'The Avengers' shatters box office records, and it's terrific

'The Avengers' shatters box office records, and it's terrific

Film is a huge hit with critics and moviegoers

You know all the hype that's surrounded The Avengers movie? I just left the theater, and I can tell you that in my humble opinion, it's deserved. I haven't had that much fun watching a movie in a long time. It's a shining example, to me, of what a great Hollywood blockbuster film should be: a star-studded, action-packed thrill ride.

I've said many times that I'm no big fan of 3-D, but I splurged on The Avengers, seeing it in IMAX 3-D. It was worth every single hard-earned penny. Judging from the sold-out theaters here, I figured this film would take in big bucks at the box office, but I had no idea it would shatter records. We truly do love our superheroes!

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According to the latest weekend box office figures, The Avengers made just over $200 million, making it the biggest movie opening ever in North America. As in, it pulverized the previous record holder, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (which took in just over $169 million last July). Yes, I thought The Avengers would do really well -- but that well?!? That's just mind-blowing.

It's a safe bet that the folks at Disney are thrilled with the decision to buy Marvel. According to The Hollywood Reporter, The Avengers could gross upwards of $1 billion worldwide. At last check, The Avengers has made nearly $642 million globally. That $1 billion could come quickly.

I don't want to give away any plot spoilers for The Avengers, so let's just say it's a really solid action movie with a phenomenal cast of characters that we've all grown to love over the years (Ironman, Captain America, Thor and yes, the Hulk). Going in, I really wasn't sure this film could surpass Ironman as my favorite -- but guess what? It totally did.

It will be interesting to see whether The Dark Knight Rises can beat The Avengers in terms of box office success, but if these new Avengers numbers are any indication, 2012 is The Year of the Superhero Movie and then some.