Avengers: Infinity War
Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Writer: Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Don Cheadle, Tom Holland, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Dave Bautista, Zoe Saldana, Josh Brolin, Chris Pratt, Vin Diesel, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, Benedict Wong, Tom Hiddleston, Carrie Coon, Terry Notary, Tom Vaughan-Lawlor
Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures
Rated PG-13 | Minutes: 149
Release Date: April 27, 2018
It has been ten long years since Marvel Studios began its comic book movie journey. Starting the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), we have now reached Avengers: Infinity War, a one of a kind superhero ensemble film so big that it takes heroes from across the globe and the galaxy to defend and protect all life from the likes of Thanos (Josh Brolin), a powerful force who is gathering six Infinity Stones together, so that he may use them to wipe out half of humanity and bring forth balance to the universe.
Though some of these ensemble superhero films may be too big for their own good, Avengers: Infinity War finds a way to make it work. The chemistry between the cast is almost perfect, the action is superb, and the scope of the film is epic. This film is the embodiment of the can’t-miss summer movie event. And what makes this so much more different than its 18 predecessors is that it is able to make the balancing act work.
Check out my full review of Avengers: Infinity War here below.
Thanos is coming. His quest is to collect the six Infinity Stones so that he can wipe out half of humanity in order to bring forth balance within the universe. The Mad Titan sees himself as a prophet, who has seen the devastating effects of overpopulation and has taken it upon himself to use the stones to commit merciful genocide so that the populous can live. With two of the stones on Earth, it’s up to the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy to defend life itself from being destroyed with a simple snap of the fingers.
Let’s get one thing straight: Avengers: Infinity War is an indescribable epic. At the same time, the film runs at an incredibly fast pace that it almost forgets to give the audience a breather. It hits the ground running right from the start, and that can make the viewing experience a little bit exhausting. Though because of what is at stake, maybe some relief is what the film doesn’t need.
What Infinity War has plenty of is humor. The film is surprisingly funny, with characters providing plenty of back and forth banter to cut through the heavy drama that Thanos has established. Characters who have never interacted with each other before don’t quite understand how to respond to their quips, so they offer their own witty and sarcastic retorts. But the comic relief never overshadows what is at stake and when its time for the Avengers or Guardians to be heroes, they aren’t afraid to risk their lives.
While there are a lot of characters who make an appearance in the film, none of them act as a cameo or filler. When these characters do show up, they all have a purpose and an important role to play that will advance the story to the next arc.
It is those new relationships that keep the film fresh and prevent it from going stale. Because we’ve seen a lot of these relationships develop over a decade, there has never been a more entertaining interplay than the ones between the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy. Whether it’s Drax trying to understand the difference between Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) being a dude and Thor (Chris Hemsworth) being a man, or Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) trying to get Tony Stark to recognize the severity of the Thanos situation. Even Spider-Man (Tom Holland) gets to throw in a few pop culture quips. Even a few characters fawn over each other’s facial hair. But Thanos has to be the one character that stands out above all.
But the comedy never overshadows the drama. A lot of that comes through Thanos. See, the Mad Titan is not just another boring posturing Marvel villain. He sees himself as a prophet. One that could help bring balance to the universe before life itself grows out of control. He takes it upon himself to find the stones so that he can wipe out half of humanity, therefore saving it from itself. This adds more depth to the character who is willing to be the villain. Adding more complexity to the character is the fact that the film explores the relationship between himself and Gamora (Zoe Saldana). Here we see that the two characters have a very complicated history with each other. That sort of villainy is hard to come by, certainly in an MCU film, so it makes his threats very real.
That just makes the action sequences that much more epic and intense. Though there are times where it somehow manages to undercut itself by cutting to another location, thus hurting the film’s pacing, the fights and battles will still maintain a high level of excitement. There are so many slashes, laser fire, webbing, and punching and kicking going on that it’s hard to believe there is an actual dialogue in the film. Characters offer each other an assist which makes way for all kinds of fun and exhilarating combination attacks that we never thought we would ever see happen.
And a majority of that takes place in Wakanda, where Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), Okoye (Danai Gurari), and M’Baku (Winston Duke) join the rest of the Wakandan nation and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), War Machine (Don Cheadle), Bucky (Sebastian Stan), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), and Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) in an all-out battle against Thanos’ forces to protect Vision (Paul Bettany). It’s so massive that it looked like it was ripped out of the comics or inspired by a battle sequence in Lord of the Rings.
Since there are a lot of moving parts to the film, it makes it a bit difficult to keep up with everything that is going on. Characters are all in different locations across the galaxy, and yet, the Russo Brothers were able to make Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely‘s script work. A lot of that has to do with the already charming cast and their chemistry with each other. Though I suspect some will be disappointed by the lack of certain matchups.
For the past ten years, we’ve been so invested with what is going on with these characters. We’ve seen the rise and fall, and through it all, we’ve stood by them. Which is why it may be that much harder to accept that the film ends on such a jarring and inconclusive note. Still, this is a movie for the fans. And the fans will get what they deserve. One rollicking epic that will assuredly stir up all kinds of emotions. How you walk out of that theater after watching it will be up to you.
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