Keeping in line with the demands of Thanos, this review will be spoiler free.
Touted as the most ambitious crossover event in history, the ultimate culmination of ten years and 18 movies, “Avengers Infinity War” has generated massive amounts of hype leading up to its release. With expectations this high, the Russo brothers — the directors of the film — had to get it just right.
“Infinity War” was dark. With Avengers facing their greatest threat yet, it should be. From the very first scene, the tone was set for the rest of the movie. Characters are forced to make universe-altering decisions, and the consequences for their actions are very real.
The comparison is made far too frequently, but this really is “The Empire Strikes Back” of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. There were still moments of humor, as are found in the rest of the MCU, but the jokes never upset the tone.
Even after his initial reveal in 2012’s “Avengers” and various cameo appearances, there was still uncertainty if the build up to Thanos would payoff. That worry was for nothing, as the character was well fleshed out, and almost humanized, taking up a large part of the movie’s run time. Even through the layers of motion capture and CGI, Josh Brolin’s performance was great as well. The Mad Titan’s Black Order, Ebony Maw especially, were a menacing force, able to stand toe-to-toe with, and even take down Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
It was truly an amazing spectacle to see so many of the Avengers in the same movie. Not everyone made the cut, but those that did all had their chance to shine. Iron Man’s had his coolest armor yet, T’Challa’s charisma lead the Avengers and Wakanda in battle, and Captain America grew a beard. Not to mention that the Guardians of the Galaxy played a major role in the film, surprisingly with Gamora in the spotlight.
Now ten years into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, there were so many jaw-dropping and surreal moments in “Infinity War.” Never before would I have thought there would ever be a movie featuring not just Spider-Man and Captain America, but also Rocket Raccoon and a teenage Groot. So many times I found myself thinking, “I can’t believe they just did that!” There were more than enough twists and turns to the plot to keep the audience on their toes.
The movie toed the line perfectly when delivering fan-service. There were tons of easter eggs and references to the “Infinity Gauntlet” source material for the more dedicated fans to get excited about. If you weren’t, nothing would have been confusing, everything that needed to be explained to a more casual audience member was.
There was more than enough action to go around in “Infinity War,” almost every other scene was packed with awesome and creative fights. The battle in Wakanda was particularly well done, capturing the same feeling as a battle from Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” trilogy. Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange had some of the most visually impressive fights, the Sorcerer Supreme conjuring every spell he could to stop Thanos.
After some very poor CGI work in the third act of “Black Panther,” there was the fear that it would carry over into “Infinity War.” Thankfully the CGI was not only better than “Black Panther’s,” but probably the best work done by Marvel Studios yet.
The movie’s structure started off a tad weak, jumping around from various separate but still interconnected chapters. That said, with a cast as large as “Infinity War’s” some pacing issues were to be expected, which were fortunately resolved around halfway through the movie.
Alan Silvestri’s score was fantastic, increasing the impact of every scene. After “Infinity War,” it’s safe to say that his “Avengers” theme will stand alongside other iconic cinematic themes like John Williams’ “Star Wars” and “Superman,” or Danny Elfman’s “Batman.”
“Avengers: Infinity War” certainly lived up the hype, and has cemented its place as the greatest crossover event of all time, with its only potential usurper the currently untitled “Avengers 4.” The worst part of the movie is the fact that we have to wait another whole year to get the conclusion to this era of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Satisfies its insanely high expectations
Every Avenger gets their moment
Thanos is a menacing villain
Pacing issues in the first half