Avengers: Infinity War

RATED - (PG-13) - 149-MIN-2018

              Avengers: Infinity War delivers big time on what we were waiting for.

The first two Avengers movies were expertly crafted, well cast and acted films. But for me, there was a calculated, corporate shine to them, that bothered me. Yes, I enjoyed the films, but I never was truly engaged. They were too precise and there was no sense that any of our heroes were in any sort of true peril....even for a bit of time.

Avengers: Infinity War, doesn't follow that same pattern.

Ok, so this is the star-studded lineup that everybody has been waiting for. Just about all of your favorite characters from the Marvel movies in the last ten years or so, have come together in (Avengers: Infinity War), to stop the big bad dude of the universe Thanos (Josh Brolin, who shines through the motion capture ) and his family from getting all of the Infinity Stones. These are those magical McGuffins that they have been going on about in these movies, and once Thanos has them, he some scary plans for the universe.

Is it any good?  Yes, it is.

I saw it in IMAX 3D and the packed movie house cheered, laughed, and sometimes gasped at what was unfolding onscreen. I laughed a lot but didn't shed one tear. There is some heaving shit going on, but if you just think about it for a minute, nothing is permanent in these movies, so fear not. I must say, as a huge fan of the IMAX format, that 3D is a hit or miss sometimes, even on the huge screen. The intense action scenes, with fast sweeping camerawork and sometimes, hundreds of figures moving, has a blurred effect, that at times can be distracting to the experience, but conversely, when it slows down, the depth of field and pure scope can be breathtaking. It is certainly worth seeing in this way because it is a huge spectacle that deserves it. 

Basically, if you go to see this movie, you know the backstory about how our heroes have fractured off into groups: Half as fugitives in hiding, with Captain America (Chris Evans) and the other half doing their own thing. But after Thanos has an intense run-in with Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and Heimdall (Idris Elba),
looking for one of the stones, it's off to another planet, to find the next one, and terrorize anyone who stands in his way. One of those places is earth, where several of the stones are; One planted right int the Vision's noggin.

When Thanos, dispatches a very creepy Ebony Maw (Tom Vaughan) off to Earth, his first encounter with Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), and Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) on the streets of New York is a hoot and action-packed. When Peter Parker/Spiderman (Tom Holland), who is on a school bus, senses danger, he joins the mix and they chase the bad guys into space by hitchhiking onto their ship. (Downey) is great with (Holland) as the impatient mentor to the hyper-anxious newbie.

Meanwhile, in Scotland, Vision (Paul Bettany) and his main squeeze Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen)  are attacked by more of Thanos soldiers. Captain America, Black Widow, and Hawkeye (Anthony Mackie) come to the rescue, and by now, they know something very big is up. Yes, we go back to Wakanda to have a huge battle, and did I mention that Bruce Banner/The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) is having performance issues turning into our big green lug? That's a problem when you're trying to save the Earth.

Are you following all of this?

Its kind of like seeing all your favorite musicians on stage at the same time playing a familiar tune, and each one having a solo. Is it too much? it is a bit, but there is some fabulous banter between these beloved characters, some of who get to meet each other for the first time. I particularly liked when Thor (a very funny Chris Hemsworth) first meets The Guardians of the Galaxy, and how everyone seems to find him quite stunning, except a jealous Starlord (Chris Pratt) who mumbles on about using his Bowflex again. It looks like they had a lot of fun making this giant movie, and it helps the film immensely.  When this team splits up again on their missions, Gamora (Zoe Saldana ) goes off to find her robot sister Nebula (Karen Gillan ) and her big bad father Thanos. They have some stuff to figure out, and (Saldana) once again shows what a wonderful actress she is. These scenes also give depth to Thanos, and he becomes more than the typical one-dimensional bad guy. He may be crazy and power hungry, but he has his reasons.

The Russo brothers, who made (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) and (Captain America: Civil War) have quite the epic juggling act to contend with. There are many characters and subplots that have to come together for the final showdown in this movie. And for the most part, they really pull it off. The action scenes make sense, are easy to follow, and quite exhilarating. In this decade of the endless stream of Marvel films, (Avengers: Infinity War) is a fine part 1 of 2, for the coda of this franchise. Don't let anyone tell you about the plot and go check it out. You won't be disappointed.

You should see this movie.

Watch the trailer: