Cast - 93%
Story - 90%
Music Score - 86%
Effects/Quality - 88%
Originality - 90%
It’s finally here!! Ever since the initial release of Marvel Studios ‘Iron Man’, the goal was to build up through multiple characters and films toward “Marvel’s The Avengers” which at the time took the long running tried and true concept of the comic team-up and proved that such an idea could work on film and be successful. From moment of the mid-credit scene providing our first very brief glimpse of Thanos on screen, the goal has been to build up further all the way until Marvel Stud10s “Avengers: Infinity War”, which from conception to release has been close to a decade in the making. If “The Avengers” was a team-up, “Avengers: Infinity War” is the equivalent of an epic crossover event, and proving in broad strokes that this too can not only work on film, but succeed. So much so that it makes the two previous Avengers films look small by comparison; which says a lot and it once again challenges audience expectations of the genre.
The sheer scale and ambition of “Avengers: Infinity War” is unprecedented in cinema to this point and many would have previous thought impossible. The level of secrecy on this movie alone has been unlike many others, all in an effort to provide the movie going audience with something truly special …until the next one. While these sorts of events and casts of hundreds are nothing new for comic readers or fans of the different animated series and adaptations, this is breaking new ground in terms of big-budget live action blockbusters. This movie takes the concept of the shared cinematic universe to the next level, with nearly all the relevant major and supporting characters from across the entire Marvel Studio’s slate from “Iron Man” in 2008 until “Black Panther” earlier this year in 2018, creating an ensemble cast of dozens of familiar characters across this 149 minute epic. The benefit of this of course is that the plot isn’t bogged down by having to introduce every character and explain who they are; the filmmakers assume you know all these characters already or at least have a passing familiarity with them from their previous appearances and individual film adventures. The downside is if somebody goes into this movie having not seen most of the previous associated films, one could very easily get lost quickly and have to play a mental game of catch-up with the plot, but luckily there is enough given that even new viewers should be able to get up to speed and reward long standing viewers at the same time. With all this heavy lifting out of the way, the movie is free to jump right into the action which starts almost immediately and barely lets up throughout the duration.
The synopsis is very simple. “Avengers: Infinity War” brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time as The Avengers and their Super Hero allies must be willing to sacrifice all in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin on his quest for the Infinity Stones (previously seen throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU)) puts an end to the universe.
Despite the longer than average runtime, you’ll barely notice as this movie will fly by and hold your attention throughout even in the quieter character moments and introspective dialogue as the plot advances. This is due to our familiarity and attachment to the characters throughout the saga of the MCU who are almost all endearing and given a lot of heart throughout. While this is one of, if not the most intense and serious films in the saga to date; don’t think that means any less humour compared to most MCU films. The Marvel Studios trademark humour is still very present throughout and helps undercut some of the angst and tension as the plot ramps up, quite possibly being one of the more genuinely funny MCU films yet without being a complete comedy. The action in “Avengers: Infinity War” is on another level and the intricacy and staging of several of the big action set pieces throughout the film is something to behold. With so many characters, all with their own unique abilities and fighting styles involved in these battles with the Children of Thanos, it leads to a lot of incredibly looking and quit cutting sequences that in the hands of lesser directors might be difficult to follow, but luckily the Russo Brothers have proven to be more than up to the task and make the heavy action as well the entire film very easy to follow despite the massive cast and enormity of the plot. No matter how skillfully and effortless they make this seem, there’s no getting around the fact that this is dense event film and as such there is A LOT going on…sometimes maybe too much going on. It will be a challenge for anyone to remember every single moment and detail of this movie when leaving the cinema the first time as there are just so many.
I have mentioned the size of the cast numerous times throughout this review, but it can’t be stated enough just how big this movie is. While many of these characters are the main focus of their own movies or past team-ups, here the focus has to bounce from and shift between so many, often times short changing certain fan favorites characters in favour of others who are given more focus in this story. While that may be disappointing to some, it is just the nature of a film of this scale. However, even with so many characters to juggle between, the filmmakers very wisely never forget to give each hero and most of the supporting cast a moment; regardless if it is a major moment, small moment, a clever line, an action sequence or anything else, fans of these characters will definitely leave with the sense that each character had a moment to shine in this movie.
A lot of credit has to be given to Joe and Anthony Russo for directing easily the biggest film of the year, if not the decade….if not ever. It’s debatable if this movie would succeed as much as does without them at the helm. With every major character and actor from the MCU converging in this movie, it’s impossible to single out anybody over anyone else, as they have all proven themselves in their own movies and bring the same level of quality to this one as well. You don’t get the sense that anybody is phoning it in and everyone brings their A-Game. A special mention has to go to Josh Brolin returning as Thanos in what is essentially his first true performance of the character where he is able to stretch his legs and show us why we have been supposed to fear him after all this time. Thanos is as much the protagonist of this story as he is the antagonist and his actions drive much of the plot around him while the heroes desperately scramble to stop his plans from coming to fruition. This CG in bringing Thanos to life looks great, capturing every last minor facial movement and detail, as does the CG throughout the film. After the events of this movie, Thanos might go down as one of the top movie villains of all time but only time will tell. As mentioned though, everybody involved deserves praise for this one from the directors, produces, cast, crew, effects teams, composer and so on.
Alan Silvestri returns to compose his first MCU film since “Marvel’s The Avengers” and crafts a beautiful score that captures of all the dread, scale and adventure of a movie like this. He cleverly hearkens back to cues from his scores from the first Avengers and Captain America films as well as incorporating musical cues from “Spider-Man: Homecoming”, “Guardians of the Galaxy”, “Black Panther” and many more to provide audio continuity with the rest of the MCU saga, particularly when each character makes their presence felt on screen. This one might be worth going out of your way to find on CD or in the iTunes/Spotify stores for fans of film music.
This film that has been years in the making is well worth the wait. You’ll get all the thrills and laughs of past MCU movies, as well a whole range of emotions as the movie unfolds. I have never heard an audience laugh as much as they did in this movie (that isn’t designed to be a comedy) in very many years and I also never heard an audience completely left speechless as they were in this movie. This movie will play with your emotions in so many ways and never quite go the way you think it will, while also giving you a complete movie going experience and still leaving you longing for more. Luckily there is only a year to go until the as-yet untitled Avengers 4 and only a couple of months until “Ant-Man and the Wasp” to tide us over until 2019. Though it might not be hard especially after a story like this, be sure to stay for the post credit scene at the end of the credits for even more. Enjoy South Africa as the big one is here.
Reviewed on: Cinema 2D
Available on: Cinema 2D, Cinema 3D, 4DX, IMAX 3D, 3D Prestige, D Box 3D
Genre: Superhero, Action, Adventure, Scf-Fi
Age Rating: 10-12 PG V
Estimated RRP: R50 – R175
Release Date: 27 April 2018
- Too much going on at times
- Some characters relegated to the background and don’t get much to do