Avengers: Endgame is breaking box-office records around the world. At this point, the release of a Marvel superhero film has become an event. Unlike many other movies these days, when viewers are content to wait for a home video, on demand or streaming release, audiences flock to see these films on the big screen. In the eleven years since the original Iron Man opened in 2008, the studio has built a “Cinematic Universe” across twenty-two movies, culminating with release of this magnum opus. Last year’s Avengers: Infinity War told the first half of this epic story. Super-villain Thanos collected a group of “Infinity Stones” which gave him absolute power over time and space. His goal was to use the stones to eliminate half of all life in the universe, thereby assuring the remaining beings would have unlimited resources and enough space in which to live. Despite the opposition of our heroes, Thanos succeeds, and wipes out millions of beings with the snap of a finger.
|Robert Downey, Jr. and Chris Evans|
Endgame is a worthy follow-up to Avengers: Infinity War. We get to see the effect Thanos’ actions have on the world. Half of the population has disappeared, including some of the Avengers and their allies. The emotional toll suffered by everyone remaining on Earth has not left our heroes untouched. Some have stepped up to help people in the wake of the catastrophe, while others have retreated from the world, or descended into anger or depression. Then, someone who was missing in action during the events of the previous film brings a ray of hope to the team. This hero may just have a way to save the universe, but undoing the damage done by Thanos won’t come without a cost.
The movie has action, humor, and real emotional depth. Directors Joe and Anthony Russo (who also helmed Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War) manage to provide fans with some powerful moments during the three-hour running time. Endgame is a visually rich and stunning film. This is an epic tale with a sweeping scope, writ upon a large canvas. There are scenes throughout the movie that will make you smile, laugh, and cry; and during an epic battle towards the end of the film, you might just want to stand up and cheer. But the true heart and soul of these stories are the characters. Robert Downey, Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America and Chris Hemsworth as Thor all have emotional and compelling scenes, and they’re just part of this excellent group of actors. At this point in the series, everyone knows their characters intimately. They're able to provide well-rounded, fully fleshed-out performances, even with a less screen time among such a large ensemble.
Avengers: Endgame brings this cycle of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to an end, but there are more movies to come, including a new Spider Man adventure, Far From Home, that's being released in July. Endgame is a true valentine to Marvel Comics (and film) fans everywhere. If you’re a long-time Marvel devotee who’s been watching these movies since the beginning, you’ll be delighted to catch a host of cameos and Easter eggs throughout the movie. Avengers: Endgame really is a must see for fans. I will admit to feeling that the hype machine went into overdrive on this one, but that's a consequence of the modern entertainment world we live in. The movie is a fantastic superhero adventure with a heart and a soul. Finally, a note on spoilers: the film has been out for a few weeks now, but I chose to stay largely spoiler free in this review for those who still haven't seen the movie. Here’s a link to the trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcMBFSGVi1c.