April 29th, 2019
“Avengers: Endgame” – Marvel’s Record-Breaking Film
After eleven years and 21 films of interconnected cinematic storytelling, “we’re in the endgame now.” “Avengers: Endgame”
is the 22nd film from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. My 7 and 9 (nearly 8 and 10) year old boys and I were among millions around the world that saw this epic film on opening night.
The film delivers in its promise of finality after a poignant trip down memory lane for many of the franchise’s most enduring characters. While newer heroes like Ant-Man, Rocket Raccoon, and Captain Marvel have their roles to play, Endgame is squarely focused on the original six Avengers and amounts to a celebration of the saga’s roots.
The film takes you on an emotional roller coaster. It begins with a post-apocalyptic atmosphere, where you can truly feel the frustration andanger
of those that survived the genocide that the villain Thanos carried out at the end of Avengers: Infinity Wars. My boys, who have grown up on these films (“chest blasting” and throwing make-shift shields at each other), were ready to leave thirty minutes into this three-hour long finale. This exasperating feeling finally gave way to hope – as a plan to fix past mistakes emerged. Of course, our mood was also raised by the comedic relief that Marvel so brilliantly interjects into dire circumstances. The world of “Endgame” is marked by trauma and loss, and the film pulls off the magic trick of both letting the audience live in that loss along-side our heroes while also providing enough levity and comedy to lighten the mood when appropriate.
The more MCU that you have seen the more you will appreciate this film, as it commemorates the films that have come before it. Die-hard MCU fans will notice all the small (and the not-so-small) call-outs to previous events. These moments are a reminder of the journey that preceded “Endgame” and an indispensable part of the overall experience. Endgame is an artful tribute to nearly all that came before.
The film is highlighted by several touchingly human moments between the characters. There is, of course, a big, bombastic action scene at the film’s climax that goes above and beyond anything we’ve seen before. Well before the end of the film, my boys and I were among many that had cheered out loud in a theater full of enthused fans. The teenagers behind us could no-longer remain quiet and made their excitement known. My 9 year old had to join in. He had the entire theater laughing during the final scene with Thanos when he timely blurted out, “Will you just die already?” The film was thrilling, exhilarating and at times hilarious, but also deeply sad and contemplative. As I have heard more than once leaving the theater after an MCU film, “that was the best movie ever, dad.”
“Part of the journey is the end.” And when it comes to Marvel, the end is unpredictable. So go enjoy the journey before someone spoils it for you.
Image courtesy of The Wrap.