“We’re in the Endgame now.” – Dr. Strange (Avengers: Infinity War)
In 2008, Marvel Studios embarked upon a grand experiment with IRON MAN. Though it was a stand-alone film, recurring characters, objects and baddies gradually hinted at a huge interconnected universe – the Marvel Cinematic Universe, or, the MCU. The experiment has been leading to this one story of heroes banding together to battle the ultimate warlord, Thanos, in AVENGERS: ENDGAME. So the big question is, can Marvel Studios really bring a satisfying conclusion to a story that spans 22 films and 11 years? The short answer – YES! In three hours, ENDGAME delivers an epic, emotional, crazy, jaw-dropping conclusion while rewarding audiences who have invested their time and emotions into this universe.
Character arcs and story references go all the way back to many of the character’s original films. In fact, I suggest a rewatch of all 21 films just to have them fresh in your head as you prepare for ENDGAME. Diehard Marvel fans will appreciate the attention to detail when it comes to callouts to bits of dialogue from past films, character relationships and comic book references.
As for plot, I do not want to give much away, but having seen AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR you can probably guess which way it’s headed. Basically, Thanos has snapped his fingers and half of all living beings were wiped out in an effort to clean up the world. Now what? How do the surviving heroes regroup? How do they deal with loss? Now that Thanos has all the Infinity Stones, now what? And how does the newest MCU hero, CAPTAIN MARVEL, fit in? All these questions come to an absolutely satisfying conclusion by the end of the film.
Did it need to be three hours? Probably not. The film is a slow build as it continues to build upon character and their progression. ENDGAME could/should be the second part of an Infinity War trilogy. It was so dense with so many spinning plates and stories to keep track of – not only what was happening in this film, but how it related to all the storylines and characters of the previous 21 MCU films. There needed to be a break where you could process the dense story and lore and then digest it.
As for tone, like all Marvel movies ENDGAME mixes high stakes and emotions with action and that classic Marvel humor we’ve come to know and love. For example, the admiration for Captain America’s ass, even by himself, punches up a scene and we did more than just smile and nod.
If you are looking for a CAPTAIN MARVEL, part 2, this is not that film. While Captain Marvel is instrumental among the superheroes, she does not appear for the bulk of the plot. ENDGAME especially focuses on the original five Avengers – Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow, Hulk and Hawkeye. It is a love letter to these five in particular.
The directing team of the Russo brothers along with producer Kevin Feige have managed to keep one powerful story of heroism, family and humanity in a comprehensive saga. As this saga wraps up, you will feel like you’ve been on this adventure fighting alongside Iron Man, Thor, Black Widow, Captain America, and the other umpteen heroes. AVENGERS: ENDGAME arrives in U.S. theaters April 26th. And when you leave the theater…for heaven’s sake, #DontSpoilTheEndgame!!
AVENGERS ENDGAME concludes an epic 22-film saga and arrives in U.S. theaters April 26th. I’ll be there cheering, gasping and laughing with all of you. And when you leave the theater…for heaven’s sake, #DontSpoilTheEndgame!!