Avengers Assemble – The longer version

The Marvel film franchise has been a bit up and down. Mostly up, but a couple of the films didn’t impress me as much as they could of done. I loved Iron Man and Captain America, but thought Iron Man 2 finished a bit too quickly, almost as if they’d run out of film (or disk space), Thor never really grabbed me, and The Incredible Hulk, while being a vast improvement on Hulk, didn’t quite hit the spot.

Now it’s the turn of all of the cast, plus a few we haven’t seen before, to take centre stage with Avengers Assemble, or The Avengers as it’s known to the rest of the world. This sees Iron Man, Black Widow, Hulk, Captain America, Hawkeye, and Thor teamed up to, as you’d expect, save the world from a nasty person, in this case Loki.

The film follows the traditional “they’re winning, they’re losing, they’re winning again, oh no they’re losing, oh look they’ve won” path, but follows it well. Bruce Banner is played by yet another actor which is a little disconcerting, but in the end it all works out. Plenty of action, plenty of laughs, plenty to like. When is the Blu-ray out?

A new camera?

I have too many cameras, but I still want another one.

A few years ago I bought an Olympus E-P1, the first of the Olympus Pen cameras, and one of the first of a new style of cameras known variously as EVIL (Electronic Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens), MILC (Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera), or CSC (Compact System Camera). It’s a lovely little camera, particularly with the Panasonic 20/1.7 lens sat on the front, but it’s not particularly good at higher ISOs and doesn’t have a flash.

Roll on a few years and Olympus announce the OM-D range, supposedly a modern take on the old OM bodies, the first of which is the E-M5. High ISO looks a lot better, and it comes with an external flash. There are also some very nice lenses for m4/3 available these days.

However Fujifilm throw a spanner in the works with the X-Pro1. I already have a Fujifilm X10 which is superb. The X-Pro1 looks fantastic, and from the samples the image quality is excellent, and more importantly far better than the E-M5. However it’s pricey. The body alone is more than the cost of the E-M5 kit with a 12-50 lens, and there are only three lenses available at the moment, 18mm, 35mm, and a 60mm Macro (27, 53, and 90mm equivalents). More lenses are lined up, including a couple of zoom lenses, but some of these won’t be available until next year, so potentially 18 months away.

For roughly similar prices, I could get the X-Pro1 with 18mm and 35mm lenses, or an E-M5 with 12-50, 12mm, 25mm, and 45mm lenses (24-100, 24mm, 50mm, and 90mm equivalents).

My heart says get the X-Pro1, it looks good, and the images look excellent.

My head says get the E-M5. m4/3 is an established system, it’s cheaper to buy a better setup, and we have no idea if the Fujifilm X-Pro lens mount will be a success and still exist in the future.

My wallet says do nothing and save the money, but I rarely listen to my wallet.

However both cameras are new, the X-Pro1 has only been out a matter of weeks, and the E-M5 has been delayed until later this month, so the sensible option is to sit tight for a month or two and see what happens to the prices, we may start to see decent discounts on the X-Pro1 making it a more realistic option.