Thursday, May 16, 2019

Avengers: Endgame (2019) Spoiler Review

My spoiler-free look at Avengers: Endgame dropped the Tuesday after it came out (we saw it at 11:30 PM on the opening Friday) so if you have not seen the movie yet you probably want that one.

If you haven't read that piece yet, I'd recommend giving it a look before reading this one because they are intended to be companion pieces.

Another thing about doing this one now is that I have a real concern that it's going to come off like an episode of The Chris Farley Show where it's nothing more than me saying..."You remember that? It was awesome."

Regardless, it's happening so here we go. If you haven't seen Endgame, and don't want that movie spoiled stop right here and read the spoiler-free piece.

**SPOILERS BELOW FOR AVENGERS: ENDGAME**

In the spoiler-tags on the original piece I said this, "I think they did a really good job trading a bunch of pseudo-deaths for a handful of real ones."

The deaths aren't the only thing that makes this movie important or emotional, but they are a large part of it of course. These are far worse than Infinity War because you don't have that, "Well in the next movie they'll fix this" thing in play either.

This movie makes Infinity War even better once you have the full context of what was going on back then. Dr. Strange's conversation with Tony Stark about "being in the endgame" when he gave away the Time Stone for example takes on a different meaning as does the  face Strange makes when he sees the 1 in 14 million chance they have to defeat Thanos (Tony has to die obviously).

As a matter of fact of all the great scenes in Endgame, I think the moment where Tony realizes he has to wield the stones, and Strange confirms it by holding up one finger is my absolute favorite. Tony literally has the weight of world on his shoulders, he knows what he has to do, and he's going to do it even though it is going to cost him everything.

Another small example of Endgame a neat thing from IW to EG is Thanos telling Stark, "I hope they remember you" as we see the world of course will always remember Tony Stark/Iron Man as the man who saved the world.

One of the most controversial aspects of this film is the handling of Thor. I'm going to have to tell you that I come down on the positive site of that debate. I think there was a lot of heart in what was going on with him in this film despite it being played for laughs. It also took me back to his conversation with Rocket from IW.

In IW Thor is clearly in an emotional state, and that film is capped off with him failing to stop Thanos from snapping away half the universe, and many of his friends. It's a terrible burden to bear, and when he beheads Thanos yet it fixes nothing I can completely buy him becoming what he became.

More importantly though is that when the time came he stood up, dusted himself off, and became a hero again because that is what he is.

Cap also had a similar issue as Thor, and it was the inability to cope with the loss. Thanos throws that in Cap, Iron Man, and Thor's face even during the final showdown.

One of the best visuals in the entire film is Captain America standing against Thanos and his entire army. Cap has no reason to believe he can win that fight, but he's going to fight it anyway because that's what heroes do.

Of course I think I speak for all of us that we were glad that help arrived just in time and gave us what I would call THE best visual in the movie, and we finally see the Avengers....ASSEMBLE.

The movie did a good job of kind of messing with our expectations too in that The Avengers kill Thanos early in the film yet that doesn't solve the issue. The Snapped are still gone, and we find out that our heroes have to live with that failure for another 5 years before they get a second (and likely last) chance to make things right. It also allowed the movie to touch on the subject of grief a little bit which I thought was a nice touch in this type of movie. That kind of goes back to Thor's arc specifically, but applies to all of them to varying degrees.

As for what ends up happening five years later, the Time Heist is a fun way to give us a neat little retrospective of some of the films' biggest moment too. I think that's part of what makes this one such a nice wrap up of all the previous ones as well. They had a very large challenge that they had to take on, and the filmmakers handles it magnificently.

At this point, I kind of want to share some other great moments that haven't specifically been mentioned. This is kind of born out of how my conversations about movies go in general...What did you think about this part? My favorite part was this! Remember how cool this was? Etc.
  • Rocket slapping Thor was even better the second time I saw it.
  • Cap wielding Mjolnir was of course a fan-favorite moment.
  • Rhodey/War Machine explaining his "kill baby Thanos" plan was fantastic comedy, and the delivery really made it. Banner's response was perfect as well. 
  • A scene that my dad really appreciated was "Professor Hulk" being embarrassed at seeing himself during the Battle of New York, and  half-heartedly imitating that was amusing.
  • "I went for the head" by Thor was already mentioned, but the line specifically was a BIG moment too.
  • The way Captain Marvel banters with Spider-Man about the Infinity Gauntlet was a perfect beat for both characters I thought.

I could probably sit here and list moments for hours on end, but those were some of my absolute favorites. The movie was a tremendous experience, and I'm still fired up about seeing it again after my second viewing. That's a testament to how good, how much heart it has, and how funny Endgame is. It was like a comic book come to life, and it made me feel like a kid again.