs. Emma Peel (Uma Thurman), a martial arts expert and doctor of meteorological science who happens to appear on the surveillance videotape as the culprit responsible for the sabotage. Claiming innocense, she and Steed set out to uncover what's going on, but 'Father' (Fiona Shaw), the blind, second in command at the Ministry, doesn't trust Peel.

They soon discover that a wealthy and eccentric former Ministry member, Sir August De Wynter (Sean Connery), is controlling the weather over Britain. In doing so, he has enacted a brilliant plan to extort the riches of every nation or else face the wrath of mother -- or in this case -- father nature. As they track down and battle Wynter and his right-hand thug, Bailey (Eddie Izzard), with the help of Alice (Eileen Atkins), a Ministry veteran, Steed and Peel do what they can to stop Wynter and his plan.

Influence of the television series

Many of the scenes and ideas in the movie also featured in episodes of the original series or The New Avengers, although it is unclear to what extent this was deliberate and how much was simple coincidence. A segment in which Emma is trapped inside a house with an ever-changing floor plan was, however, clearly based upon the original series episode 'The House That Jack Built'. Also, the 'villain who wants to control the weather' plot was borrowed from an episode featuring Diana Rigg's Mrs. Peel called 'A Surfeit of H20'.

Cast

  • Ralph Fiennes - John Steed
  • Uma Thurman - Emma Peel
  • Sean Connery - Sir August de Wynter
  • Patrick Macnee - Invisible Jones (voice)
  • Jim Broadbent - Mother
  • Fiona Shaw - Father
  • Eddie Izzard - Bailey
  • Eileen Atkins - Alice
  • John Wood - Trubshaw
  • Carmen Ejogo - Brenda
  • Keeley Hawes - Tamara
  • Shaun Ryder - Donavan
  • Nicholas Woodeson - Dr. Darling
  • Michael Godley - Butler
  • Richard Lumsden - Boodle's Porter
  • Daniel Crowder - Messenger
  • Nadim Sawalha - World Council of Ministers
  • Christopher Godwin - World Council of Ministers
  • David Webber - World Council of Ministers

Bibliography

  • Cartmell, Deborah; Hunter, I. Q.; and Whelehan, Imelda (2001) Retrovision: Reinventing the Past in Film and Fiction. London: Pluto Press. ISBN 0-7453-1583-6
  • Macnee, Patrick (2008) The Avengers: the Inside Story. London: Titan. ISBN 1-84576-643-1
  • Osgerby, Bill; and Gough-Yates, Anna (2001) Action TV: Tough-Guys, Smooth Operators and Foxy Chicks. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-22620-1

External links

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