Avengers: Infinity War reviewed

All the Marvel movies have been leading up to this. Superheroes from all corners of the universe joined forces in one epic film (of two acts). Infinity War is without question the biggest movie event of the year. Browsing the Avengers sessions, I can’t remember the last time a VMAX session sold out. This is different. This is war.

 

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Galaxy of megastars

Tickets for this sequel went on sale about a month before the release. From the start, they were in high demand. As the moment drew closer, the sessions filled up. I thoroughly enjoyed Black Panther in February, which was a massive hit both critically and commercially. While becoming one of the highest grossers ever, it was merely the appetiser to the main course. T’challa and Wakanda were role players in this star-studded lineup.

 

Weighing in at 2.5 hours, Avengers packed a lot. There were many subplots, many twists and turns, and yes, endless action. Big fight scenes, cross-matches, humour, and eye popping visuals dominated the landscape. Given its high ambitions, the production lived up to the hype. The film was able to balance the myriads of story lines, and look cool in doing so. Shout out to the Guardians team; they were a real treat.

 

 

Stuck with me

However, Peter Dinklage’s limited role was what stuck with me. The Game of Thrones actor was memorable as a Thanos victim who bumps into Thor. The whole cinema relished his performance. Indeed, the movie thrived in these serendipitous connections, with superheroes and agents finding each other in the galaxy. Strangers became friends as they put their differences aside and banded together to reclaim the universe.

 

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Two teams

There were two main sides: Captain America’s and Team IronMan. This follows their falling out in the 2016 offering, Civil War. While the players were mostly the same, the guardians of the galaxy barge in this time. While Antman is missing, Spider-Man remains with Stark. Dr Strange also joins their troupe. Black Panther helps Cap, even as Hulk bounces between the two sides. From outer space, Thor joins the party to aid Wakanda and Cap’s losing team. Will the god of thunder be enough to turn the tide?

 

The antagonist Thanos seeks the six Infinity stones to own the universe, and he will give anything to get his hands on them. He wreaks great havoc on the cosmos and will stop at nothing, not even murder and genocide. This sets up a kickass cinematic experience. As Thanos scours the galaxy, and leaves a trail of destruction across the board, the Avengers realise their greatest strength: each other. Who will prevail in this battle of battles? Would Thanos sweep all six stones and rule the universe? Well, you can bet that they won’t go down without one helluva fight. A little heads-up: there’s an incredible scene late in the film that is reminiscent of Coldplay’s ‘The Scientist’ music video. Time moving backwards in the ultimate undo… this is cinematography at its finest.

 

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Demanding

My verdict? This is a good movie that puts a lot of pieces together and does so admirably. While having a killer story, and an equally killer cast, it seems to demand a lot. Others have even recommended a double take to soak everything in. That’s where Avengers comes short: one-hero pictures like Dr Strange and Black Panther allow you some space. This one is too full of stars that it’s a little blinding and distracting. The inclusion of new avengers has made this a bigger and more confusing odyssey than prior instalments. Rest assured though that this is INFINITELY better than Avengers 2. Thanos, in spite his infamy, is night and day compared to Ultron. However, avoid getting too absorbed to this picture, as part 2 hits cinemas come next year.

 

One last thing: don’t stop at the end credits. There is a final scene waiting for you at the close.

 

***(out of four)

 

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