Author Topic: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)  (Read 265 times)

Offline fizz

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Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« on: April 24, 2019, 09:21:PM »

Whatever you may expect of and from Avengers Endgame, know that it is essentially disappointment-proof and immune from critical damage. The Russo brothers and their entire team, including the dedicated cast, have delivered on all their promises. The film, which, without giving anything away, plays out like a greatest hits compilation of the best moments from some of the most memorable movies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, equals or surpasses the surprises, emotional highs and epic, big scale battle spectacles from all previous films including the benchmarks set by last years Infinity War.

Even the opening moments are not what you expect, with a surprising outcome to an unanticipated battle and this sets the film’s tone – you never know just what might happen. Of course, if you remember Infinity War well, the end of that film set up a hook for viewers to return for Endgame and nearly the entirety of this film is spent in preparing us for the inevitable resolution to that out-worldly superhero predicament. This obviously means that there is a smaller team to watch here, but it nicely plays out in terms of both intimacy of plot and character development, of which there is plenty.

Being the culmination of a decade long journey, if the work that the studio had put into the setup wasn’t already admirable, you really start to see how we have been prepared for the many story strands in Endgame – from why the Avengers need the Guardians of the Galaxy, to how slowly, seemingly effortlessly, the saga has shifted from sci-fi to fantasy to all-out space opera. The story, which must be discovered without any prior knowledge of the overall plot, plays out, in its own words, like a heist film. And like any good heist film, in Endgame planning the heist is easier than executing it.

With the kind of semi-complicated ingenuity worthy of a Christopher Nolan film and many years of screenplay master planning, Endgame also completely disregards the fundamental tenets that we’ve come to expect from a particular sub-genre of science fiction (which shall remain unspecified) with all the clever confidence of a comic book itself. The result is a big, bold, brash, beautiful film and one of the worthiest candidates for the title of blockbuster that you’ll ever experience.

Rating: ★★★★½
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2019, 09:37:PM »
So with the politically correct, safe for consumption, spoiler-free rigid reviewing out of the way, lets really talk about this film.

SPOILERS FOLLOW

For the record, I personally think Infinity War was a better film than Endgame. It was ballsy (or ballsier) and despite having so many characters to contend and juggle with, very nicely gave everyone enough screen time, even some of the lesser known characters. It was overall, for me at least, a more fulfilling experience and almost complete in terms of what it was trying to say (Thanos won, Avengers lost, that's it). Endgame is many similar things, but mostly lives and exists on the foundations of many previous films (not just in terms of the flashbacks that become alternate dimensions but even some of the dialogue etc). That isn't a criticism - I understand that that's precisely what the filmmakers set out to do, but all of that made Endgame less of a standalone accomplishment and more a collective success.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2019, 09:58:PM »
About the films resolution and general plotline - Endgame is basically Christopher Nolan's Inception told as a bigger, bolder, superhero film. This first occurred to me when they talk about time slowing down in the Quantum Realm, but the main thrust of their plan involving using this technology to go back in time during very precise moments and "steal" the stones (consequences to timeline be damned) only to be presented with obstacles that get in the way of their plan and throw them out of whack. The only thing missing was a cameo by Leo!
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2019, 10:00:PM »
AGAIN, MAJOR SPOILERS!!!

Oz and I were talking about this at the end - during the Tony Stark funeral scene, all of the faces we recognize collectively from the 22 films were there...except for this one kid I can't remember. He was standing nearly right at the end, in front of General Ross (who invited him by the way). I can't quite figure out who the hell he was....any guesses?
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2019, 10:03:PM »
AGAIN, MAJOR SPOILERS!!!

Oz and I were talking about this at the end - during the Tony Stark funeral scene, all of the faces we recognize collectively from the 22 films were there...except for this one kid I can't remember. He was standing nearly right at the end, in front of General Ross (who invited him by the way). I can't quite figure out who the hell he was....any guesses?

Found it...he's the kid from Iron Man 3 (who I don't fucking remember, that's how forgettable that film was!).

More here.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline shariqq

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2019, 12:59:AM »

Found it...he's the kid from Iron Man 3

What a random appearance! I was wondering too who that was.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2019, 01:08:AM »
I have the same two thoughts that you've posted here, and without discussing it with anyone yet! I guess it'll be a common sentiment then, at least for those that watch movies the way we do.

- I liked Infinity War more too. That's not too say I didn't like Endgame. But this seemed more inevitable and therefore was destined to be more dramatic and less thrilling or risky. The immediate comparisons that came to mind were The Two Towers vs Return of the King, and Deathly Hallows 1 vs Deathly Hallows 2. The penultimate films are more daring and entertaining, while the finales are the dramatic culmination they need to be.
- Nolan and Inception were the blueprints my thoughts went to too! And that is a compliment to this movie, because they pull it off.

I am looking forward to watching it again on Friday, with the anticipation satiated.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2019, 11:48:AM by shariqq »
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2019, 01:12:AM »
Btw, Fizz totally called Prof Hulk! Bravo!

That said, my biggest qualm was Russo's handling of the Hulk. It is quite evident now that they don't think much of the character. And also that nobody loves and depicts the Hulk better than Joss Whedon. They should bring him back to do Hulk movie.

And one more head-scratch: what the fuck did they do to Thor?! Why! 😥
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2019, 11:34:AM »
Captain America wielding Mjölnir was *the* moment of this movie, like Thor's entry in Wakanda in the previous one. The cheers that scene got in the cinema!

Hawkeye's one-on-one with the Japanese gangster and the way Cap wields the hammer were both worthy of the standard that the Russos have set for fight scenes in their movie.

p.s.: Cap vs Bucky in Winter Soldier is still by far my favourite fight scene in the MCU.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline ozzylogic

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2019, 10:41:PM »
AGAIN, MAJOR SPOILERS!!!

Oz and I were talking about this at the end - during the Tony Stark funeral scene, all of the faces we recognize collectively from the 22 films were there...except for this one kid I can't remember. He was standing nearly right at the end, in front of General Ross (who invited him by the way). I can't quite figure out who the hell he was....any guesses?

Found it...he's the kid from Iron Man 3 (who I don't fucking remember, that's how forgettable that film was!).

More here.

Oh, that annoying little shit.
"I hate to disappoint you, but rubber lips are immune to your charms."

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #10 on: April 26, 2019, 12:49:AM »
Btw, Fizz totally called Prof Hulk! Bravo!

Did I ever predict that? Don't remember, but in the comics, and I have mentioned this numerous times before, my favourite incarnation of the Hulk was when he was the erudite, smart, funny version of himself fused with banner - as he says in the movie, the best of both worlds. Probably has something to do with the fact that it was this hulk (and the not the mad incoherent beast) that I was introduced to when I first started reading the comics.

That said, my biggest qualm was Russo's handling of the Hulk. It is quite evident now that they don't think much of the character. And also that nobody loves and depicts the Hulk better than Joss Whedon. They should bring him back to do Hulk movie.

Yes! It's ironic, but the more human he became in the movies, the less interesting he was to watch...

And one more head-scratch: what the fuck did they do to Thor?! Why! 😥

It sort of annoyed me at first but I grew to enjoy it eventually.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #11 on: April 27, 2019, 12:11:AM »
A few more things on further reflection (and I am yet to see it a second time, so these might be answered when that happens or become even bigger talking points).

With the time jump forward to 5 years (assuming its 2023), how does the next film in the MCU series (purportedly, the last film in Phase 3), Siderman: Far From Home, play out? Is it set 5 years in the future? Looking at the trailers this seems to not be so obvious but who knows...

Also, Loki just escapes in the past when the Avengers originally caught him, which is different than what happened in the original film. Of course, Loki has escaped many times, he has a tendency for doing this, but the fact that he was killed BEFORE Thanos snapped his fingers at the end of Infinity War meant that there was no way he was coming back in the existing universe. However now that he has escaped in an alternate dimension, perhaps this might change (I really like his character and want him to make an appearance!).
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline shariqq

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2019, 12:54:PM »
Btw, Fizz totally called Prof Hulk! Bravo!

Did I ever predict that? Don't remember, but in the comics, and I have mentioned this numerous times before, my favourite incarnation of the Hulk was when he was the erudite, smart, funny version of himself fused with banner - as he says in the movie, the best of both worlds. Probably has something to do with the fact that it was this hulk (and the not the mad incoherent beast) that I was introduced to when I first started reading the comics.

Yup you did. Here it is:

The whole Banner trying to control Hulk leads to complications in the comics with the eventual result being them being merged into one i.e. a Hulk who talks like Banner - brainy and strong. To me, this is the version of the Hulk I grew up on and frankly resulted in some of his finest storylines. I also feel that the Hulk has gotten more expressively progressively in the film. Him and Thor were literally having childlike conversations in Ragnorak. Perhaps MCU is working its way towards this story thread?

I hadn't known of this incarnation of the Hulk until you mentioned it here.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #13 on: April 27, 2019, 01:14:PM »
A few more things on further reflection (and I am yet to see it a second time, so these might be answered when that happens or become even bigger talking points).

With the time jump forward to 5 years (assuming its 2023), how does the next film in the MCU series (purportedly, the last film in Phase 3), Siderman: Far From Home, play out? Is it set 5 years in the future? Looking at the trailers this seems to not be so obvious but who knows...

Also, Loki just escapes in the past when the Avengers originally caught him, which is different than what happened in the original film. Of course, Loki has escaped many times, he has a tendency for doing this, but the fact that he was killed BEFORE Thanos snapped his fingers at the end of Infinity War meant that there was no way he was coming back in the existing universe. However now that he has escaped in an alternate dimension, perhaps this might change (I really like his character and want him to make an appearance!).

The time-travel thing isn't particularly well thought out, explained or closed.
- We are explicitly told that they have Pym Particles only for one round trip per person. This is a part of the plot point too when Cap and Iron Man have to travel further back to get the Space Stone from an Army base. Yet... How do Thanos' ship and evil Nebula time-travel back to the present in two separate journeys? Evil Nebula gives the Pym particles to Thanos. So she has the space-time GPS but no Pym particles to come back. Thanos has the Pym particles but no Space-Tume GPS (and how do you put it on a whole ship anyway? But let's ignore that).
- Past Gomorra is now in the present. So that the GotG franchise can continue. But now that the post-finale Avengers have unlimited Pym particles and a Time Machine (that's how the Cap finally travels, right?), then why not just go into any past and bring back Widow and Vision and a Tony Stark too? 🤷‍♂
- Did all of Spidey's school friends and his aunt get snapped? If not, there'll be a 5-year gap between them, and some of those kids would've graduated school.

The movie does a pretty good job of the "Best of hits" that Fizz mentions. But I don't think it stands up to scrutiny. It's massively fun and quite the emotional ride. But once the euphoria around it dies down, it won't have the kind of longevity that Avengers 1 or Infinity War has.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline fizz

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Re: Avengers: Endgame (Russo Brothers, 2019)
« Reply #14 on: April 27, 2019, 10:28:PM »
Btw, Fizz totally called Prof Hulk! Bravo!

Did I ever predict that? Don't remember, but in the comics, and I have mentioned this numerous times before, my favourite incarnation of the Hulk was when he was the erudite, smart, funny version of himself fused with banner - as he says in the movie, the best of both worlds. Probably has something to do with the fact that it was this hulk (and the not the mad incoherent beast) that I was introduced to when I first started reading the comics.

Yup you did. Here it is:

The whole Banner trying to control Hulk leads to complications in the comics with the eventual result being them being merged into one i.e. a Hulk who talks like Banner - brainy and strong. To me, this is the version of the Hulk I grew up on and frankly resulted in some of his finest storylines. I also feel that the Hulk has gotten more expressively progressively in the film. Him and Thor were literally having childlike conversations in Ragnorak. Perhaps MCU is working its way towards this story thread?

I hadn't known of this incarnation of the Hulk until you mentioned it here.

Wow, I am actually kinda feeling proud of myself here *blushes*.

All those years of comic reading weren't a total waste.

Again, a reminder to self, this is why forums are AWESOME!!!
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.