This is incredibly difficult, to try and review a film that has kept everything shrouded in secrecy. I’ll do my best to remain spoiler-free for those of you that haven’t seen it.
At the end of Avengers: Infinity War, the villain Thanos (Josh Brolin) snapped his fingers and erased half of the universe from existence. Now, we have to deal with the fallout. Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr) and Nebula (Karen Gillan) are floating through space, helpless and on the verge of running out of oxygen. On Earth, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) is hopeless, trying to find a solution alongside Natasha (Scarlett Johansson), Rhodey (Don Cheadle), and Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo). We finally see what’s been happening with Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner) since the snap occurred, as well as how Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) returns from the quantum realm. From the Guardians, all that remains is Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper), alone on a strange planet.
This movie also features Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) as she encounters the Avengers. I won’t spoil some other very surprising characters that appear.
Every single thing.
Now, here’s my perspective. I’ve seen every Marvel Cinematic Universe film many many times and I’m super invested in this world. This movie is made for the fans. If you’ve missed some films or aren’t super interested in what’s already happened, this film may not have the same impact on you. As a fan, this movie had everything I wanted (and even things I never would have thought to ask for).
It’s three hours long, but it didn’t feel three hours long. The times when it felt slow, it was intentional. Our characters are mourning, it shouldn’t be nonstop action. It also covers a lot of ground, with the entire plot kept under wraps. Going in, I had no idea what our cast would be doing for the three-hour runtime. And I loved that.
This is also a chance for our original six Avengers to really shine, especially considering how huge our cast has gotten. Some folks complained about Infinity War that it put characters like Steve Rogers and Black Widow in the backseat (and didn’t even feature Hawkeye). Here, they all get moments to shine. They’re complemented by other characters, including a great performance from Paul Rudd as Ant-Man and some more nuance to the character of Nebula, played by Karen Gillan.
Without spoiling the plot, it’s buckwild. This is stuff that I never would’ve hoped for, but is a love letter to the 21 films that predated this one, even making you appreciate some of those older films more after watching this one. It’s a crazy adventure but it totally works, resulting in a climax that is everything my 10-year-old self dreamt of and may be the most intense climax in a superhero movie to date.
What doesn’t work?
The only people that will leave disappointed are those that are far removed from this world and therefore not affected by this. If you haven’t seen all the films, if you’re just a casual moviegoer, this film won’t hit you as hard as diehard fans.
For those that live and breath these films, this is a satisfying climax in many ways. There’s intense action, yet plenty of smaller character moments that really reward you for ten years of following this franchise. See this on the biggest and best screen you can find, it’s definitely worth it.