Brennan Atkins & Noah Barnes
The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) debuted in 2008 with Jon Favreau’s “Iron Man” and instantly comic fans rejoiced at what seemed to be a new age of movies for the franchise. What people might not have expected was 10 years in the same universe with 19 movies. The latest movie “Avengers: Infinity War” directed by the Russo Brothers is the culmination of what has been building up for what seems like forever.
Let’s cut to the chase – if you are a Marvel fan it is more than likely you are going to have a great time in the theater.
It has the familiar Marvel elements that people have grown to love. The action, comedy and heartfelt moments are all present in this film. The most apparent, and important difference is that there are stakes in this movie. It provides a level of tension that is essential to the film’s success, as the drama is what really captures the audience’s attention
However, the movie sacrifices structure to create this tension, and this might be what turns general audiences off from it. It isn’t quite a three-act structure, and it offers cuts to different storylines during the same movie. It’s set up as a “theatrical comic event” rather than a “comic book movie.” At times, this can help the movie, but it also hinders it at points where you just want to know what’s going on in the previous scene. On top of this, it has a pretty hefty runtime of 2 hours and 40 minutes. In a lot of the scenes, it felt as if it dragged on at times, and they could have easily just made the scenes shorter. This would have made the film more fast-paced while keeping it at a time that people actually want to sit in the theater.
“Avengers: Infinity War” takes place right after the events of “Black Panther” and it is the biggest challenge any of the heroes have had to deal with up until this point. Thanos, The Mad Titan, is in search of the six infinity stones so he can reshape the universe in his vision. Many of the stones are either in possession, or in relation, to the heroes that we have been following. This launches an all-out war between the most powerful heroes of Earth (and the guardians) and the most powerful man in the universe.
Practically every hero in the MCU is present in this movie, and while it manages to balance out these characters in a surprisingly seamless way, there’s not much to them in this movie. The heroes don’t grow, as their stories have already been told. And this might seem like a problem if it weren’t for one detail.
This is not the hero’s movie – it’s the villain’s journey.
Thanos is what makes this movie. He could arguably be one of the best CGI villains in any movie to date. Much like Killmonger from “Black Panther,” Marvel did an excellent job of making audiences aware of his motivations. The CGI on Thanos is excellent, and there was never a point in the film where it was apparent that it was not practical.
Recently, many films have done this marketing ploy by releasing movies in parts, rather than the whole movie at once. Infinity War is also a two-part movie, but it wraps up in a way that doesn’t seem like a set up for another film. It didn’t feel like there was any way to have included more in the film, and it is well worth the price of admission.
Grade: B+, “Infinity War” lays down the gauntlet for better or for worse.