11 years ago, Iron Man was released. Back then, no one could have possibly predicted that such a simple superhero movie would kickstart what is now one of the most lucrative movie franchises in history. Endgame is the conclusion of this massive 11-year arc. Every single second in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has been leading up to the release of the fifth Avengers film.
Endgame begins immediately after the end of Infinity War, the previous Avengers flick. With half of the population wiped into dust, those who survived Thanos’ actions must regroup and find a way to bring the fallen back into life.
On the surface (and without spoilers), that is the plot of Endgame. Running at a lengthy three hours, Endgame almost manages to not bore its audience. The movie can be well divided into three different acts, following a regular movie structure. The first act and the final act were extremely satisfying and intense, having my full attention all through it. The middle section of the film, however, fails to do the same.
Filled with repetitive jokes and beat up gags, the second act of the movie is a mess of information and obvious plot holes. That’s when the movie’s run time starts to weigh down on the audience. The repetition in this section of the film was not only boring, but it also drained practically all my attention. There’s so much “techno-mumble” in the film’s second act, that it surprises me that the Russo brothers allowed it to get into the movie. Moments of heart and character development, like in almost all MCU movies, are generally cut-off by forced jokes, always breaking the seriousness of the moment.
Aside from the crater-sized plot holes of the story, the movie, overall, was very well executed. As previously mentioned, the first and final acts of the film are superb. The beginning manages to establish the half-empty world with dexterity; streets are dirty, weeds are dominating the suburbs, and almost no life is seen. The characters who were happened to survive are almost all part of the original cast of the 2012 Avengers. It was well thought to keep them alive, not only they’re the audience is most familiar with, but they also give the movie a sense of conclusion, tying it back to the original Avengers.
The final act of the film is likely the greatest fan-service any movie has ever done. With moments referencing earlier films, such as Age of Ultron and Iron Man, and appearances from characters not many even remember, the final act is the ultimate fan-journey through all the 11 years of the MCU. Even some long-awaited phrases were finally delivered by dear characters. Endgame’s final act is the reason why this movie deserves the record-smashing box office; it’s a conclusion of a long-lasting saga, a moment millions of people have been eager to see for so long.
Even though Endgame has a poor and weak middle, the film still manages to satisfy the long-awaited hype. Its opening and final acts are enough to make fans ignore the dull sections of the three-hour film. Though the middle is unsatisfying, it is still a movie worth watching for its well-executed fan-service, unique moments and certainly for its historical relevance. No other cinematic universe will ever be like the MCU. No other generation will grow up watching Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hulk and Hawkeye in the big screen and being inspired by their heroic actions. Endgame marks the end of an MCU era and the beginning of a new cinematic universe.