Avengers: Infinity War is the end of an era. What was started with Roberty Downey Jr.’s first outing in the metal suit has reached the end of the line. Well, if not the end of the line, more a definitive halt in normal proceedings.
The events of Captain America: Civil War have left the Avenger split across the world – Team Cap are on the run (for all intents and purposes), Iron Man is back doing his thing with Pepper and poor Rhodes is having to deal with men in suits trying to tell him what to do. Things all change however when Bruce Banner/The Hulk returns to warn them all of the coming peril: Thanos is on his way.
What follows is several interconnecting plot lines that see various superheros teaming up with people they’ve never met and learning to work together very quickly – Star Lord’s competitiveness with Thor, Dr Strange and Iron Man eyeing each other up and firing back snarky comments whenever the opportunity arises and Captain America working alongside Black Panther and the Dora Miljae. Sometimes these work, something the scene and pace changes between these narrative strands can feel a little stilted, more like a series of vignettes than a single fim, but in fairness to the film, this only jars a few times and after ten years and eighteen films there are a lot of narrative ends to tie up.
It’s also brilliantly witty, as Marvel films have always embraced and with more than a few big and consistant laughs in between the action makes it an easy and entertaining watch. And what a thing it is to watch as well. It’s film that deserves to be seen on the biggest screen possible – the visual spectacles of alien worlds, of colours that pop and dominate the entire screen, the care and effort that has gone into the creation of these scenes by hundreds of people is breathtaking.
The cast are all on fine form – there’s too many to mention here – but the chemistry between the original Avengers is contrasted with an injection of new blood into proceedings, all comfortable and sure of themselves in these characters that they have been playing for several years. And Thanos is also a well drawn character – worth the fear and trepidation that has been around him for all these years, but also providing an unexpectedly emotional journey and some really spectacular scenes with Zoe Saldana.
My only criticism would be with the first scene in the film, above Asgard’s emergency ship – the film leaps into action without too much time for the audience to realise what point we are in within the story – bearing in mind that Thor: Ragnarok, of which this scene directly follows on from, came out almost eight months ago. While I’m not suggesting a recap of any kind, it could have had a more impactful start.
And the ending. I’m not going to spoil it, but believe me when I say that the MCU has been changed forever. I’m excited and worried about what is to come. But if it’s anything like the Russo Brothers’ latest, bring it on.