This three-hour, super-hero team-up concludes more than a decade of 22 intertwined Marvel movies featuring Iron Man, Captain America, The Hulk and Thor, among others.
It begins right after the “Infinity War” conclusion in which evil Thanos (Josh Brolin), who possesses the Infinity Stones, snaps his fingers and vaporizes half the world’s population, including Spider-Man, Black Panther, Doctor Strange and Star-Lord.
The remaining Avengers include Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans), War Machine (Don Cheadle), Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) and Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.). They’re all suffering survivor’s guilt.
“We should have covered Earth with a shield, but you were too worried about infringing on personal freedom,” Stark says to Cap. “We’re always fighting after the fact. We’re the Avengers, not the Pre-vengers, right?”
After soul-searching grief and the blame-game, abetted by Thanos’ daughter Nebula (Karen Gillian), Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) surface, as the cathartic action begins in earnest. Discovering who survives and who doesn’t is part of the fun – and I won’t ruin that for you.
Screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely weave an enthralling time-travel heist, brought to life by directors Joe & Anthony Russo, who deftly juggle the complex storylines and surprise cameos, aided by cinematographer Trent Opaloch and Alan Silvestri’s score.
So what will happen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe? There’s Spider-Man: Far From Home later this year and Guardians of the Galaxy 3 in 2022. Plus sequels to Black Panther, Doctor Strange and Captain Marvel.
And pivotal changes will commence with the Disney+ streaming service. Marvel is developing TV series featuring established characters like Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Vision (Paul Bettany), Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), and Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen).
On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, Avengers: Endgame is a nostalgic 9. It’s a long goodbye – with no sly post-credit teasers.