Menagerie Menagerie Feature

Rant and Rave—Avengers: Endgame

Avengers: Endgame is the culmination of over a decade worth of films brought to us by the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Spearheaded by Anthony and Joe Russo, the film follows the somber conclusion of 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War, with the film being the epic finish to the 22 film story woven by a plethora of creative minds.

The film represents the endless possibilities that superhero stories have and provides an ending worthy of the iconic storytelling and heroes. Avengers: Endgame is a labor of love from a team passionate about the characters and stories. The film boasts impeccable pacing, relentless suspense, and a breathtaking amount of spectacle. It is no hyperbole to suggest that Endgame is the perfect ending, worthy to go down in history as one of the truly great superhero films.

A grateful universe

Movies with three hour runtimes are seldom seen in the film industry—with the Lord of The Rings and its extended universe coming to mind—as stories are usually able to start and arrive at satisfying conclusions in about an hour and a half. Despite having so much story packed into a three hour runtime, thanks to the masterful directing by the Russo Brothers, the story is easy to follow.

Time and time again, the Russo Brothers have been handed the responsibility of satisfying stratospherical expectations—and as they have done thrice before, satisfy they did. Suspense, action, seriousness, and comedy were the paint on the Russos’ palette; they used each human emotion to weave a tapestry of perfection.

A group of remarkable people

Endgame is an emotional rollercoaster that does not stop as soon as it gets going. This film perhaps has some of the most powerful scenes and imagery ever presented in a superhero blockbuster. To some extent, the film functions as a character study for the original six Avengers. The people behind the film show why these characters are the heart of the MCU by delving into who they are and into the reasons why they fight in a way that honors these paragons of justice.

Tom Breihan of the AV Writers Club said in 2015 about Avengers: Age of Ultron, “There’s a sort of logic to action movies: You tolerate the scenes of dialogue and exposition to get to the fights. The movies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have inverted that whole dynamic. The action scenes are grand and elaborate and impressive, but they’re not what gets anyone in the door. Instead, the bits of Marvel movies that people love, the bits that keep them coming back, are the scenes in between the action. They’re the throwaway jokes, the deep breaths, the moments of quiet bonding.” This idea rings much more true in Endgame. The best superhero movies are those that have relatable human characters; despite some of these heroes being gods and super soldiers, they feel as real as a best friend or a family member. Our heroes are insecure, vulnerable, scared, powerless, and alienated. It is these flaws, and their subsequent attempts to overcome said flaws, that drive us to love these characters deeper than ever.

The end of a journey

At the heart of Endgame’s success is the catharsis it brings. The paths our heroes have been on are each woven into satisfying conclusions that honor and respect what each of them stand for—add to that the brilliant performance from the cast playing the aforementioned original six. The film truly solidifies each of them as icons, as this group of remarkable people come together for what may be the last time, to remind and at the same time give audiences reasons to fall in love with them all over again.

The film is crafted with what can only be described as a deep, undying love for the stories and what the characters undergo. In some ways, it is an act of gratitude from the creators to fans that have been there for the characters through thick and thin. It rewards investment in the franchise, providing some of the most bombastic comic-book style set pieces and imagery. It holds nothing back, pulling all the stops to bring the most impossible moments to life. It is difficult to truly encapsulate the lengths the film goes in this regard without going into spoilers, but Endgame represents the evolution of the superhero blockbuster.

You can rest now

Avengers: Endgame may not be an objectively perfect film. More likely than not, it won’t get nominated for any Oscars. Awards will snub the film, as they usually do with superhero flicks, maybe awarding it a small nomination for visual effects just to acknowledge its presence. But it’s truly more than just a film. It’s an ending: the final chapter to a 22 chapter comic arc. It’s the ending to the stories of people audiences have come to love and adore. It’s the promise of staying true to the characters people fell in love with. And for all the things it is meant to be, it is nothing short of epic.

The MCU is quite the achievement. Anyone who has even had a hand in its development and creation has to be exceedingly proud of themselves. The greatness of what these people have achieved is compounded by Avengers: Endgame. As of now, the future of the franchise is uncertain, and where they go from here is unclear. But no matter what happens from here on out, fans will always have this to come back to. This is something truly special.

Rating: 4.0/4.0

William Ong

By William Ong

Westin Perez

By Westin Perez

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