Thursday, May 3, 2018

Avengers: Infinity War - Movie Review

Written by Shiggins

10 years, 19 movies, countless heroes!

In 2008, Iron Man crashed into cinemas. None of us predicted that in ten years time, we'd be able to sit down and watch as dozens of well-developed Marvel characters from an entire roster of bright and sparkling movies would be ganging up together in one of the biggest crossover movies of all time. And yet here we are, with the beginning of the climatic showdown that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been building up to for so long. So the big question is... Does it live up to the hype?

To Infinity War, and beyond!
NOTE: This is a spoiler-free review, however I will include spoilers at the bottom of the article. If you wish to avoid spoilers, then you may read until my score and do not go past the SPOILER STONE in the article. I warned you.

The film takes place right after the events of Black Panther and Thor Ragnarok, and is all about how Thanos has finally decided to get off his chair and start collecting the elemental gems known as "The Infinity Stones", so he can gain the most ultimate power in the universe. And the only ones who can stop him? The Avengers, of course! Oh and the Guardians of the Galaxy too. And maybe one or two others.

Just like the previous Avengers films, this is a very basic premise but one that will let the characters work out their own problems and get into some great action scenes. There are a few more twists and turns in this film than the others though, and some real shockers that had me grinning or gasping throughout. For all one can bicker or pick apart with this story, it certainly delivered when it wanted to, and still found time to focus on the characters like any good story should.

I think Iron Man's face during his scenes with the Guardians was just 100% done.
The action scenes themselves are nice and varied, with the focus on a far more personal level rather than an epic one. Battles against Thanos or his goons (The Black Order) rarely take place in any beguiling locations, but the movements and attacks of each hero feel brutal and distinctive. The film's range of powers is countless, from Iron Man's technology, to Doctor Strange's sorcery, to Drax the Destroyer's brutality. Everyone feels unique, and I'd argue that this is one of the film's biggest advantages. If you saw Doctor Strange move his hands around, you would know it is a Marvel movie. If you saw Bruce Willis holding a gun, you wouldn't be able to tell what movie it is from. The unique designs and movements keep everything iconic and noticeable, which leaves a very strong impression in your mind.

Of course, the characters themselves are all exemplary thanks to the previous movies that spent a decade building up this entire universe. Rather than waste time introducing new characters to the audience, Infinity War is able to instead resolve stories started by the franchise! This especially holds true for Thor's plot, as he gets a great return to form.

It shouldn't be understated that every actor and actress feels right at home in this film, almost effortlessly fitting back into the roles they have made iconic. Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pratt and the non-Chris' like Robert Downey Jr, Tom Holland, Benedict Cumberbatch, Scarlett Johansson, Chadwick Boseman, Don Cheadle, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Anthony Mackie, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel... So many actors and actresses working together and I don't think any of them faltered in this film. They're at the top of their game.

He didn't say "assemble"? MOVIE RUINED!
The real star of this story however is the antagonist himself, Thanos, played by Josh Brolin. Comic book movies have had a long and painful history with its villains, with the most recent failure being Justice League's Steppenwolf, but Thanos is one of the most interesting and complex villains I've seen in a long time. Brandon Sanderson once said "every man is the hero of his own story" and Thanos is a perfect example of how much of a villain this can create. Every action he takes is justified in his own warped sense of life and reality. He earns his nickname "The Mad Titan" through his actions and reasoning for doing so, but the truth is that he isn't beyond emotion or just your run-of-the-mill gleeful monster. I actually found myself intrigued by his actions, wondering how far he'd go, and the actions he chooses to further his goal are both fascinating and almost heartbreaking.

It has to be said that the CGI on Thanos is absolutely fantastic as well, to the level where I've actually seen some people say it looks too good. Thanos is almost unrecognisable from his previous appearance in Guardians of the Galaxy, but the technology on display here is stunning. You can see every pore on his bald purple head. You can see the moistness of his eyes. And although some of the other effects don't look anywhere near as realistic as he does, they are still a joy to behold and watch. How can one not simple love watching the Hulkbuster run around fighting aliens, or seeing a scary villain wrestle with Vision?

Thanos is coming to the wrong planet!
It probably sounds like I think this film is perfect, but sadly there are two major flaws to this ground-breaker, and both of them were unavoidable.

The most obvious one is obvious because obvious; There are too many characters. Now, I adore almost every single character in this film and so many of them are able to have at least one moment of glory or wit. However, the simple fact is that Infinity War has a time limit and therefore, not everyone can have more than one moment. Characters like Thor, Gamora and Scarlet Witch get just the right amount of time, but others such as Black Widow and Winter Soldier get almost nothing. I think Wong got more than Bucky!

The second problem is more complicated. Unlike previous films, this is not the build-up of something new but rather the beginning of the end. This means that there is no time spent waiting or raising the tension, and instead you are immediately thrust into the story with almost no time to breathe. The pacing is constantly having to bounce from one extreme to the other, with gut-punching drama and fast action switching places before you can fully process them. It can leave you in a daze, as you try to get a grip on what is happening next.

I will say though, that I was surprised how fun some of these combos were. Thor and Rocket? What a team!
However, these problems were always going to exist. I can literally not picture a way to have this film exist without these issues, and for what its worth, Infinity War does the best it can to handle them by keeping a consistent and engaging tone. The drama is heavy and the jokes are fun but infrequent, meaning this is one of the darkest films of Marvel's history. Do not go in thinking everyone will be okay. You are going to see death. It is going to hurt you.

Avengers; Infinity War is arguably the most ambitious movie of the MCU, but its a gamble that I personally adored. It carries unavoidable baggage that keeps it from soaring as high as some of the other Marvel movies, and it can feel somewhat stretched at times, but this is a truly epic superhero film that does its characters and audience proud. Delivering one of comic books' greatest stories to the big screen was no small task, but strong writing and direction by the Russo brothers has somehow managed to bring out its potential. And Thanos is damn cool too.

Movie Rating: 9/10.

Best Performance: Josh Brolin as Thanos.

Best Part: Thanos makes a choice.

Worst Part: So little Bucky. So little time.


Okay, we ready to go full spoilers?

You sure?


Let's start with the Black Order, since I want to get them out of the way first. Corvus Glave, Ebony Maw, Proxima Midnight and Cull Obsidian might be some of the most badass names I've ever heard, but their personality are almost non-existent, with the exception of Ebony Maw. They have very fun designs ripped straight from the comics and provide excellent fights, but it is a shame that Thanos was the only antagonist to actually captivate us this time. I understand that the Black Order weren't the focus, but it's still a shame that they couldn't have had more quirks or traits to set them apart. Cull doesn't even speak English!

Speaking of uninteresting aliens, we have the "Outriders". To put it simply, these are the newest iteration of "the army". We've had the orcs, Chitari, the blob-things from Suicide Squad, the Ultron robots, the Parademons, and now we have the Outriders. A group of useless monsters who exist to be slaughtered and pose almost no real threat to the heroes. To die and die until the villains with actual importance come in. In the film's small defence, their is a larger savagery to these enemies than most armies, but it is still just another army that exists so everyone can have something to do.

Everything about the Iron Spider was awesome. Can't wait to play it in September!
Now that my complaints are out of the way, let's talk about the good stuff! First of all, holy shit Red Skull actually came back! In 2011's First Avenger film, we saw that Nazi bastard get teleported away by the Tesseract to an undisclosed location. So after seven years of speculation and theorising, it was great to see his reappearance. Fittingly, he has been suffering alone for countless years and unable to even go near the Soul Stone, due to his own hatred and solitude. His appearance resembled that of Death itself, which I found a nice reference to the comic book portrayal of Thanos' partner/lover Lady Death. No matter the adaptation, some sort of Death is Thanos' ally. Due to Hugo Weaving being weird about the character, Red Skull was instead portrayed by Ross Marquand (Walking Dead), who did a fine job of giving the villain a broken yet wiser demeanour. Sadly, I have a bad feeling that this is the last time we'll ever see the redheaded Nazi, despite being Captain America's biggest villain with tons of potential.

Now, let's talk about the deaths, since that's what everyone will come out of the cinema thinking about. To start off with, we lost both Heimdall and Loki. Two huge stars and regulars of the MCU, broken down by Thanos with ease. After that, the Collector was implied to have been murdered by Thanos. Next up was the most emotional of the deaths so far, Gamora. And Gamora's death deserves special mention as it developed Thanos' character in ways I never thought we'd get to see. How far he was willing to go, and how much he actually did care for Gamora. His history with Gamora is disturbing and abusive, but he did grow to care about her. As the Soul Stone proved, which means we can't deny it. No matter how much we wish we could.

He Frieza'd it.
However, not all the deaths are as (seemingly) permanent as those ones. The final few minutes of the film is one of the most devastating and memorable scenes I've ever seen in a superhero movie, where dozens of characters disappear into ashes by Thanos' final power after he cruelly makes Scarlet Witch's sacrifice of Vision useless. Winter Soldier, Black Panther, all of the Guardians except Rocket, Scarlet Witch, Falcon, Doctor Strange and even poor Spider-Man. And while I am 100% convinced that these final deaths will be reversed soon, my heart just couldn't stay strong as I watched Peter Parker beg Tony Stark to save him from death. I had forgotten that Peter is just a kid, until that very scene.

Oh but Valkyrie and Korg better be safe. I know some Asgardians escaped, but the MCU will be my mortal enemy if one rock on that beautiful creature's face is gone!

Speaking of beautiful creatures, Peter Dinklage was in this movie! And although he was not any of the characters I expected him to be, his role was a great one as he played the weaponsmith and last of the Dwarves of Nidavellir, Eitri. He helped complete Thor's story in this film by crafting the Stormbreaker weapon, which comic readers will know eventually became owned by Beta Ray Bill! And it looks like the weapon of the Ultimate Thor too, so there's that to consider.

In fact, I want to give special mention to Thor again. Chris Hemsworth is perfect in this film as the cocky, angry and determined Thor who wants revenge against Thanos for the death of Loki and the Asgardians, but I was surprised to see just how tragic his character had actually become over the years. In the span of the past ten years, Thor has lost his friends, his family, his home, and even his hammer. The scene where he emotionally talked to Rocket about what he has lost... I just can't forget it. With so much going on, you almost forget just how painful Thor's life has become and the utter tragedy behind the character's facade. I hope he survives to live a new life on Earth. I want him to be happy.

Lastly, the post-credit scene! While I admit to letting out a huge disappointing sigh as Nick Fury was disappearing as well, mostly because I miss him so much, he did at least provide us with a glimpse at the upcoming Captain Marvel! I have no idea what they're going to do to fight Thanos in the next Avengers film, but I know I'll be there to cheer them all on.

Did you enjoy the film? The review? Comment below!

I am... officially missing the adult version of Groot now.

Shiggins:[Admin]   .
Born under the stars of the Dark Gods, Shiggins owns the power of the Great Eye and is utterly magnificent in his omniscience. If you dare to discover more about someone as great as him, then go ahead. And to all my friends and family members, YOU are wrong and I should be disappointed! Not the other way round!,. You can find out about him or ask him stuff on or go to his tumblr page


  1. Thanos vs the marvel cinematic universe or Avengers infinity war felt like watching cinematic history unfold. Imagine telling someone 10 years ago 60 characters in one movie most being fully developed characters would walk talk and fight in what's shaping up to be the biggest movie of the decade and going to be about superheroes. I remember reading an article which was saying this movie is similar to a season finale of a tv show. I feel that's probably the best way to compare the reward one receives for investing into these characters and this world. Infinity war is one big celebration of the very idea that the MCU made it this far. That odd moment when Marvel is killing the villain game lately going from Killmonger to Thanos.
    Now if only it had Thanos pimp slapping the heroes then flying of in his Thanos helicopter then it would be perfect.

    By the way Shiggins how are you? Will you write a YINP anytime soon and have you seen any of the recent new anime

    1. Trust me, I grew up with the Marvel cartoons when I was younger and that young boy would never have been able to predict that this cinematic historical event would unfold. This film was such a huge gamble to work towards, but it has paid off in ways I don't think we're even aware of yet. Some will scoff because its a comic book movie, but you and I understand perfectly.

      Oh yeah, the Helicopter Stone is one of the stones in the sequel.

      And I'm fine, thank you. I've been watching a few of this year's anime, including Devilman Crybaby, Violet Evergarden, Steins; Gate 0 and Darling in the Franxx. All are definitely worth a watch. As for a WINP article, I have been considering it but I need to pick the right series first of all. If you have any requests, please don't hesitate to suggest/ask!