Warning, this review contains spoilers.
Is it good? Beyond good! How good? I'll tell you how
- If you don't have your tickets yet, stop what you're doing and get your tickets now! If you can, buy from a theater that has reserved seating so you can customize/optimize your experience!
- If your kids cannot sit through a 3 hour movie, hire a babysitter! It is worth it, trust me.
- Time your meals before the movie! I'm all for keeping hydrated and keeping your sugar levels right but you don't want to miss any second of this movie because of a bathroom break. I'm serious! Or wear a diaper. Your choice.
- I also recommend getting in the right head space on movie day! Zen out and relax before the movie, wear comfortable clothes, and be sure to include some time to debrief the movie with your fellow Marvel fans after wards because you will not be able to stop talking about it!
- Lastly, be present, be involved during the movie! I loved the 6 ft guy sitting next to me. His vocal and physical reactions gave me strength; big bellows of laughter, sounds of amazement, of impressiveness. "Oh My God!" "Wait, what?!" "Yes! Yes!" and then even some tears shed with sniffles as he unashamedly dried his wet cheeks a couple of times. We both clapped loudly at the end. My hubby gave me the look, you know the "what are you doing?" look but I couldn't help myself. This movie had me on a cathartic roller coaster of emotions that I shared with my arm rest buddy! I really should have stood up and clapped. THIS IS HOW EPIC THIS MOVIE IS.
This movie is a bit different than the others because it shows our Avengers dealing with disappointment and failure for an extended amount of time. They lost Infinity Wars and five years pass. Black Widow suffers from PTSD. She's unfocused, moody, un-assured, indifferent almost because she doesn't know how to make things better. She doesn't know how to be of service because her purpose is gone. Similarly, Cap runs weekly group therapy sessions where he, like a robot, tells members to "move on". On the other end of the spectrum, Hawkeye becomes a mercenary, taking revenge on others for the loss of his family. Thor also completely loses himself, becoming a fat drunkard. The opening scenes are not our Avengers as we are used to seeing them.
The only two who positively get in touch with their inner selves during these five years post-war are Tony and Bruce. Tony becomes a family man and lives a quiet simpler life near a lake with Pepper. Bruce reconciles his two identities into a jolly green gentle giant running a restaurant and taking friendly pictures with fans.
We see how pointedly affected our Avengers are by their emotions as they travel back in time to obtain the stones, carrying out the "Time Heist" plan, as crafted by Antman. Thor gets to see his Mother one more time. The Queen of Asgard asserts her motherly instinct and can feel that Thor is present. She senses that he needs to hear some encouraging words. Not once does she mention his disheveled appearance, his weight, his shabby sweats, his unruly, dirty hair. Instead she tells him to "be who you are supposed to be." She builds him up and re-ignites the God within. That's what mothers are supposed to do.
|Mother and son when he was in shape!|
Since this movie involves time travel, it is inevitable (you'll see why I use this word) that past and present versions of themselves will meet. The movie provides an entertaining Captain America vs Captain America fight scene and an evil Nebula vs good Nebula confrontation. These are demonstrations of how motives, beliefs, and characters can change over time. And in the end, as it should be, good prevails.
Another major part of the appeal of this movie for me is the Girl Power movement! Captain Marvel interacts with the Avengers for the first time and when asked how things will be different this go-around against Thanos, she answers with a confident, "This time you have me." And since the release of "Black Panther", no Avenger fight scene would be complete without the female warriors from Wakanda. The final fight scene where many of our beloved heroines enter the fight (Rescue being one of them, surprise surprise!) had me cheering from the edge of my seat! Captain Marvel flexes her supernatural powers to destroy Thanos' power central and in a later scene, Thor passes on his crown to a female natural born leader, Valkyrie! Kudos to comic writers and to Marvel Studios for showcasing GIRL POWER!
Another prominent relationship highlighted is Tony and Pepper's. Tony has settled into a loving marriage, complete with adorable daughter. While the other previous movies had Pepper begging Tony not to go whenever he entered a fight, this time, when Tony tells her he figured out how to time travel, she knows that there is nothing she can say that will make him stay. The solemn look on her face shows the gratitude for the five years they had together.
And what of our relationship with these characters over the last decade? It is truly fitting that at the final fight scene, some of Tony's last words are "I am Ironman.", a declaration that this journey began with him and this war ends with him. And as he endures his final sacrifice, with Pepper rightly by his side, tears flowed openly from the audience, our heartstrings pulled one last time, as Pepper whispers to him "We're going to be fine. You can rest now." I don't think I could have imagined a better ending.
"Avengers Endgame" opens the weekend of 4/25/19. See your local theaters for showtimes.