Banner: Marvel Studios
Producer: Kevin Fiege
Directors: Anthony and Joe Russo
Cast: Robert Downey Jr, Benedict
Cumberbatch, Scarlett Johansson,
Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Tom
Holland, Zoe Saldana, Chris Pratt, Josh
Brolin, Chris Evans, Elizabeth Olsen
Writers: Christopher Marcus,
Music: Alan Silvestri
With great power comes great responsibility, goes the saying. But, when there is so much superpower in one film, the responsibility is even greater for the makers as well as the writers.
Avengers: Infinity War is about the super villain Thanos, who wants to possess the six ‘infinity stones’ so that he can wipe out certain populations from the universe and become God. The original Avengers and their friends from the MCU come together to protect these stones, which some of them possess. The movie then gets divided into different arcs as the superheroes split up and form unlikely yet entertaining groups in order to save the infinity stones from falling into the hands of Thanos. How they try to fight the giant, purple villain and whether or not they survive the war, forms the crux of this first part.
As we’ve just mentioned, there are various arcs in the film where one sub-plot jumps to another. The director duo of the Russo brothers should be given credit for making sure all the arcs are well-defined and have a mix of the most unlikely but supremely interesting characters.
While the combination of Tony Stark aka Iron Man and Doctor Strange, two self-confessed egomaniacs, is a deadly one on screen, the banter between Thor and Peter Quill from Guardians Of The Galaxy leaves you in splits. Bruce Banner’s struggle with his Hulk avatar and Peter Parker aka Spider-Man’s pop culture references are just a few examples of how there is a humourous element to all the characters. This is expected in a Marvel movie, especially after Thor: Ragnarok.
What is surprising are the well-executed emotional scenes that pop in between the story and enrich the narrative. Also, the subtle way the directors have shown the shocking climax, making it uncharacteristic to all the Marvel superhero movies from before (especially the Avengers series), is on point. The stillness of the scene makes sure your jaw drops as you comprehend what’s unfolding on screen.
To say that the fight scenes in this film are precisely shot would be an understatement. We already know just how well this studio can pull off an extravagant action sequence but this time they have taken it to a new level by showing multiple fights, in multiple settings and making sure that all of them have a different element to it. The fight scene between the four mighty women towards the end is one for the books. The VFX is overwhelming as always and will make you gasp as much as you have in all the earlier Marvel films.
One major criticism is the underutilisation of certain prominent superheroes. The graph of a few main characters is defined well while the others are lost in the chaos. The directors have tried to do justice to all their characters including Groot, Falcon and War Machine but couldn’t get the balance right. Several strong characters like Black Widow, Scarlet Witch and even Black Panther are underused despite a strong potential. There are jumps from outer space to New York to Wakanda all in the span of minutes and while you are able to follow it, some of the thrilling fight scenes become anti-climactic as the focus shifts from one arc to another.
The only person who gets maximum attention in the film is Thanos. It belongs to him more than anyone else. The bad guy gets the most screen time and manages to display a range of emotions, justifying his genocidal future plans along with executing some stunning fight scenes.
The film does follow the same old MCU superhero story of an alien invader wanting to harm civilians on Earth and the Avengers trying to save the planet. But, with the right treatment and mother of all cliff-hanger endings, Joe and Anthony Russo have made sure Avengers: Infinity War manages to pack a solid punch and that people squirm in anticipation till part two of this final, incredible MCU film releases next year.
Performance-wise, Robert Downey Jr as Tony Stark/Iron Man holds the crown as the most entertaining Avenger with his straight-faced hilarious lines. Benedict Cumberbatch is right up there as he delivers a striking performance as Doctor Strange after the movie released in 2016. Chris Evans as Captain America is as formidable as ever. The second Chris, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, maintains the humour he carried on from his solo film last year. And the final one, Chris Pratt delivers a decent performance as Peter Quill/Star Lord.
Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow is not prominent but visible in the team and so is Peter Holland as Spider-Man. Chadwick Boseman is another such example. Josh Brolin as the super villain Thanos is very impressive. The other actors, Elizabeth Olsen, Zoe Saldana, Paul Bettany, etc. hold the film together.