Avengers: Endgame. Probably the most anticipation I've ever felt for a movie. If you've seen my first thoughts video (here), you know I not only was pretty excited leaving this film, I highly enjoyed it as well. In fact, I didn't think they could top Infinity War, but this one does 10 fold. If you've been keeping up I like to let these set in a little before coming here & writing out a more full, still spoiler free, review. Spoiler free is going to be hard with this one as every scene could potentially be a spoiler. The Russo brothers were not lying when they said the trailers were pretty much in the first 30 minutes, if real footage at all. I'm gonna handle this one a little different than usual & talk about my only negative first.Read More
So, as usual after my first thoughts video, I like to take a little time & let everything set in before I write a more full review. If you haven't seen that video you can check it out here. I feel like Captain Marvel is fighting an uphill battle, even with people I personally know, before they even see it. For some it's the press it's getting, for others it's unfortunately the fact that it's a girl superhero. Both as unfortunate as the other because this was a really good film. I highly enjoyed myself through every minute of this latest Marvel installment. While it's not on the level of an epic Infinty War, Civil War, or any Avengers film, I feel like it easily takes its place by the side of Doctor Strange, Ant-Man, Spider-Man, or any of the introductory MCU films. Those being some of my favorites due to their ease of rewatchabilty. Much like this, those seem to have a fun factor that sets them apart from their longer more epic films. While those are the better films, they do take a certain mind frame to really get in the mood to rewatch. This one itself really shines in the way it deals with its story. It hasn't been a secret that Captain Marvel would be the most powerful hero we've seen so far in the MCU, & she definitely is. She's basically the equivalent of Superman when it comes to power levels in comparison to the rest. That's what's made it so hard to tell compelling Superman stories over the many years of his existence. When you're dealing with an overpowered superhero just their entrance into the game ends all threats. This film found a way to deal with that level of overpowerness perfectly, & that was the amnesia aspect. When this film opens Captain Marvel, the Kree warrior hero is already a thing. However, she has no idea she has a whole human life before all of this. This not only made for a very interesting sci-fi story, it was a great way to keep her overpowering in check until the grand finale. Powers which were so great, without spoiling anything, I questioned the grandness of the finale until they really upped the ante in the final moments. As I said in the first thoughts video, I can't wait to see this character find a matchup on her own level. It'll be an amazing sight. Now, a lot of the actors parts will be hard to really get into without spoilers. So, forgive me if I'm to vague in some character descriptions, as the misdirection in this film's advertising was real. Brie Larson was amazing as the title character. Once she finds out things aren't as she believes her character development is so on point, & she is pure greatness in this role. Samuel L Jackson's Nick Fury stole every scene he was in however. The de-aging process is now perfect, as he just looked like they picked him right out of A Long Kiss Goodnight. His back & forth with Carol Danvers was by far one of my favorite parts of this film. We had a very unique villain with a lot of depth in the form of Ben Mendelsohn's shapeshifting Skrull Talos. I was not expecting his performance at all. I was thinking we'd see some shades of Rogue One, but this character is 100% original in comparison. Jude Law also wasn't at all what I was expecting, & I really hope we get to see more of Yon-Rogg in the future. Annette Bening was one of the biggest surprises to me. Yet, she's also the hardest one to talk about without delivering spoilers. Layers of performance from her though, with bold decisions to the lore that actually work quite well. Can't go through the characters without mentioning Goose the cat, with a top notch acting performance in his debut role. Seriously though, I highly enjoyed, & recommend this film. Even with the comic knowledge filled head I have this kept me on my toes with all the surprises. They took liberties here & there, but all the decisions to stay worked. The 90s aspect brought me right back to my high school days. The moments of comic nostalgia were so naturally added. All in all this film is perfect for fans of the MCU as well as fans of great sci-fi. The Star Trek to Guardians of the Galaxy's Star Wars feel. A must see in the theater as well. The 3D was amazing as well. So, if you're a 3D fan, this is definitely worth the upgrade. Before signing off fully I must address the awesome tribute to Stan Lee. Not only his appearance, but the Marvel title screen. Applause rang out through the theater & almost brought tears to my eyes. Thanks again Stan. Also, make sure to catch both the after credit scenes.
I took an extra couple days from my first thoughts video (which you can see here), before I wrote this. I wanted to let this set in, so I could think about it, & really get into it, still without delivering any spoilers. This is probably one of the most spoiler heavy movies I've ever seen. As long as it was, I still don't know how they've crammed so much into this film. That's one of things you get going into Avengers: Infinity War . You get this sense immediately of how big this film is. Not just in cast, but in scale. From the time it starts, you can feel this is different from anything Marvel's done. Taking place directly after the end credit scene of Thor: Ragnarok , there's an essence of grandeur right from the beginning. This is almost immediately followed by a setting of the stakes. They want you to know that nothing is off limits, no punches are being pulled, & this is the beginning of the end. Or at least the end of the Marvel universe as we know it. Everything was leading up to this. All roads were leading to Thanos, & from the time he appears he makes it known that he is a force to be reckoned with. It doesn't take long at all to realize why we need the Avengers, the Guardians, & anything else we can throw at him. Thanos is not just an awesome display of power though. He is perfectly brought to life by Josh Brolin. A man who is starting to look like is incapable of not delivering some of the best performances we've ever seen. He brings so many layers to the Mad Titan, you almost start to empathize with him. That's a hard feat for a guy that wants to gather all the Infinity Stones to wipe out half the life in the galaxy. Thanos definitely steals the show when it comes to this film. Totally making it his film. That's not selling anyone else short either. All the heroes came to play as well. We're just at the point now where most of them ARE their respective characters now. It's hard to not see Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, or Chris Hemsworth as Iron Man, Cap, & Thor. The same goes for the whole Guardians cast. Even the newcomers in Tom Holland as Spiderman, & Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther have not just taken these roles, but own them. This is even the first time I really cared about Olsen & Bethany as Scarlet Witch & the Vision. The evolution of the whole Hulk story takes an unexpected turn in as this as well. Remember he's been gone through all of Civil War , so he don't even know about the split yet. Banner has a big role to play in times to come. The reunion between him an Widow was something I was really waiting for too. This film also has propelled Benedict Cumberbatch's Doctor Strange as one of my favorite Avengers. He keeps proving he was the only person for this role. Finally, on the side of good there were the Guardians of the Galaxy. This was one of the two most curious things for me going into this movie. The Guardians films have a certain distinct feel to them, different from the rest of the Marvel universe in a major way. I was wondering how seamlessly those styles could mesh, or if one would just have to borrow the others? They meshed perfectly. I couldn't believe how perfect. Some of the best parts of this film where in how perfectly these characters interacted, & it was their differences that made that so. The other curiosity I had going in, by the way, was the use of the Guantlet. If your not in the know on this one the Guantlet with the Infinity Stones allows the wielder power over everything. The mind, time, space, reality, the wielder has the powers of a God. This is a tricky thing to display in comics, much less film. I was glad to see them once again defy odds, & pull it off without flaw. Thanos uses every aspect of the Guantlet, & each effect is spectacular. Thanos isn't alone by the way. He brings his children into the fray as well. None shining more for me than Ebony Maw. Going up against Doctor Strange, this guy was every bit the stuff of nightmares. I wasn't really 100% invested in the others, but every action film needs cannon fodder. And action this film definitely delivers, while I've mentioned it. This movie opens fast & hard, & doesn't stop going at that pace until the credits role. The isn't a rollercoaster, it's a drop from a friggin elevator. In the third quarter this thing starts bouncing back & forth between an epic sci-fi battle, & an all out Lord of the Rings/Braveheart battle. Only for all of that to get totally overshadowed by a fourth quarter slobberknocker falling right on top of it all. This film has quickly moved to the number 1 spot on my personal Marvel list. From beginning to end & all the little surprises in between, I loved this movie. Might not choose the Fan Event next time though, as my only regret is I didn't see it in IMAX. This movie deserves to be seen as big as it can possibly be. They have their work cut out for them if they're going to top this in Avengers 4 , whatever it's SECRET name winds up being. Keep em comin Kevin Feige. Don't ever leave us. Anyway, that's my full thoughts, I'd really like to know yours as well. Put it in the comments, like, & share.