We waited 3 years for this since Age of Ultron left us wanting more. Actually, 10 years! Since Iron Man #1 and being teased with The Avengers Initiative. Because truly, it was all leading to this. Having all these heroes, so different in personality, together in one movie. Really, there are very few movies featuring such a number of important characters all at once (LOTR comes to mind!). So we can all pretty much agree this is incredibly ambitious...even for a movie that's 2 1/2 hours long. The good news? It never once feels that long!
From the very second the movie begins, the directors (Russo brothers) immediately make us understand that this will be no joke. Play time is over y'all, and its time to get serious. It's not Hela or Killmonger trying to take the throne and bent on revenge with a surprising lack of henchmen. This is Thanos. He is ruthless, more determined perhaps than any villain we've seen so far, and so are his men. This gets very serious very fast and you'll immediately sink in your seat wondering what you've just signed up for. Then again, the title never promised child's play.
But it's Marvel after all so in spite the serious, you'll find yourself laughing silly, maybe even clutching your stomach from laughing so hard, in those very precious instances meticulously sprinkled throughout the movie, lightening the mood. In this regard, the Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor do not disappoint. It was great hearing some heroes' familiar soundtrack when they showed up on screen for the first time, reminding everyone just how much they are loved and were missed. Some of the look changes and costume upgrades will make fans happy.
The Russo brothers somehow manage to put these heroes in very fitting pairs and groups, sending them on different compelling missions across the universe. And although there is quite a lot of hopping from scene to scene and planet to planet, it's easy to remain fully immersed in the story. It's not complicated and it's easy to follow. However, by the time we get to some important fight/action scenes, the scene hopping does start to take its toll and becomes a little overwhelming.
Perhaps one of the biggest issues the challenge of having so many personalities cramped into one film poses is the fact that at best, most of them only get a few lines. Their individual personalities are nowhere close to being explored. Except for a few, like Doctor Strange (who plays a big role in this movie), Tony Stark, Star-Lord and crew, Scarlet Witch and Thor. The others, unfortunately, end up appearing pretty two dimensional. A lot of their personal issues (even amongst themselves) are unexplored. This is understandable with such an ambitious project. But it does have its consequences.
Overall, it's fun but also devastating and definitely more heartbreaking than anything Marvel has ever served. That in itself might be an invitation to mixed reviews. Who knows? But one thing is for sure, you'll find yourself at the edge of your seat. On my part, I gasped "Noooooo!" quite a number of times hoping it was all a dream. Maybe one of Tony Stark's nightmares? Too much to hope? Lol. But by the time the credits started rolling, the theatre room fell into this heavy silence as if everyone was afraid to breathe. Undoubtedly, wheels were turning in every head. It's hard for me to decide how I feel about the movie's "conclusion". It's hard to truly "feel" something or have an opinion about the ending until we have more of an idea about Avengers 4. While it might all seem like one big tragedy, somehow, it leaves us still holding on to hope.
Would I recommend? Yes! It's definitely worth a watch. If anything, at least for the laughs.
What you need to know before watching: Definitely watch every Marvel movie featuring an infinity stone before watching this. Or watch every Marvel movie, period. Otherwise, Iron man 1, Captain America 1, 2, 3. Thor 1, 2, 3. Avengers 1 and 2. Guardians 1.