Avengers: Endgame review
Has the Marvel Cinematic Universe surpassed Star Wars when it comes to cultural icons? I would make the argument. I see more people wearing shirts of the Marvel heroes, kids are playing with the toys, adults still read the comics, and have several theme park attractions (at both Disney and Universal!). Even when it comes to content, Marvel has made more movies then Star Wars(compare Star Wars to its nine and the MCU's 23). The other piece of magic it has that no money could ever buy is its staying power. A lot like how Star Wars will continue to be introduced to new generations, the same will go for the MCU.
Marvel also gave us one of the most talked about movies of last year, Avengers: Endgame. Most people I know, even my parents who don't watch superhero movies, were blown away with how much was thrown at them with action humor, and a shockingly bleak ending with half of life being erased and the villain winning. So how was Disney going to top it off in the next part? It's safe the say the Russo brothers did a phenomenal job showing where to go next in Avengers: Endgame. Is it perfect? For the most part.
After Iron Man and Nebula are brought back to Earth by Captain Marvel, the surviving Avengers manage to track Thanos to try and undo the snap. Though they kill him, they also see that the stones were destroyed with the snap, thus making the snap permanent. Five years passes as the Earth and the rest of the universe cope with half of life gone. Some have moved on while others haven't. Iron Man has settled down with a family, Wakanda is without a king, many of the cosmic characters like Rocket Raccoon and Captain Marvel are dealing with the problems of space, Thor has become a fat drunk, Bruce Banner and Hulk have merged, and Captain America continues to cope with the fact he's more alone then ever.
An new way to fix things comes in the answer of Scott Lang/Ant-Man who reveals that even though he was stuck in the quantum realm for five years, it only felt like five minutes to him. Seeing that time works and manipulates different at that level, the avengers convince Stark to help build a machine to shrink everyone. The goal is to split into teams and get the stones before Thanos does. It's a time heist to restore life and maybe get a second shot at defeating Thanos.
Without revealing too much, Avengers: Endgame delivered more then I anticipated. This brings the infinity saga to a proper close that was started in Iron Man. Is it flawless? I wouldn't say that. But let's get to the good stuff first.
The story and tone of the movie is great. This is a true epic that despite running over three hours, it doesn't feel like it. They could have added another half hour, but I probably wouldn't notice. Yes, there are a lot of slow burn moments like when the characters go through their struggles of lost friends, time travel, and fights, but all of it feels earned. I give credit to the script for still having some of the best "tongue-in-cheek" jokes in the series, and putting them in the story that's the most dramatic and somber.
Like in Infinity War, the action is phenomenal. In fact, I don't even want to give it away, but with how the final act is set, it is a moment of movie magic that'll be remembered as much as the Death Star run in Star Wars and the ring being destroyed in Lord of the Rings. Every hero gets their shot and each one feels epic.
If the movie is flawed, its with the pacing. I don't mind a time jump, but not everything feels like an impact as the movie thinks it does. For example, when we see the Hulk, even though the effect is funny, I would have liked to have seen how he got there. Same thing for Hawkeye, Iron Man, and the cosmic characters. This is an instance where an extended cut would be welcome. Things flows better once the time heist plot starts and keeps it for the majority of the movie.
I'll give four and a half infinity gauntlet comics out of five. This is the moment where the orchestra plays it's big number. This is level eight of the Super Mario Bros. This is an awesome finale to a story that I don't know how Marvel and Disney are going to top this…nor do I think they ever will. If you haven't seen Infinity War yet, be sure to do before watching this. Endgame serves as a nice bookend to the series and I think everyone will be happy with this.