An unprecedented cinematic journey ten years in the making and spanning the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time. The Avengers and their super hero allies must willing to sacrifice it all in an attempt to defeat the power of Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.
Before you continue reading, this review will be as SPOILER-FREE as possible. So if you still haven’t seen the movie and unsure whether to read this review, you’re safe.
There’s no doubt that Infinity War is the most epic comic book movie ever – maybe the most epic movie of any genre. The grand scope, the level of ambition, and the overall vision are just staggering. The fight scenes are massive, the ensemble cast is huge, and Thanos poses a threat to the entire universe. The Russo brothers did an incredible job executing this. It could have easily been messy or overstuffed, but somehow, they made it work.
The biggest part of this is the cast. Every actor continues to be great in their respective roles, from Robert Downey Jr. to Chris Pratt to Chadwick Boseman. Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange gets a lot to do, while the Guardians of the Galaxy have hilarious interactions with the Avengers. Really, seeing all of these heroes interact is a pure joy. But the true MVP of our heroes turns out to be Chris Hemsworth’s Thor. Ever since Ragnarok, Thor has been on a roll. But in this movie, he has a truly compelling character arc, and he is at the heart of the conflict with Thanos. One scene in particular drew big reactions from the audience at my screening.
However, the movie really belongs to the main villain – Thanos. Josh Brolin is truly amazing as the Mad Titan. It would’ve been so easy to depict a big purple villain as corny or silly or whatever. But here, Thanos is a multi-layered, sympathetic antagonist. His motivation is very interesting, and his actions actually make sense. Or, about as much sense as mass genocide could make. An argument could be made for Thanos being the best MCU villain yet, and with the studio nailing other recent villains (like Hela and Killmonger), it looks like the trend of underwhelming villains is a thing of the past.
As for the story… man. Again, I’m not going into spoilers, so I won’t discuss any major scenes in detail. But in general, this is probably the darkest MCU movie yet. Don’t get me wrong, there’s plenty of humor throughout. But when it gets dark, the Russos do not play around. The stakes are real, the threat is imminent, and you will be at the edge of your seat for the whole 2 hours and 30 minutes. The film also does a great job with bouncing between characters. Each set of characters have their own tone – the Guardians, the Avengers, Black Panther, and so on – that were established in their prior movies. Infinity War does a fantastic job continuing that. Again, it’s amazing how well they made it work when it could have so easily been a trainwreck.
And really, I didn’t have any major issues with Infinity War. It does what it sets out to do, and it goes above and beyond in just about every category. The cast is perfect, the story is thrilling, and the visuals are out of this world…often literally. This is the type of movie that will leave you thinking for a long time. In fact, as I write this, I’m still trying to wrap my mind around everything.
In summary, Avengers: Infinity War is a masterful culmination of 10 years’ worth of storytelling. Sure, it’s still the first part of a two-movie story, but it is a really great first part. It’s a risky, fun, and all-around epic installment of the saga. Simply put, the MCU will never be the same after this. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, leave the Internet, avoid spoilers, and go see it. The less you know about this movie, the better.
And now, the wait for Avengers 4 begins…