The 'Not-So-Critical' Critic:
on AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR (2018, 149 minutes, PG-13)
The Quick of It -
So, if you haven’t heard… there is this film. It’s breaking records. There are reasons.
Why? Because they finally have a worthy adversary. Because there has been a storm brewing for years and the moment is here. Because the screen is only sharing the most interesting moments with the cleverest dialogue available. Oh, I should mention again, there is finally a bad ass villain.
The culmination for all these Marvel movies after the past decade has come… and went (wink, wink). The long list of notable heroes now face the mastermind that has plagued them since long before they, and we, realized he was pulling the strings. Known as the Mad Titan, Thanos finally has his eyes set on retrieving the Infinity Stones. These immensely powerful stones are the answer to his desire to cleanse the universe of ‘overpopulation’. You must understand, this is the core tenant that grounds his murderous design, not just blaming it on ‘evil’. You can relate for the briefest moment.
Iron Man was released in 2008, which was followed by the introductions of the core crew – Thor, Captain America, Hulk, and the other peripheral heroes. As I have always proclaimed, villains in the Marvel universe have been soft. For some reason, Marvel feels the need to make the bad guy seem evil, without any human connection remaining. The truth is, they should reside in the gray area. That is why DC villains reign supreme. Trust me, this is not coming from any Marvel-hate agenda. It is just when you compare them across the universes, Marvel’s model of storytelling heightens the sense of good vs. evil, which will often miss the mark by playing it safe.
Now we have Thanos, and he commanded the screen. Even his generals stood out. They were simple caricatures of highly-skilled villains, but they handled things within their brief appearances to make it exciting. The end result, a decent story with pure action and drama. To prove they had the right formula, this is a movie well over two hours and you don’t even notice. Not at all. The pacing was phenomenal, even for this large of a cast. In fact, I wanted to slap the lady next to me for bringing in her own food and making a ton of crinkly noise. If I only had the gauntlet...
As you have seen everyone demanding on social media, lips are sealed. No spoilers. Just take a night and see this on the big screen. You won’t be sorry… maybe sad, but not sorry.