Finally, the culmination of 11 years, 21 films and over 80 characters, the Endgame is here, but can Marvel do the unthinkable and actually pull it off?
Avengers: Endgame is the sequel to 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War and follows the surviving heroes attempting to come to terms with everything they have lost and experienced as well as their plans to avenge the fallen.
The film begins with a very sombre and mature outlook on our heroes. They are in mourning. They are tired. They are scared, with some having been pushed to their darkest places, all as a method to cope with the incomprehensible loss of 50% of all sentient life. This all gives the first act a “slow” pace. Slow in the fact that with the majority of superhero films, the opening act is exciting and action-packed, whereas with Endgame it is not. However, that’s for the best as in place of action are true character moments for all involved, especially that of Robert Downey Jr’s Tony Stark and Chris Evan’s Steve Rogers, who are, arguably the main characters in this ensemble film.
However, after the first act concludes, the fun begins. The plot traverses a route that is on the one hand expected and seen in many other films, but then on the other hand, perfect in the film’s purpose of celebrating the last 11 years. This provides us with laughs and aids in building our heroes back up for the final act. And what a final act. Now, when people say that some movies need to be seen in cinemas, thoughts harken back to films such as Interstellar, Avatar and Titanic. The final act of Avengers: Endgame needs to be in that list. It is a sight to behold. The cinematography masterfully sets the scale of events, whilst the action flows between each major character giving them time in the spotlight, allowing us to keep track of others’ movements and enjoy the ride.
Despite the praise I am giving this film, there are areas I disagree with. The direction a particular character goes in is a questionable one for me and is predominantly played for laughs even though if with a slightly more serious tone, it would have been impactful. However, that is one character in about 20, meaning despite any flaws I have with the film, they are small in relation to the achievement of managing to successfully conclude a 22-film arc without it being a convoluted mess. This is due to the Russo Brothers taking a page from Guy Ritchie and balance all plot points over a set time and then let them collide at precisely the right moments. As such, what forms is a beautiful swansong for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that, not only respects its characters, but also respects its audience.
In an ideal world, Avengers: Endgame would be the last MCU film. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Which ultimately is a shame as what we have is the finale of a TV show that has captured the hearts of millions upon millions of people and will continue to do so for generations to come. However, the series will go on, whether that is for better or worse is yet to be determined, although I would not be surprised if Avengers: Endgame marks the beginning of the end for the MCU.