Avengers Infinity War
After 10 years and an impressive slate of comic book movies, the grinning mad titan has finally arrived in cinemas to bring destruction to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is wildly impressive that an after credit scene in the first Avengers film has finally reached its zenith. Somehow, the movie with a generous run time of 2 hours and 40 minutes is jam packed with every exciting morsel of fun that Marvel offers. This review will give some general impressions of the movie, but will not delve into any spoilers. Thanos Demands Silence and we respect the cosmic overlord’s wishes.
Two years after the Avengers were torn apart during the events of Captain America: Civil War, Thanos arrives on Earth to collect the Infinity Stones for a gauntlet that will allow him to bend reality to his will. The Avengers must join forces with the Guardians of the Galaxy to stop him before his onslaught of destruction puts an end to half the universe.
Watching the heroes of different cinematic realms interact is phenomenal. Comic fans always salivate over the latest crossover, and this movie does not disappoint. For viewers that thought the airport scene is cinematic heaven, just wait until the Wakanda battle here. The Russo brothers excel at dissecting major battle scenes with wholly memorable set pieces that add character and depth to each of the major players in the Marvel universe.
The real star of this movie is Thanos (played by Josh Brolin). We’ve waited years for this antagonist to finally make his approach on our heroes, and it was well worth the wait. Brolin steals every scene he has with a Zen path of destruction. Thanos’ philosophy sort of reminded me of the dynamic Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant had with Phil Jackson. Both of these aggressive and dominant superstars thrived under a system coached by a follower of the restorative Buddhist meditation and practices. In a similar way, Thanos’ violent urges fulfill his destiny to attain his next level of “peace.” Perhaps, what’s more surprising is the emotional toll that Thanos will likely have on viewers, garnering a reaction that could rival Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger.
Early missteps of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that focused on a seemingly endless supply of meaningless MacGuffins, reaches its breaking point in this entry. In a way, this movie’s saving grace is the unbelievable, once-in-a-lifetime interactions, rather than a deeply compelling plot. In a way, this movie is much more successful than The Last Jedi in replicating the utter hopelessness from Empire Strikes Back that films crave to replicate. However, the MCU has created its own standards of movie-making excellence that keeps ratcheting up expectations with each sequel. The ultimate take-away will likely be audience’s responses to the flow of comic books. Individual issues (and even whole arcs) can comprise dream team-ups and epic villain encounters to critical praise, even though there remains a lack of cerebral challenges.
Overall, Infinity War is a tremendous triumph for all fans of the comics and the Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. Cinematically, the spectacle, intense action and the ending will keep everyone talking about the Marvel brand until the next Avengers film. However, some critics will cry that this accomplishment is somewhat of a step back after the astounding successes of Spiderman: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarock and Black Panther. Ultimately, these astounding crossover movies need to be judged separately from a traditional movie’s narrative, and it is not necessarily a debilitating restraint that the movie has a Part I tendency.
(True-believers, look for a more spoiler-filled review after opening weekend)