It’s all been leading up to this.
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After 10 years and 18 movies, the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes together in the most monumental team up in the history of film.
This isn’t just the biggest superhero movie ever, this is the biggest movie of all time.
Over 70 Marvel characters from across the franchise’s Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy and more, are set for one gigantic, cosmic crossover.
But have they overdone it for Avengers Infinity War? Is it possible with such ambitious stakes?
Avengers: Infinity War is out later this week
The movie could be the biggest box office smash of 2018
Even directors Joe and Anthony Russo, who previously helmed Captain America: The Winter Solider and its sequel Civil War, have admitted to struggling with not one, but six MacGuffins.
Carefully planned from the very beginning of the franchise, the Infinity Stones of immense power have been popping up and changing hands for the last few years.
And now Josh Brolin’s Thanos, a villain first teased during the credits of 2012’s Avengers Assemble, wants to gather all of the sacred objects to “rebalance the universe” – i.e. murder half of all life everywhere.
Not only all this, but the two and a half hour Marvel epic takes place not just across a number of continents on Earth, but in Outer Space as well.
So the question is: have Marvel managed to pull off the impossible?
Put simply, Avengers: Infinity War is everything you want from a Hollywood blockbuster and more. Cataclysmic action, high stakes, the right balance of humour and darkness, believable CGI, and an epic amount of well-developed characters crossing over not just the Earth, but the cosmos.
This is pure entertainment on a scale never before seen in cinema. So what on Earth can be said without spoiling the plot?
Hats completely off to directors the Russo Brothers who have once again topped their last movie, Captain America: Civil War, and pulled off what some many have seen as impossible.
Now nineteen movies into the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Avengers Infinity War is without doubt the best film in the franchise. A monumental celebration of the last 10 years of movies that really does live up to all the hype.
Chris Evans is back as Captain America
Robert Downey Jr plays Iron Man again
From the get-go you’re thrown right in with no time to waste and not a second is – the two and half hours fly by. Not just because you’re having fun but also due to being completely taken in, on the edge of your seat, in one all-encompassing, enthralling spectacle.
So what of the film’s star, the villain himself, Josh Brolin’s Thanos? After all he’s only had three brief scenes since Avengers Assemble’s mid-credits peek all the way back in 2012.
Brutal, violent but with an emotional side and ugly logic to his scheme, the mad Titan is one epic villain. He brings a dark edge that pushes the boundaries of what Disney normally allows in its movies. And as promised, Brolin’s motion-capture performance is beautifully rendered into a believable on-screen being.
And with his quest for the six Infinity Stones and umpteen superheroes trying to stop him, there’s a lot of jumping back and forth between mini-quests and crossovers not dissimilar to Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, but it’s all masterfully edited for just the right level of suspense.
There’s a HUGE all-star cast this time around
As for what to expect – well, prepare to laugh just as much as you’ll gasp in shock at surprises. Oh and maybe bring some tissues. As teased by Iron Man star Robert Downey Jr, ‘It’s Armageddon. Heads will roll.’
Marvel fans need to prepare themselves for a satisfying geek out, while the causal movie fan can just sit back and enjoy the ride.
A year is a long time to wait to find out how it all ends in the mysterious, yes still mysterious, Avengers 4, but this is one film that deserves multiple rewatches.
Avengers Infinity War will be released in the UK on Thursday, while Avengers 4 will follow on April 26, 2018.