“Avengers: Infinity War” – Spoiler-free Movie Review

The culmination of a decade’s worth of planning is coming to a close. Do NOT allow yourself to be spoiled. I will not put spoilers in this review. Please spoiler guard comments with the appropriate tags, as well.

Cast and Crew Information

Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark / Iron Man
Chris Hemsworth as Thor
Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner / Hulk
Chris Evans as Steve Rogers / Captain America
Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow
Don Cheadle as James Rhodes / War Machine
Benedict Cumberbatch as Dr. Stephen Strange
Tom Holland as Peter Parker / Spider-Man
Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa / Black Panther
Zoe Saldana as Gamora
Karen Gillan as Nebula
Tom Hiddleston as Loki
Paul Bettany as Vision
Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff / Scarlet Witch
Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson / Falcon
Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes / Winter SOldier
Idris Elba as Heimdall
Danai Gurira as Okoye
Peter Dinklage as Eitri
Benedict Wong as Wong
Pom Klementieff as Mantis
Dave Bautista as Drax
Vin Diesel as Groot
Bradley Cooper as Rocket
Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts
Benicio del Toro as Taneleer Tivan / The Collector
Josh Brolin as Thanos
Chris Pratt as Peter Quill / Star-Lord
William Hurt as Thaddeus Ross
Letitia Wright as Shuri
Terry Notary as Cull Obsidian
Tom Vaughan-Lawlor as Ebony Maw
Carrie Coon as Proxima Midnight
Michael Shaw as Covus Glaive
Stan Lee as Bus Driver
Winston Duke as M’Baku
Florence Kasumba as Ayo
Kerry Condon as Friday
Jacob Batalon as Ned

Written by Christopher Markus as Stephen McFeely
Directed by Anthony as Joe Russo

Premise

Thanos, the Mad Titan, is gathering the Infinity Stones in an effort to bring balance to the Universe by killing half of its population.

High Point

Getting the band back together.

Low Point

There are some moments where CGI characters don’t interact with other characters in quite the right way. Yes, the worst part of this movie is a minor nitpick.

The Review

There are original elements in this, but it draws much of its inspiration from two of the five Marvel miniseries with the word Infinity in the name. I give it 5 out of 6.

The effects are almost flawless, but not quite, which is pretty impressive given how many visual effects there are. By that, I mean I don’t know if there is a single frame of footage in its 149 minute runtime that doesn’t include at least one visual effect, and many probably have hundreds. I give it 5 out of 6.

The story is shockingly well structured. You can see how large the cast is above, yet nobody feels neglected (including those I omitted as their mere presence can be considered spoilers), we come to understand Thanos, and every scene has a purpose for the overall plot. I give it 6 out of 6.

The acting works because the groundwork has already been laid. This cast have already grown to know these characters, and they have a great grasp on them. There isn’t room to add dimensions, but they do recall the dimensions added in earlier outings. I give it 6 out of 6.

The production is excellent. Editing was masterful, and Silvestri’s score is right on point. I’ve heard people criticize it for being unmemorable, but the audience I saw this with reacted to the opening chord the first time we heard it. This is a film on a nearly impossible scale, and it succeeds. I give it 6 out of 6.

The emotional response is excellent. Some beats are familiar to comic fans, but they still had impact when they came. I give it 6 out of 6.

Overall, this positions us for the end of this chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe next spring. The next two releases, Ant-Man and the Wasp and Captain Marvel, are known to take place before this film. This is less Empire Strikes Back and more Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers in terms of plot and story structure, as no more stories can be told in the Marvel Cinematic Universe without addressing these events. I regret falling behind on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. because of this film. Seriously, see it before you get spoiled. 6 out of 6.

In total, Avengers: Infinity War receives 40 out of 42.

22 replies on ““Avengers: Infinity War” – Spoiler-free Movie Review”

  1. Brian says:

    My thoughts.

    That ending. Good gravy. I’m still processing it (and have my theories)

    My personal low point was Dinklage’s scenes. He came off wooden and weird. Like he didn’t know how to act in those scenes (though the character itself was a good laugh). It was just a little disappointing since I know he can be awesome (like GoT).

    The score isn’t spectacular, the critics aren’t off the mark. I think we’ve now attached a certain emotional impact to the Avenger’s theme and that’s what people are reacting to.

    But those are minor quibbles. The film was epic in every sense of the word. I cannot wait until Part 2 comes out.

  2. Really afraid of spoilers, so I am spoiler guarding everything.

    There’s a lot of spoilery things one could talk about, even acknowledging that this is the first half of a story ends up taking some sting out of the climax. As soon as you see some of he characters who have confirmed movies coming out go away, you know there’s going to be a hard reset.

    Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. didn’t seem to reference this, except for a single comment in the most reset episode about ‘Have you seen what’s going on in New York?’ ‘I can’t watch the news.’ They need to do a whole season worth of episodes in the time between this movie and the next. I figure a time jump like this seasons opener would have been the best way to handle it, but they just did that. It’s like bad timing.

    • Blackadder says:

      My thought on the SHIELD episode is that its happening while the movie is happening. I think there might be more fallout in next weeks episode.

      • lost says:

        I’m not sure there will be much more than a couple of mentions of the chaos in New York. The reason for that is because as far as the Shield gang is concerned, they’ll almost certainly never see the results of the movie ending, at least not as we did. They’ll see whatever “fixed” timeline occurs. Because of that, I highly doubt they’ll comment much on it because they would know what’s happening as of the conclusion of the next movie and, while the producers probably do have some inside information there, they’re not likely to do anything spoilery.

        Also, even if the Shield people do know what’s going on, they have their own important things to deal with. Stopping the destruction of Earth would seem to be at least as important as the Thanos situation given Thanos’s actual motivation.

  3. J_W_W says:

    Wow, just wow.

    However, the good thing about the ending is that a Deus Ex Machina killing of half of everyone can be undone with Deus Ex Machina.

    This is how you pay off building a universe over 10 years!!

    • JD DeLuzio says:

      I enjoyed the movie a great deal. I am, however, a bit surprised by the shocked reactions.

      1. We’re watching part one of a two-parter. Obviously, it must end badly for the heroes.

      2. The central McGlovin changes the nature of reality. Many of the dead have contracts for future movies as their characters. Obviously, no one has to stay dead.

      3. Who wouldn’t want to see a movie with the following line:
      “He’s from space. He came here to steal a necklace from a wizard.”

  4. Brian says:

    Interesting to note: Black Panther jumped from #8 at the box office last weekend to #5 this weekend. Either folks are rewatching it or people that haven’t watched it went to “catch up.” Maybe a bit of both.

    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/?yr=2018&wknd=17&p=.htm

    • If I had a chance, I’d love to “double feature” the two of them.

      • Brian says:

        Makes me wonder if, leading up to Avengers IV, some enterprising theater runs a multi-day marathon leading up to its premiere.

        I wonder if Alamo would do such a thing (God the damage to my wallet though)

        • I remember This Week In Marvel, their podcast, doing the one for Age of Ultron, and cut and pasted the interviews and such between the movies for one podcast where you could hear the hosts getting more and more punch drunk. It always seemed like fun.

          • Brian says:

            I just did the math, by next year that’ll be 22 movies (including Avengers IV). That would have to be four days at a minimum.

            A grand, glorious four days.

            :::Queue Blaine to break down the details:::

            • I think it needs 8 hour breaks to let people sleep and shower. 24 to 36 hours is one thing, but a bunch of sleepy, unwashed geeks by the time they have to watch their favorite hero die and it could get ugly.

            • I’ve got a spreadsheet in progress that has everything, including the Netflix and network series, catalogued in release order. It’s a LOT of hours.

              • Did it include Sony and Fox? Because with the impending merger, they may be MCU-but-alternate canon.

                • Only “Spider-Man: Homecoming.” I’m betting that the merger will mean a reboot for X-Men and Fantastic Four alike. FF because only Pixar has gotten it right so far, and X-Men because there will be a lot of them and Disney/Marvel pays less and will need to renegotiate all the talent contracts, so that’s easiest with a clean slate and an all new cast. Who knows? Maybe Wolverine will actually be short this time.

  5. Ogre says:

    Just saw it last night – my daughter “twisted my arm” because her friends were spoiling things at school. Going to spoiler the rest just in case:

    My daughter is 13 and after watching it she brought up the Dr. Strange on Titan sequence: frankly I was impressed that she came to the conclusion that he gave up the time stone due to the fact that in the one future timeline in which Thanos was defeated, Iron Man must play a significant role and giving Thanos the time stone in exchange for Tony Stark’s life was the only way to ensure the good guys win.

    As far as complaints (strictly nit picking here), I almost wish Marvel had kept a lid on other upcoming movies until after part 2 comes out so that we didn’t know what the future holds for the heroes. Additionally I wish they had released Ant-Man and The Wasp and Captain Marvel prior to this so that the continuity of the story was better maintained. And while I understand that the MCU is geared towards a family demographic and the Netflix shows are more adult in nature, I would have also liked to have seen a cameo of The Defenders & The Punisher reacting to what was going on. Basically just 30 seconds of “WTF”. A cut scene showing these characters living and/or dying as a result of Thanos’ finger snap would have been a great service to the fans IMHO.

    Other thoughts:
    1) I’ve tried watching Agents of S,H.I.E.L.D. twice and just can’t get into it. Am I missing any serious plot points as a result?
    2) I can’t wait until everything is out on DVD/streaming so that i can spend 2 weeks of vacation watching everything in chronological order.
    3) I’m sorry, but I don’t think DC will ever be able to match the work that Marvel has done on the movie franchises.
    4) Sorry if all this seems a bit rambling but I’m celebrating a $40k sale at work this evening by enjoying an adult beverage (or 3).

  6. Ogre says:

    ADMINS/MODS, something went wrong with my spoiler tags – please delete my post or fix it!!!!!

    • On it. It did something weird like that to me, ending the Spoiler tag at the end of a paragraph.

      • Ogre says:

        Thanks a bunch. I messaged Blaine on Facebook to try and get it fixed as well. I don’t think it would have given anything in particular away but I really don’t want to ruin things for anyone.

        • Yeah, I think you were safe, just listing what wasn’t present. Also, I strongly suspect there aren’t many people reading this far down that haven’t already seen it.

  7. Ooooor, Agents of SHIELD could name drop Thanos repeatedly in S05E20, which makes sense since this was supposed to be the weekend that the movie dropped.

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