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  1. Published on: 11/08/2019 04:56 PMReported by: Film Critic
    Plot: With the universe now in ruins, it is up to the remaining Avengers to defeat Thanos and restore balance.

    The past decade has belonged to the franchises, and we have come to the end of an era for probably the biggest and most successful franchise of modern times.

    For many people, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has brought joy to not just comic book fans who have waited decades for this. But also people of different cultures and ages since since its first installment in 2008 with Iron Man.

    While I may have never got into the comics, my TV and film history of superhero viewing has been around for pretty much my whole life. My childhood saw me regularly watch the Christopher Reeve Superman films, the Tim Burton and Joel Schmuacher Batman films as well as the Spider-Man, X-Men and Batman animated TV series from the early-mid 90's.

    Then 2000 is when the current era of superhero films began with the X-Men franchise, the first of many attempted Spider-Man franchises and so on. I remember being interested, but not excited by Iron Man as I was only aware of the character and net brought up by him. It surprised me and I really enjoyed it. Then I enjoyed The Incredible Hulk. It took me a while to watch Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger as it wasn't doing enough for me to go and see them. Despite not seeing them going into Avengers Assemble, the film still managed to get me into these characters and love it as much as the people that did watch those two films beforehand.
    After that, I knew I had to see every future MCU film.

    While a lot of people were loving everything they were making, I just thought they were solid fun after Avengers Assemble. Then came some exceptions like the brilliant Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians Of The Galaxy and Captain America: Civil War.
    It wasn't until Spider-Man: Homecoming in the summer of 2017 when I felt Marvel were making hit after hit including Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War and even Ant-Man And The Wasp.

    Eleven years and twenty-one films later, we have come to the conclusion of the vision of Marvel Studios president Kevin Fiege. It's been quite a ride and if it wasn't for this franchise, I honestly think cinema box office numbers would be at an all-time low.

    This obviously follows on from the events of Infinity War, which became not only my new favourite MCU film, but any Marvel film ever made. So to follow that was going to be quite a task for directors Anthony and Joe Russo, as well as concluding many characters story-archs.

    Obviously I'm not going to spoil it, so here we go. It had a pretty ballsy start. So I felt pretty confident that many peoples predictions went out the window early on. Then a further brave move just had my jaw-dropped thinking where are they going with this.
    The first was a surprisingly sombre start, which I fully appreciated and respected the crew for going down this route.
    Then as we got to realise where this film intentions were in concluding this story, my excitement levels just kept going up and up and never stopped. I was loving that no matter how many more layers kept going on top of the story, it maintained course. I noticed that it pretty connected all of the previous MCU films which for me just enhanced the importance of them. That was a cool move. There was definitely one MCU film that I will look in a totally different way despite it being universally seen as one of the weaker ones of the franchise.
    Then the final act was just pure cinematic spectacle and even channeled The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King for the most of that finale.

    That feeling of relief and satisfaction was so strong when coming out of the screening. My biggest worry was how my favourite Avengers character would end up. I obviously won't say who, but emotions were running high by the end and I loved how this particular characters story-arch concluded.

    Now onto the performances, and there are a lot to get through. Robert Downey Jnr. was great as always and despite being the character of Tony Stark for so long, he managed to a lot more emotional range then in previous outings and made him a stand-out in this one.
    Chris Evans continues to show why he was born to play Captain America. That natural leader feel in his acting worked so well once again and certainly made me understand why he had a lack of screen-time in Infinity War.
    Chris Hemsworth gave us a different type of Thor. But the end results were still the same. Lots of laughs and kick-*** psychical acting. But like Downey Jnr. there was a bit more emotional range.
    A few others that upped their dramatic game were Jeremy Renner and Karen Gillan who stole the show at times during this 3hr epic.
    I obviously have to commend Josh Brolin, who does it again and show why his character could well be the best film villain at least in this decade and possibly this century.
    Also have to give props to Paul Rudd and Zoe Saldana whose contribution in this film were particularly notable in several scenes.

    Everything from the technical side was tip-top as always with a Marvel film. They always spare no expense in this department, and this team is the reason why the end credits take pretty much 10 mins to get through. The visual effect makes everything come alive and the final act was glorious in its look. All thanks to the CGI. I felt the editing was noticeable, as with so many things happening in many locations, it was cut at the right times.

    The 3hr run-time went by so quickly and it was just so great seeing mainstream cinemagoers not make a peep and never go to a toilet break. That is pure ecstasy for film fan.

    I am going to have to temporarily bust this bubble of positivity as there was one gripe that I had with the film. It happened towards the very end and I felt this moment felt forced, unrealistic and felt like they to basically stop the film to show something that is currently on topic in society. They did something similar in Infinity War and that was executed much better and felt more realistic and how we got to that point.

    But I think it's safe to say that I really enjoyed this and this was such a fitting conclusion for many parts of the world consisting of so many stories. The last two Avengers films have done something that few blockbusters have done in the past decade, and this is feel like a proper blockbuster.
    That means that while it may have the spectacle and grandeur, it creates many memorable characters and exciting stories that have you highly entertained and wanting to watch again and never get tired of it. It's been worth the eleven years of building up to this moment. Well done to everyone involved. This film could quite possibly break box-office records. Watch out Avatar.

    Now, where to rank it? After one viewing, I don't think it's better than Infinity War. It's pretty close. But I think the frenetic pace of it and my feelings at the ending of its predecessor is what is giving it the edge over Endgame. Maybe I'll change my mind after more viewings.
    That being said, it is a brilliant final chapter to this era of the MCU. We already have another installment coming up later this summer. I will be intrigued to see what hints they'll be giving us into where this franchise is heading to now.

    In terms of credits scenes, it was fitting that there were no scenes to speak of. There is however is sneaky bit of audio at the very end that bookends this era of the MCU rather well. Also, the first part of the credits is great to watch and a wonderful way of sending off various characters.

    Rating: 8/10

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