Last March, before the release of Avengers: Infinity War, Marvel Studios’ Kevin Feige gave an interview where he addressed fans’ obsession over characters dying in a finale. He pointed out how one of the greatest finales ever, Star Trek: The Next Generation’s “All Good Things…” wasn’t about death, instead it ended with Captain Picard doing what he always should’ve done with the crew (play poker). Without spoiling anything, Avengers: Endgame is the “All Good Things…” for the MCU in more ways than just how it addresses closure for the original six Avengers. It truly is a culmination of the last twenty two films, while also not bringing the MCU as a whole to a close…after all Phase 4 is just around the corner.
As you probably gathered from the trailers and TV spots over the last couple of months, the movie picks up not long after the events in Avengers: Infinity War where Thanos successfully wiped out half of the universe. Marvel’s Infinity Gauntlet is one of the most iconic comic events in the last thirty years, and they actually did that in the last movie. The surviving Avengers hatch a plan to face Thanos again and use the stones to reverse what he did…only things don’t go according to plan.
Anything beyond that is what you haven’t seen in any of the promotional material, and that’s only within the first twenty minutes or so of a three-hour movie. So to say anything beyond what happens after they head into space to face Thanos would be a huge spoiler, as what does happen will be shocking to some and one of the more interesting things they did with the story. If you really pay attention to the trailers, TV spots, and promo art that’s out there and look at how the character’s look different in various scenes you can kind of figure it out, but I won’t spoil it in this review.
The remaining two-and-a-half hours after the footage you’ve already seen is an epic, mind-blowing, and nostalgic MCU adventure that really pays off the twenty-two movies that led to this. Much like how “All Good Things…” rewarded those who were with Star Trek: The Next Generation through all seven seasons, Avengers: Endgame is a hugely satisfying payoff for those MCU fans who have been here since the beginning. The movie features some things fans have waited years to see on the big screen, and there’s something that will cause more cheers than Thor’s arrival in Wakanda in the previous movie.
Again, I won’t spoil anything in this review but I will say that some character stories are brought to a close while others have new doors opened to be explored in Phase 4. Everyone wants to know what happens with Tony and Cap, and for the latter I will say that in my opinion the resolution to his story is easily one of the highlights of the entire MCU. I’m sure fans are going to endlessly debate the decision they came to, and I hope it doesn’t become another one of those Luke in The Last Jedi things where YouTubers latch on to it and make daily videos just to complain about it over and over, but I absolutely loved it. Markus and McFeely have been there writing Cap from the beginning in The First Avenger, and they bring a perfect resolution to Steve Rogers’ story. Even writing this and thinking back on it makes me emotional since it’s so perfect.
Avengers: Endgame feels like a reward for those who stuck with the MCU from the beginning. You don’t have to be intimately familiar with the history of the twenty-two movie cinematic universe to enjoy the three-hour epic, but those who are will be blown away at what the Russos and Markus & McFeely pulled off here. There are endings, and some tears, but there’s a very changed MCU out there to explore in the movies coming after this. It’s the ending to one era of the MCU, but the beginning of a new one and there are some really interesting strands that were started where certain characters will be following this movie.
I can still remember seeing the first Iron Man in theaters back in 2008, and have seen every MCU movie theatrically and multiple times over the eleven years since. Avengers: Endgame was everything I expected in a finale to the Infinity Saga, and was satisfying in every way a movie could be. It’s a giant thank you from Marvel Studios to the fans for their eleven years of support. And it’s an incredible movie you won’t soon forget.
Movie: [usr 5]