Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
The Avengers and their allies must be willing to sacrifice all in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.
Where: Odeon Brighton
When: Saturday 28th April
Snacks: Popcorn and drink combo
Well this one is going to be a doozy to recap but I’ll do my best. Not all heroes wear spandex and hang out with Thor, you know?
In two words I think I could sum up Infinity War – “My heart” – but since this is a supposed film blog, more words are required. Here goes…
This film blew my tiny mind, made me feel excited once more to be immersed in the MCU (though to be fair this had already started with the first Guardians movies and from Homecoming to Black Panther) – something I never saw coming. Marvel Fatigue is an actual thing, a new sickness sweeping the nation but the fever’s broken and all is well again – that’s how I see it.
I want to be part of the action again and have strong feelings for so many of our protagonists – so you can imagine that this was a hard one to stomach given the way it leaves things.
Yes, yes – so many theories about the future of our favourites, I know but let’s just grieve for a little while.
Infinity War has so much going on that I won’t got through the plot bit by bit as I might normally, instead I think I’ll pick out the bits I super loved and scratch away at the tiny bits that didn’t work for me (there’s not much).
- Literally everything and everyone in Wakanda, obvs. From Okoye (Danai Gurira) to BP himself (Chadwick Boseman) by way of Shuri (Letitia Wright) and M’Baku (Winston Duke) and his crew – it’s spot on. Wakanda forever indeed!
- All the Guardians (not you Quill, see below) – particularly Drax (Dave Bautista) and Rocket (Bradley Cooper).
- Special shout out to teen Groot (Vin Diesel) who dominated his scenes in the most subtle way – and the teenager stereotype wasn’t overdone here, even though it is so accurate (step mum of a 13-year-old, yo).
- Thanos (Josh Brolin) the super villain with an actual heart and an almost understandable agenda, even though it’s evil and obviously hugely misguided. As with Killmonger’s raison d’être in Black Panther, there’s a social commentary being made and it’s refreshing that these motivations are a grey area. It also allows us to feel something for our antagonists, if not total understanding – and I like that feeling, frankly.
- Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), surprisingly. He featured way more than I expected and I like him, I really like him.
- Spiderman’s (Tom Holland) scenes were all top-notch but I really enjoyed his film references and particularly replicating a scene from Aliens to save the day (temporarily). It would also be remiss to not mention his final scene which broke my heart cleanly in two.
- Rocket and Groot teaming up with Thor (Hemsworth), the “Pirate Angel” – this new dynamic kept things fresh and really showcased Rocket’s comic timing. See also Rocket on the battle field with Bucky (Sebastian Stan) and Groot’s initial meeting with Cap (Chris Evans): “I am Steve Rogers”. PERFECTION.
- Cap’s beard – also perfection.
- Peter Dinklage as Eitri. I loved the whole forging of the axe segment on Nidavellir. Glorious and funny as Hell.
- Girl power on the front line – when Okoye and Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) rock up to fight alongside Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), I cheered and then got a lump in my throat. Female unity hasn’t exactly been a thing like this before (or before BP, that is) and I’m here for all of it – more please Marvel. Also, the line: “She’s not alone”, pass the fucking tissues.
- Hulk in hiding is a new exploration of PTSD and I liked this too – plus we get more Ruffalo screen time and the contrast between Bruce Banner and Hulk is really interesting – I look forward to seeing the jolly green giant again but for now: oh hai, Mark!
- Also the awkward reunion of Romanoff and Bruce – so many emotions in one simple, brief exchange.
- We got more from Scarlet Witch and her skills which I’m here for, as well as more Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and Nebula (Karen Gillan) – although I don’t think Gamora can come back, I’m hopeful they’ll find a groove for Nebula somewhere and evolve her character more.
- Dat post-credit scene, man. “Motherfu…”
- And so many other scenes and little details that I’ve probably forgotten to mention.
The Not So Best Bits
- Could take or leave the Scarlet Witch/Vision (Paul Bettany) love-in. Wishy-washy as fuck. Also, how does he get into human form, is this a thing now?
- Peter Quill/Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) at the best of times but in this his petulance really came through and irritated me, not least because he fucks things up for the others. I get he’s got some grieving to do but look at the bigger picture, dude.
- Not enough Wong (Benedict Wong) – where did he go, off to make a cuppa while the universe imploded? (Actually, fair play, that’s where I’d be).
- It did seem just a teeny bit easy for Thanos to get all those Infinity Stones one by one (sacrificing his daughter aside).
- No Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) or Korg (Taika Waititi)? Criminal!
So all in all, I am one happy fan-bunny (and I’m seeing it again tomorrow). While I had initial reservations about keeping up with so much, I think it was handled perfectly with little splinter groups mixing things up. Introducing new dynamics and building new relationships was a stroke of inspiration and one of my favourite elements. I can’t wait for Avengers 4 now.
All that build up over a decade and we get this: if not a masterpiece, then pretty blimmin’ close.