Avengers: Infinity War – Movie Review (NO SPOILERS) – An astoundingly ambitious culmination of the MCU.

Avengers: Infinity War follows the heroes as they must sacrifice everything in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos, before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.

This is a very ambitious and bold film. Without a doubt Marvel’s most ambitious film to date. It’s not without some flaws which I’ll get onto in a moment, but my god does this film feel like a grand comic book event. You know when you’ve been reading a series of comics for a while, and there’s the final issue that is this epic story featuring dozens of characters, that’s exactly what this film felt like for the MCU. Right from the opening the film grasps your attention and never ceases to let go until the very end. It’s quite remarkable. The script does a fine job of creating some very enjoyable and often hilarious dialogue exchanges between the characters. The dynamics between most of the characters who share scenes together, amplify the fun factor of this film beyond one hundred. Now I do think the narrative has balance and structural issues. These issues were present on a number of occasions through out the run time. Some scenes go on for too long, which means we end up spending a little too much time with a specific set of characters during certain portions of the film. At other times it’s the complete opposite, as the film would sometimes switch to other characters too soon, and right when the prior scene was just reaching the peak of being deeply engaging. I think the script and the editing is mainly to blame for this. The tone on the other hand worked really well. The film knew when to prioritise the drama over laughs, but don’t get me wrong the film is much funnier than I expected, but the humour never detracts from the stakes whatsoever.

I would be here forever if I attempted to address each cast member individually, but what you essentially ought to know is the entire ensemble is terrific and there isn’t a single weak link among them. Many of the characters have their own standout moments, but performance wise Josh Brolin, Robert Downey Jr., Zoe Saldana and Chris Hemsworth really stood out in terms of the drama. Thanos is brought to life with incredible motion capture visual effects, which allow Brolin’s stellar performance as The Mad Titian to really be visible underneath all of the visual effects. I was surprised, but massively pleased with how they explored the emotional side to the character. It helped make him far more than the physically imposing villain. I think elements of his motivations could’ve done with a little more clarity and I do believe we could’ve explored him even further. That being said, what we were given is still impressive. As the daughter of Thanos, Gamora is at the forefront of this story and Zoe Saldana is given the platform to showcase her range, and she does so to an impressive extent. The same can be said for Chris Hemsworth, because Thor has one of the more satisfying character arc’s in the film. If I briefly go back to what I said about the film having issues with balance, there’s a couple key characters that I expected to receive more screen time but they didn’t. The main person I’m referring to is Chris Evans. Steve Rogers didn’t feel as significant to this story as I had expected, whereas Robert Downey Jr. certainly did.

An element of the film I was really looking forward to was Thanos’ Black Order. Ebony Maw was the one I was looking forward to seeing the most and he ended up being the most interesting member. He is essentially a cultist who attempts to recruit the survivors left in the wake of Thanos’ destruction, to join him as a child of Thanos. I really liked Tom Vaughan-Lawlor’s mo cap performance and voice work for Ebony Maw. Unfortunately the rest of the Black Order were quite underwhelming. They failed to feel threatening and we didn’t find out a whole lot about them or why they chose to serve Thanos.

The visual effects were mostly impressive, especially when Thanos is using some of the infinity stones to his advantage. The visuals used to showcase the gauntlet wrecking havoc were excellent. At times the green screen backgrounds were particularly noticeable, but it didn’t really take me out of the film. The action set pieces were well constructed and feature a handful of crowd pleasing moments, where we get to see multiple heroes team up in battle.

Many people will discuss the films climax once they see the film. I found it to be a little predicable and a little underwhelming for reasons I cannot explain in this spoiler free review. Despite this it will still most likely leave you in shock. I was speechless for about fifteen minutes after the film had ended.

Overall Avengers: Infinity War is far more ambitious than I even expected it to be. It misses the mark when it comes to balancing out the structure of the narrative, but almost every other aspect of the film works exceptionally well. After six years of patiently waiting Thanos is here and he doesn’t disappoint, nor does the wide array of characters and cast members who make up the great ensemble.

★★★★

(4 Stars out of 5)

T.Graham.

Avengers: Infinity War – Starring Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Chadwick Boseman, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Tom Holland and Josh Brolin.

Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo.

Now showing in cinemas.

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