This is late, but I think it’s finally time for me to talk about my thoughts on Avengers: Infinity War which I mostly liked, but felt was kind of jumbled and had weird character beats, and felt distinctly like a long extended movie climax. To illustrate this feeling, I’m going to make this a gimmick article where the whole thing is written in one long paragraph. This way, you will all know my pain… Onto the movie, the main thing I liked was how the story was almost positioned as a “Thanos hero’s journey”, even though he’s an insane fool with too much power. I kind of wish they went all in on that concept, and really just made the main Marvel stars supporting players in a movie firmly centred around him. Like, his team of goons would take on the roles of the quipping heroes, while the heroes would be the flat foes they would have to fight every once in a while to break up those pesky talking scenes where characters aren’t punching each other. Maybe give Carrie Coon something more substantial to do since she’s playing a character named PROXIMA MIDNIGHT and is also Carrie Coon. Have Ebony Maw (AKA Squidward) also do more things, and absolutely do not kill him in the first half since he’s the best character in the movie. If he had to die, they should have played it as a grand sacrifice on the scale of the heroes dying in other films. Honestly, I say this about a fictional character at least once a month, but Ebony Maw is my spirit animal. I genuinely liked him more than Thanos himself, who I actually don’t think is all that deep a character. A lot of the analysis around him seems to be about how he “may have a point” or how he’s a character with tangible and understandable motivations. No he isn’t! He’s insane! That’s the whole point to his character. Josh Brolin’s gravitas and tears have tricked tons of people into thinking Thanos may have a point, but he absolutely does not. His plan is to enact the most heinous genocide in the history of the universe. It is literally the worst thing a person can do or want, but the character plays it as a noble heroic journey and personal sacrifice to him, right down to murdering his own daughter (in a scene I found to be unintentionally humorous). He contrasts with the heroes because they are all indecisive about an uncertain path of righteousness, while Thanos is always sure about his horribly dumb plan. His entire being, everything about him, from his motivations, to his actions, to that “optimistic” shot of hi at the end of the film, to the “Thanos Will Return” message after the credits; it’s all one extended gag. The filmmakers structured a heroic journey around a character who could not possibly be considered a hero under any logical criteria, and the funniest thing about this joke, is that a lot of people took it seriously and thought Thanos was a sympathetic antagonist with a compelling motivation. Part of the gag is the actual heroes of the film seemed like failures compared to him, and no, I don’t consider Peter Quill to be the “real” villain of the film as many have said. He screwed up sure, but considering the circumstances, that Thanos forced him choose to “kill” the love his life, and then kill her instead later on, it’s understandable why he lost it. What I personally hated was that he was killed at the end along with half the other heroes. Are they really gonna save the conclusion of his character arc for the third Guardians movie? Really Marvel? Also, it is so clear from watching this film that they had no clue how big Black Panther was going to be. Not only did he get repeatedly clowned in this film (Cap put up a better fight against Thanos than he did, which, no), he also disappeared like the other chumps at the end. Hopefully they learn to put respect on his name in the next phase when Marvel has more time to fully understand what it is they have in their hands. Almost as baffling as the Panther shafting was how they treated Bucky in this film. I don’t even like the character, but they built this dude up for half a decade, gave him a new arm and everything, but in this film he did jack squat and then disappeared into dust. Ok. But they absolutely had to give the Vision and Scarlet Witch some screentime, even though those two absolutely suck. I really hope the Vision’s and Gamora’s death stick (I don’t for one second believe they actually killed off Loki though). The former because I hate him, and the latter because I’d love to see how that plays out in Guardians Volume 3, where Peter has to basically move on from the worst thing that could possibly happen and finally grow up. Also, it would help the film have SOME impact befitting the hype the writers and producers gave it. Unfortunately, with the presence of time travel shenanigans constantly looming (hello Deadpool 2), I don’t know if anything will be permanent, but it’s at least nice to see the characters feel the pain that they are feeling presently, and enjoying how these horrific events are hurting them. We all know it isn’t real, but the emotions the characters are going through are tangible, and it’s written as real for them. They feel like the world has ended for them, and honestly, that’s enough for me at the moment. It’s kind of meta too, how a movie where the villain thinks there are too many people, has its major flaw be that there are too many characters, and that at the end the villain conveniently fixes that issue as a set up to the next film. Dang, maybe Thanos really is the true hero of the story! In all seriousness though, it was a fun film, but it is one I genuinely can’t imagine myself going to see again. Folks, it was nearly 3 hours! I hate that a film can even legally be that long. It’s baffling that there were so many repeat viewers to this thing. I mean, could you guys stomach reading THIS paragraph again?
Quote of the Day:
“Fun isn’t something one considers when balancing the universe. But this… does put a smile on my face.”
– Thanos, from the promotional material, because the line was apparently cut from the film which is a shame because it sounded like a cool thing for a villain to say, though I acknowledge it would have been out of character for Thanos to say that given all of his man-pain.