Avengers: Infinity War Review – 10 Years In The Making, Worth Every Penny

By Mike Reyes

This is the bat crack that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been building up to since The Avengers first teased Thanos back in 2012, with Avengers: Infinity War sends the ball sailing out of the park and into the record books. 

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has grown into not only the gold standard for superhero movies, but also the wet dream for any studio looking to make long term investments with recursively incredible yields. It wasn’t overnight though, as ten years and 18 films helped shape that model that the world and fate of Marvel Studios’ current fortunes would depend on. So the fact that Avengers: Infinity War serves as a fantastical payoff to that stretch of road isn’t a surprise. Rather, the shock comes from how in a world of would-be cinematic franchises being killed almost as quickly as they’re created, the original player in the game can still make us all believe.

With The Avengers scattered to the winds after the events of Captain America: Civil War, the great evil known as Thanos (Josh Brolin) finally comes to Earth’s doorstep. In his quest to bring balance to the universe, our mightiest heroes will team up to stop him from achieving his endgame. But the clash between those we trust to protect us, and the Mad Titan himself, will come at a great and terrible cost.

It’s hard to talk about Avengers: Infinity War without spoiling it, but I’m going to avoid such spoilers in my rundown of the film. Suffice it to say, Joe and Anthony Russo’s directing chops, combined yet again with Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely’s writing acumen, turns in one hell of a first half to a two part epic. While this film is not without its own closed ecosystem of setup and payoff, it’s crucial to remember that it is the first part of a grander exercise that will fully close out with next year’s Avengers 4. Even in that respect, all involved have delivered a stunning blow to the box office that will surprise and shock audiences with every frame of action.

Performance wise, it’s beautiful to see how at home everyone is in Avengers: Infinity War. The mixture of seasoned veterans like Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, and Scarlett Johansson, as well as newcomers such as Chadwick Boseman and Tom Holland, is one that works in the best way possible. Those that have been in the universe for a long time get to spread out into new and uncharted territory, while those who are more recent additions further cement themselves as equals with those who came before them. In particular, special MVP treatment needs to be awarded to Chris Hemsworth, who is the most improved in Avengers: Infinity War. In this film, the Marvel franchise has finally given Thor some meaty material to work with, and you can see it in Hemsworth’s Odinson, who has adopted a tone and mannerism similar to his father, played by Anthony Hopkins.

Most impressively, Avengers: Infinity War introduces its most formidable, and most complex, villains in Josh Brolin’s Thanos, and his equally insidious zealots known as the Black Order. While the latter work as devoted believers that serve at the whim of their purple overlord, Thanos himself is quite the charismatic leader to follow. When the film does lay bare his motivations, and how they were inspired, it makes his character the perfect example of a villain that sees themselves as the hero. If the action set-pieces and crossovers of Avengers: Infinity War are the ice cream to this sundae of a film, Thanos and his backstory are the whipped cream and cherry you need to complete the package.

Avengers: Infinity War is the beginning of the end for an era in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and it is both appetizer and entrée to a hungry audience heading to the multiplex to see it. The stakes are high, and the third act has a set of Infinity Stones on it to execute what it does, but the even more exciting part is how the hell it will be fulfilled, particularly with Ant-Man and The Wasp and Captain Marvel both dropping in the interim. Though, as Marvel Studios has proven time and time again, their methods are precise, their aim clear, and their universe mapped to lead the audience to where they need to be.

This is what happens when you craft a universe over time, with patience and true conviction in what you’re doing. This is what happens when you build your universe on the foundation of fans who understand the material their working with. And, most of all, this is the bat crack that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been building up to since The Avengers first teased Thanos back in 2012, with Avengers: Infinity War sends the ball sailing out of the park and into the record books. If you can’t trust Marvel by now, you haven’t been paying enough attention; and if Avengers: Infinity War doesn’t excite you, then maybe you need to start from scratch and remind yourself what the true context of this film is.

My Rating: 4.5 / 5