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Glorious, Breathtaking, ‘Finale’

Avengers Infinity War

“There was an idea. To bring together a group of remarkable people.To see if we could become … something more. So when they needed us … we could fight the battles … that they never could.”the mantra of the Avengers who—after being lost, cast aside and broken from within—now face the greatest adversary the Universe has ever known in the murderous Thanos (Josh Brolin) who is on a relentless hunt for six “Infinity Stones” which are scattered throughout the galaxy.

For you see, whoever holds all six Infinity Stones has the power of … and is … God. Or so says the Marvell comic book lore dating back some 40 years and has now been weaved together into one massive movie—“Avengers: Infinity War.”

Dear Reader, if you have been sleeping in a cave for the past decade and know NOTHING about the Avengers (Captain America, Black Widow,

Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, Vision, Thor and the Hulk), there is no way I can bring you up to speed except to say that every single super hero that has appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe during the last decade is now in this one singular film—a journey that started from the original “Iron Man” in 2008 to “Black Panther” in 2018.

Thanos is hot on the trail for the Soul, Space,

Reality, Power, Time and Mind Stones and no one will stop him from getting what he wants. Once Thanos gets all six Infinity Stones, he plans on wiping out half of this known universe with a snap of his finger.

This image released by Marvel Studios shows, from left, Benedict Cumberbatch, Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo and Benedict Wong in a scene from “Avengers: Infinity War.” (Marvel Studios via AP)

Ominous indeed and “Avengers: Infinity War” is a film that no other Hollywood studio has dared attempt to make—one glorious, slow building, interwoven story encompassing 18 movies in tota—some part of this overarching tale and others … not so much.

But the underlining premise has been: Thanos is coming.

And now he is here.

One of the rubs against each of these Marvel Studios movies has been the lack of depth and “villainy” of its bad guys.

For the most part they are “one and done.”

Just look at The Red Skull, Whiplash, The Abomination, Ronan, Helmet Zemo or The Mandarin. Each of these villains glared at the camera, had lengthy monologues and that was it. Not one of the Avengers have ever been injured—not even a fingernail broken.

At the end, the good guys ALWAYS win the day.

“Avengers: Infinity War” changes all of that.

Let’s set the scene at this film’s start.

Iron Man/Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) leads what is left of the Avengers after the all-boys band broke up in the aftermath of “Captain America: Civil War” which saw the Avengers torn apart from within. Stark’s Iron Man is alone; The Vision (Paul Bethany)—the synthiozoid created in the second Avengers film (“Avengers: Age of Ultron”)—is now emotionally bonded to the Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and the two would-be lovers have run way to Edinburgh, Scotland to discover themselves, and Captain America/Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) has not only given his shield back to Stark but taken up the moniker of “Nomad” and along with the Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and the Falcon (Anthony Mackie) are the “Secret Avengers” running free around the globe, taking on all would-be villains and world beaters.

This image released by Marvel Studios shows Chris Hemsworth as Thor. with characters Rocket, voiced by Bradley Cooper, seated center, and Groot, voiced by Vin Diesel, in a scene from “Avengers: Infinity War.” (Marvel Studios via AP)

Directors Anthony and Joe Russo do a masterful job from a script by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely as Infinity War begins where “Thor:
Ragnarok” ended and in this film’s first five, terrifying minutes, Thanos and his four-member “Black Order” of alien hit men, kill pretty much every Asgardian on Thor’s ship.

Loki (Tom Hiddleston) who commanded Thanos’ army in the first Avengers film in 2012, had been originally tasked by Thanos to rule the Earth and eventually bring him all six Infinity Stones. Failing at that,

Loki—to save his own skin—now presents Thanos with the Tesseract (or Cosmic Cube if you follow the Marvel comic books), that he purloined from Odin’s vault, giving this madman his first Infinity Stone (Space).

Thor, seeing his people murdered in front of him, is easily defeated and unceremoniously chucked out of his space ship and drifts alone in void, falling into a catatonic, coma-like state.

Enter the Guardians of the Galaxy who actually run into Thor, take him inside their ship and revive him … only to be told of Thanos’ villainy.

There are three ongoing themes in “Infinity War” that eventually collide: Thor is helped by the Guardians of the Galaxy to forge a new magical superweapon to take the place of his now destroyed magic hammer; Captain America, Black Widow and Falcon show up in Scotland—just in time to stop two of the Black Order henchmen from trying to take the Mind Stone from the Vision’s skull, and Iron Man, the Hulk/Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Spider-Man (Tom Holland)—along with a few of the Guardians—find themselves transported to Titan, one of the moons of Saturn, where we are presented some of Thanos’ backstory as they confront the big purple bad guy on his former homeworld.

This film critic has made it a point over the past five years to never give away the ending of any movie but I can barely contain myself from jumping up and down after seeing “Infinity War,” unable to stop pressing the keys on this laptop, so herein I shall break my own rule and give away some spoilers.

Now …

If you DO NOT want to know what happens … DO NOT READ THIS!

Ready?

Well, it goes very bad for the Avengers.

While on Titan, Iron Man has his armored suit ripped off of him and Dr. Strange, without a little fuss and bother, hands his Eye of Agamotto (Time Stone) over to Thanos to save Tony Stark’s life.

The final reel of “Avengers: Infinity War” concludes back on Earth with a massive, climactic battle on the plains of Wakanda. Captain America and his superhero assemblage have brought the Vision with them to the city/state of the Black Panther. Thinking they are “safe” there, they all suit up and await what is coming as Thanos’ entire alien army attacks and it’s up to the combined forces of the Wakandan army and Avengers to hold Thanos back from yanking the Mind Stone from the Vision’s head.

It doesn’t go so well … the script for this one singular battle is 25 pages long or 25 minutes shown on the silver screen alone.

Wow!

Many heroes are killed in this film and they do NOT come back. There is no time travel element that will help them and when they bite the dust, it is worm food time.

I will say that there is an interesting story arc I was following concerning the Hulk/Bruce Banner and the duality of the two.

At any event, Thanos DOES get his grimy little hands on all six Infinity Stones and the Universe comes undone in the worst way. Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Bruce Banner and a few others “survive” but not in a way you would expect.

This amazing 18-film/36-hour Marvel Cinematic Universe comic book brew is truly the conclusion to the current MCU as we know it.

The Avengers try but fail against Thanos and end up … well, think of water going around and around a sink before being sucked down the drain.

So much for that.

Well, maybe not a total defeat as there will be a (yet untitled) Avengers 4 which will bring in new heroes/heroines including Captain Marvel (Brie
Larson) and the final FINAL chapter in this tale will be told as Thanos, having wiped out “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes” sits back and watches the sun set.
True.

After 10 years, most film-goers should be satisfied with the ending of “Avengers: Infinity War.”

That is … until next year.

Avengers assemble!

Questions, comments or travel suggestions, write me at [email protected]

TAGS: avengers, Infinity, war
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