Welcome to the latest greatest Marvel movie, where all your favorite superheroes come together against the super-villain, Thanos, a very reasonable crazy person who wants to destroy half the universe! They fight super hard for two hours and thirty minutes, and then Thanos destroys half the universe. It's great fun.
|I Loki hate this movie. lol.|
There's a filmmaking 101 rule. If, say, a bomb is introduced to the plot, and there isn't eventually an on-screen explosion, your movie is bad. You must detonate that bomb. That's why Iron Man flew the nuke into space and exploded the Chitari spaceship. That's why Ronan's plans of destruction via the Power stone are shown by The Collector as he explains the danger -- because you must show it. It doesn't have to happen for real, but it has to happen. This rule, which is religiously followed in action films, is the reason I wasn't surprised by the end of Infinity War. The end rolled around sans a preview of the destruction, so I braced for impact.
But that's not why I didn't like the movie. The reason why I didn't enjoy myself watching this film as much as I should have, is that I felt the need to brace for impact in the first place. I like plenty of these characters. In fact, I dislike none of them. But the MCU doesn't typically make it worthwhile to be invested in the plights or well-being of its characters, and this film is the worst offender of the lot. Thor, Gamora and Strange are pushed to develop more than most of the sea of characters this film possesses, but whether they receive a little attention, or a lot, this movie can't agree with previous films on what their established character is, or the directions they should take.
|You'd think so little screen-time would keep away glaring inconsistencies, but no. Poor Quill was obliterated.|
It's an antihero movie from Thanos' perspective more than anything else. He wants to save the entire universe by destroying half the universe, (If you kill half the people, the rest will have more room and resources. Think about it!) and while his reasoning makes sense for a crazy person, he doesn't act crazy. He's just a big purple dude with a dream, and besides his partial-genocide plan, he keeps his evil deeds to a minimum. Are we supposed to sympathize? Because he achieves his goal at great personal loss does that make him deep? No. He's one-note, and it never makes sense why his goal is so important to him.
Conversely, every single hero's goal is clear: save the world, save the universe, save the people they care for. Viewers will latch on to that automatically; it's a fundamental part of a hero's being. Yet we are forced to watch them fail and give way to Thanos' character over and over. And with no ultimate triumph to make it worthwhile, it all becomes meaningless. This story has no reward. It kicks you in the head on intervals, tosses in a few neat fights, then pulls the rug out and waits for the praise to come rolling in. And fans, concussed, stagger away mumbling about how they "need to process this." You don't need to process it: it felt like one big sucker punch because that's what it was.
|Half the "good" moments were just blatant rehashes of previous good moments. Thor's plotline was probably best because he has success before the final failure.|
The film started out feeling very similar to flipping channels -- if every channel was playing a generic Marvel film. But the plot does tie it all together in a cohesive way, and as it puttered along I found myself more and more interested in the outlandish space locations and enjoying the odd awesome moment that lands among the unfunny, downright boring attempts at comedy and the even less interesting character development through dialogue. And every time a character died I would wait patiently for the next hint of joy.
Is it too much to ask that superhero movies be fun? It's not that they don't know how to have fun. I recall one particularly spectacular moment between Bucky and Rocket, and Spider-Man elevates everything by double just by having his face on screen. It seemed that the point of the movie wasn't to be entertaining (or heaven forbid -- interesting!) but to be a culmination of the past ten years. To bring it all together under one roof, and in one fell swoop... point to the next movie: because if the audience isn't talking about the next film in the series as they walk out of the theater, you're doing it wrong.
|It's called The Avengers for a reason! They gotta have something to... to.... *Part Two opens* ...AVENGE!!!!|
I'm sick and tired of it. I just want to enjoy a movie; to live in the moment of a fantasy world for a few hours, without the threat of anything being held back or saved for later. Marvel is on top of the world right now. They can do whatever they want, and fans will be in the theater, excited, and willing to give it a chance. And what do they do with this power? They give us crumbs. They leave a trail of them, promising more and more, and we follow, like the dutiful fans we are, clinging to the crumbs -- a great character, a favorite actor, a fleeting moment of joy -- and wonder why we don't feel satisfied.
There's not a lot objectively wrong with this movie. It's put together impressively well for being the monstrous task that it was. It mostly makes sense, mostly stays focused, and definitely does what it sets out to do. It often looks good, Thanos and his henchmen's CGI being a notable exception. It has a handful of memorable moments and many more that seem included dispassionately, out of obligation. Some humor is okay, some cringy. Some characters get quality attention, some... aren't even in the movie at all. Hello, Hawkeye? There are scores of nitpicks I could make, but it doesn't matter; the hard truth is, there's nothing this movie could've done that would've made me love it.
|I'm not an overly emotional person by nature, but Marvel has taught me to be downright stone-hearted concerning their films.|
Fact is, I don't watch superhero movies to see the heroes fail at the end. On the list of things I don't want to see in a superhero film, ultimate failure is top of the box office all year long. (Failure before the end, however, is equally necessary. It's backwards here.) And I know: I know they're going to fix everything, because Spidey has another movie coming, and Marvel will never kill off a cash cow before it's dry. Therefore, it's possible that in combination with Part 2, I will enjoy the story more. Yep, they have me on the hook for another year. Doesn't change the fact, though. The only enjoyment I got out of the end was being so detached that I was actually amused by the manipulative stupidity on display before me.
There's simply nothing here for me. I am a Marvel fan, but they sure do make it difficult. Forcing investment in a story that is out to manipulate me isn't an option, and I've been shortchanged too many times for it to come naturally. If you don't identify with that statement, you'll probably love this film. Since it banks on killing off characters it's important that you be invested. And good on you if you were invested and did like it -- I'm not here to be Gamora and suck the joy out of everything (I'll even admit her death scene and dynamic with Thanos was alright) I'm just here to complain that I found no joy to begin with.
|Except maybe Spider-Man. Spider-Man is still great. Maybe I'm turning into a Sony-Marvel fan...|
For a movie with no respect, no energy, and minimal creative effort, where the good guys put aside their differences, joining against a common enemy, only to fail miserably and wallow in a stale puddle of passionless tears, all in a blatant effort to build hype for the next film, Infinity War is about as good as you could possibly expect.