It’s been 18 movies and 10 years and Avengers: Infinity War felt like it. The support in the theatre and the atmosphere in the halls in congruence with the Russo brothers’ third movie for the Marvel Cinematic Universe made the night feel like a comic event come to life. From the moment it started there was intensity, action, and emotion. I wanted to write a spoiler review, but I’m going to save that for our podcast review episode. In that, I’ll have unlimited time to unpack the variety of feelings and comic book nuances that are circling in my head, three days after my first viewing. Just to put it out there, I’m reviewing this through a lens of someone who has had held this franchise close to their heart since the beginning in 2008. Without spoilers, I can tell you this:
Josh Brolin brought the Mad Titan to life 6 years after we saw him teased in Marvel’s Avengers. There is some truth to the CGI villains don’t work, when you look back on past CGI big bads, from overuse of green screen and little to no dialogue, I was scared Thanos would be Steppenwolf. However, in Infinity War they approach Thanos like they do any other character: with depth and emotion. His stature as a cosmic god didn’t turn him into a mindless giant and instead we saw a villain on par with Killmonger, Vulture, and Hela. The actor made you feel their motives and his presence on screen was powerful and show-stealing, only Brolin did this through layers of CGI. Thanos is a character in the MCU that I think beats the comic counterpart and quickly becomes the best comic book villain brought to life on screen.
When the team posters and trailers were released I was skeptical of some of the pairings. Would Thor and the Guardians be too much joking? And most importantly, how much ego can fit in one scene — could Tony Stark and Doctor Strange work? It all did. Every character interaction on screen had depth, impact, and wasn’t forced. There were moments of Reunion, first meetings, and even silent but impactful teamwork, which worked to make the MCU feel whole, and not just for one movie. Each character and relationship that is focused on has meaning to the movie and to each other.
Infinity War wins because it doesn’t kill the audience with exposition. The Russo brothers made a movie that expects the audience to have seen the movies that came before and that’s a good thing. They took the lives that each director/writer made for the characters before Infinity War, their personality traits, their relationships, and then they built on it instead of reiterating the work already done. From pulling in the same scores from their solo films and bringing back Alan Silvestri – the mind behind the iconic Avenger’s theme – to letting the characters develop beyond common tropes, Infinity War is truly a culmination of 18 films. There is no unnecessary exposition which allows the movie to throw punch after punch from the first minute to the last without getting bogged down in unnecessary subplot.
Reviewing this movie without spoilers is difficult. There are so many layers to peel back, so many characters who finally got the depth and importance they were missing. Ultimately, all I can offer is this: watch the movie. If you’re a MCU fan, watch it. If you’re a comics fan, watch it. If you love action, watch it. With a record breaking $250 million opening weekend (unseating Star Wars), I bet you already have but just in case you haven’t, Thanos demands my silence.
Rating: 6/6 Infinity Stones
Pros: The fight sequences, the character development, the chemistry between the cast members that had never worked together, the continuity within the larger franchise, Bearded Cap.
Cons: Not many, the movie is truly a part 1. I guess if you didn’t want to watch any of the movies the MCU has put out for the last 10 years, this isn’t going to spoon feed you what you missed. But if that’s the case I don’t think you’ll watch it to begin with.