- Andrew Lynch
AVENGERS: ENDGAME Review
11 years. 21 films. 15 directors. 6 stones. 6 Avengers. 1 Vision (literally and figuratively). This is, as people call it, the end. It’s Avengers: Endgame, what else did you expect? Okay let’s not bore you with the details. Half the universe has been wiped from existence, and the Avengers and some friends decide to, well, avenge them.
Endgame is nothing short of a miracle. If you thought Infinity War was an ambitious crossover, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Is Endgame perfect and the best superhero film of all time? No, not by a long shot, but it is one of the most bombastic, satisfying, emotionally gripping and surprising superhero films of all time.
The Russo brothers and writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely manage to balance countless story threads and references to a thoughtful and measured conclusion that is a fitting send off for the 6 founding Avengers. We see the Avengers pull themselves up from the lowest they’ve ever been, to their most triumphant act of defiance in the face of what feel like impossible odds. Something most superhero films never capture is a sense of menace elicited from the villain. By fleshing out Thanos in Infinity War, the Russo have established him as a threat that feels threatening and not just because he wields the most powerful object in the universe, but because we’ve seen the heroes fail tremendously to him before. What’s stopping them from doing it again? Cause this time, they’ll lose together.
The 6 Avengers all have their moment to shine; action wise and emotionally. They all suffer and grieve in their own ways; Cap organises therapy sessions; Hulk buried himself in his work; Black Widow stuck with the life she knew; Hawkeye went on the warpath to avenge those he deems were unfairly taken; Thor got fat and Iron Man walked away from it all. It makes their unification and their journey all the more bitter sweet because nothing lasts forever. The standouts have to be Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans, the corner stones of the MCU that deliver rich final performances for these characters.
Anyone worried that newer characters might overpower the narrative, have nothing to fear (except their own ego and belief of entitlement). In fact, some of these characters aren’t utilised enough with less time given for them to shine. While this is the send-off for the founders, nothing was stopping the film from giving them their own moment to shine. It’s not like they were short on time or anything. For a whopping 3 hour run time, the film never drags as the heroes travel down memory lane, (literally), in an incredibly convoluted fashion. The film acknowledges the rules of a time travel film and spits in their face and presents its own version that, while grounded in more modern theories, is never clearly defined. Also, the film has a tough job of balancing one of the more emotionally heavy MCU films, with the comedic elements present in all MCU films. It sometimes comes across as jarring with a particular scene in which two characters basically perform slapstick in an attempt to kill themselves.
That is all forgotten when the finale begins. Epic doesn’t begin to describe the scale and emotion as the Avengers make their final stand. The action is tightly choreographed that characters are never lost amongst the carnage, and fan service moments are never pandering but fist-pumping moments that will having you cheering till your voice is shot. Your mouth will hang open, continually awed; not just at the gorgeous cinematography, or the escalation of awesomeness; but at the realization of one man’s vision. Baseball caps off to Kevin Fiege who spearheaded this universe to this point.
Avengers: Endgame is one of the most insane, satisfying, risky and mind-blowing superhero film you were told to believe a man could fly. It is an event comic book brought to life that brings the ridiculousness of comics to life with care and sincerity. It that honours the past and the audience of not just the MCU but Marvel comics as well. You’ll never cheer, or laugh or cry as hard at any film event this year. Nuff said.