Ten Years In The Making: A Review of ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

By The Collectress

I have done my best to make this a spoiler-free review, and any potential spoilers will be tagged with **. Ye be warned. 

Well, I saw the thing.

The thing, if you’re wondering, is a ten-foot-tall mad Titan with a thirst for omnipotence and a taste for genocide.

Avengers: Infinity War was a wild ride from start to finish, and to be honest, I haven’t entirely sorted my feelings about it, so this review may also take you on a journey with me. It’s a journey that’s been ten years in the making, according to Marvel Studios. But is the result worth the wait?

Maybe. Maybe not. 

This is a difficult film to summarize without revealing crucial plot points, so here’s the best I can give you:** over the past few years, we’ve seen a few things called Infinity Stones (The Tesseract, for example) and we didn’t really know anything about them except that they were extremely powerful. Well, this big wrinkled purple Smurf (Josh Brolin) gets a golden glove (probably from that one Lannister heheh) and decides that hey, the most powerful costume jewelry in the universe is going to look good on it, especially since said jewelry will help him commit mass genocide.

Enter our heroes…all of them. While they scramble to create a plan to defeat Angry Purple Smurf and protect the known Infinity Stones, it becomes apparent that they are outnumbered, outpowered, and out of luck.

Remember that “oh shit” moment the Avengers had way back in 2012 at the beginning of the Chitauri invasion of New York?

That moment is the entirety of Avengers: Infinity War. 

With dozens of MCU characters appearing in this film, this is the most ambitious superhero film ever made. The Russo brothers promised something that had never been seen before, and it’s true. The scope and complexity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as it finally unites in the face of one enemy is impressive. There’s a moment, when Tony Stark puts on the latest Ironman suit, that beautifully reminisces the first time we saw him wear it back in 2008, and you have to wonder: did anyone expect that film to transform the occasional superhero action flick into the entertainment juggernaut franchise that it is now?

Probably not.

The magnitude of this film aside, it delivers on several levels. The makeup and costuming are immaculate, the cinematography cohesive, and the CGI has all the comic-ish homages that we’ve come to expect. The film truly is stunning to behold, and I almost want to watch it in slow motion to really appreciate the technical aspects of the film.

That said, and this is probably an unpopular opinion, I also found the script to be lacking in the way it depicted characters consistently, and in the development of newer characters to the MCU canon. While I know it’s nearly impossible to consistently develop dozens of characters in a 2.5 hour film, I did rather expect more from these directors, who have been involved with the MCU since 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Several of the founding Avengers seem stagnant in this film, and one very nearly seems to go backward in character development, leaving a very disjointed result. It’s almost painfully obvious which characters the Russo’s were excited about writing, and to which ones they gave the obligatory six minutes of screen time (no matter how prominent or important they were in past MCU films). The Russo brothers are perhaps the equivalent of a young child at Christmas time, excited for new toys and allowing old ones to sit forgotten in one spot until they’re accidentally tripped over.

The first Avengers film was a story about teamwork. The team only saved the Earth because they learned to work together. The second Avengers film focused on the idea that even heroes can make mistakes and need to atone for them. The third Avengers film? Well, so far it seems to be about an angry purple smurf, and I think that is what sets this film apart from its predecessors, for good or bad. There is no theme, no cohesion to unify it–just a lot of set up to whatever comes next.

But perhaps that is the point.

Or perhaps it isn’t.

I guess we’ll find out in 2019.

Avengers: Infinity War is now playing in U.S. cinemas.