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“Avengers: Endgame” brings epic ending to an era

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“Avengers: Endgame” brings epic ending to an era

Luis Pagan-Gonzalez

Luis Pagan-Gonzalez

Luis Pagan-Gonzalez

Luis Pagán-González, Staff Writer

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**DISCLAIMER: The following article contains spoilers for the recently released film Avengers: Endgame. If you have not watched the film, and do not want to be spoiled, then do not continue reading! You have been warned!

 

After eleven years of films, world-building, and set-ups, the end of an era has finally arrived. As of April 25th, Marvel Studios’s Avengers: Endgame brings the epic conclusion to the first era of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The new production picks up immediately after the ending of Avengers: Infinity War, which ended with the villain, Thanos (played by Josh Brolin), using the power of the six Infinity Stones to wipe out fifty percent of all existing life in the universe, including many characters we’ve grown to know and love. Now, in Endgame, the remaining Avengers must find a way to bring back the trillions of lives lost after Thanos’s victory.

One of the best things that the movies of Marvel Studios have are the characters and their personalities. Each character has been given plenty of time to grow and develop in previous films and that characterization continues in Endgame as the cast deals with the aftermath of the Decimation, the official name for Thanos wiping out half of all living creatures. After the first scene, which takes place merely twenty three days after the end of Infinity War, Endgame skips ahead to five years, showing how much Earth has changed since then. Governments, or whatever is left of them, are continuously trying to rebuild themselves while people are trying to continue living their lives after dealing with losing loved ones. Captain America, also known as Steve Rogers, (played by Chris Evans) is even helping some of these people move on by organizing a counseling group where he and several normal people affected by the Decimation talk about how much their lives have changed. As the film continues, each character is shown plenty of growth as the story progresses, changing as each scenario plays out.

Now the thing that Marvel movies have excelled at has been the action. Ever fight scene keeps you on the edge of your seat with intense battles that are clear to see and appreciate. Each fight is able to match the tone of the rest of the scene perfectly; whether emotional and heart-wrenching with Hawkeye and Black Widow (played by Jeremy Renner and Scarlett Johansson respectively) fighting over which one would sacrifice themself in order to obtain the Soul Stone to the adrenaline rush of almost the entirety of the third act where Thanos attacks the Avengers Headquarters right after they successfully undo the Decimation and, as the rest of the Avengers try to escape the crumbling building, Captain America, Thor (played by Chris Hemsworth), and Iron Man (played by Robert Downey Jr.) take on Thanos. The scene gets better when Captain America is able to wield Mjolnir, Thor’s magic hammer that only someone “worthy” can use, and then even better when everyone who had been killed from Infinity War’s ending, from Falcon (played by Anthony Mackie) to Black Panther (played by Chadwick Boseman) to Spiderman (played by Tom Holland), join our heroes in one epic all out battle against Thanos and his army is a scene so spectacular that any Marvel fan would at least tear up from the epicness.

Another notable thing positive that Marvel movies have done, especially recently, is representation. We’ve had previous films such as Black Panther and Captain Marvel bring in both African-American and female representation into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Endgame continues this with giving some representations here and there even amidst the chaotic post-apocalyptic world. From introducing the first openly gay character (played by co-director Joe Russo) in the MCU to having an entire scene where every female character, from Captain Marvel (played by Brie Larson) to the Wasp (played by Evangeline Lilly) to Shuri (played by Letitia Wright) to Valkyrie (played by Tessa Thompson), teaming up to give out a full on assault on Thanos directly during the final battle. None of it feels forced or distracting from the importance of the scene in question and is able to continue showing more diversity in not just the MCU, but in modern films as a whole.

Now, as epic and amazing as this film is, it is not perfect. It is almost there, but not quite. The MCU movies have had quite an issue when it comes to forced humor in their films. Now, as films like Thor: Ragnarok have shown, humor can be amazing as long as it is timed well and other recent Marvel films have been able to work with that, Endgame included. However, there is a particular scene where several kids ask to take a picture with the Hulk (played by Mark Ruffalo). After they get their picture, Ant-Man (played by Paul Rudd) asks if they want a picture with him. Even though the kids politely refuse and Ant-Man is okay with it, Hulk insists on them taking a picture with Ant-Man, causing the two men to argue for an unnecessarily long time. While starting out funny, this exchange soon becomes slightly uncomfortable to watch. Thankfully, it does not go on for much longer.

One disappointment was the lack of screen time for Captain Marvel. Carol Danvers was teased at the post credit scene of Infinity War when Nick Fury (played by Samuel L. Jackson) uses an advanced pager to call Danvers wherever she is in the galaxy. The film Captain Marvel then explains that this pager is meant for “emergencies only.” Now, half of the known universe wiping out is obviously an emergency, but the main contributions that Captain Marvel brings in Endgame are only bringing Tony Stark and Nebula (played by Karen Gillan) back to Earth after being stranded on another planet following Infinity War to coming back at the climax to fight alongside the rest of the Avengers. During the time that the rest of the cast is out traveling through time in order to obtain the Infinity Stones to reverse the Decimation, Captain Marvel is out in space doing who-knows-what. Why build up hype for this character who we knows is powerful thanks to what she’s done in her own movie, to not even use her throughout most of the film. Is she too overpowered?

Now this next point, while not a full on negative, just something that is very confusing. Avengers: Endgame concludes with Thanos and his entire army being destroyed by Iron Man, who uses the Infinity Stones to decimate them all, sacrificing himself. It is an emotional and heart breaking moment as Iron Man is the one who started the MCU all the way back in 2008 and now it must continue without him. Following this epic and emotional conclusion, Captain America goes back through time in order to put the Infinity Stones back into the specific places in time where they belong in order to not manipulate or alter the timeline. Cap leaves and instead of coming back five seconds later, he soon appears on a nearby bench as… an old man?! Cap explains to Falcon and Bucky Barnes (played by Sebastian Stan) that after he returned the Infinity Stones back to their respective time periods, he decided to stay in the past and continuing living with Peggy Carter, his former lover interest in his first film, and have the life that was taken away from him when he was trapped in the Arctic for seventy years during World War II. Nothing wrong with that, right? Except how is Cap in the present as an old man even though he changed the past? As was previously stated in the film, time travel and manipulating the past does not affect the present, making Back to the Future impossible to happen. Instead, another branched timeline exists that was affected by the historical alteration alongside the original one. Since this is the case for time travel, how is Cap back in the first timeline when him staying created a brand new one. Not only that, but Cap gives Falcon his iconic shield even Thanos had broken it into pieces in the final battle. The most likely explanation is that Cap and his shield came from the alternate timeline that he created, but this is never really explained. Although an in depth explanation would have taken away the impact of the scene, we cannot help but feel confused as to how “Old Man Cap” came back to giving Falcon his shield. Maybe a future story of the MCU will explain what happened to Cap and how he got back.

Even though there are two noticeable cons and one head scratching scene, Avengers: Endgame is a phenomenal film and does the eleven years of build up justice. Now, as Phase III comes to a close with this film and the upcoming Spider-Man: Far From Home, scheduled to release July 3rd, we cannot help but wonder what Phase IV has in store for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Whatever it is, you can count on fans filling up the theaters for every release.

Avengers: Endgame

Final Rating: 95%

Pros:

  • Amazing character development
  • Engaging story that anyone can understand with enough thought
  • Stunning action and fight scenes
  • Great humor (for the most part)
  • Great representation from minority groups

Cons:

  • One scene of forced humor
  • Lack of use of Captain Marvel
  • Confusing final scene
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“Avengers: Endgame” brings epic ending to an era