Endgame: Taking Cinema to New Heights
I realized recently that I haven’t written a single thing about Marvel’s latest film, Avengers: Endgame. I often post on social media to tell friends what I think of a movie I've been anticipating...but not in this case. A big reason is that I’ve been insanely busy making a living and fighting for my husband to get the healthcare and referrals he needs. He’s had a mystery illness since last summer, and we still have no diagnosis, so my brain is very distractible and forgetful these days. Still, few
movies have had an impact upon me like Endgame. In a world of casual popcorn flicks, the Russo brothers’ sequel to Infinity War stands head and shoulders above many other films. It is a cinematic marvel (pun intended), the likes of which I have rarely seen.
When I was 12, Jackson’s Fellowship of the Ring came out in theaters. Having only read The Hobbit prior, I went into the film with no idea of the thrilling movie I was about to see. I was so enraptured by Tolkien's epic world, compelling story, and incredible characters that time passed in the blink of an eye. I had no idea I’d been munching popcorn for 2 ½ hours, and got a stomach ache afterwards that made dinner look VERY unappealing. ;) Suffice it to say, movies have always been like a fine dessert to me. Something watched seldom, and savored if baked well. I only re-watch films I really like, and I only buy my absolute favorites. Thus it was with excitement that I viewed the first several films of what would become the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Ironman wasn’t my favorite, but I LOVED Captain America and REALLY liked Thor. Over the years, I spent time and money going into the theater and connecting with these well-crafted characters. After all, as a writer, I have a deep appreciation for a good story.
was dead silent. The credits rolled. The audience erupted in gasps and cries of shock. Me, my husband, and our friends were stunned. I felt sick to my stomach, and left the theater probably looking as dejected as I felt. Love it or hate it, Marvel did an excellent job pulling on its fans’ heart strings. We were so used to seeing our favorite heroes win, to fight another day. Actually having them lose or, WORSE, crumble to dust, was an emotional sucker punch. (I’m looking at you, Peter Parker).
When Infinity War came out, I was hyped. My husband, being the wonderful nerd he is, had been giving me background on the infinity stone struggle. To actually see it, however, was quite the experience. The film is masterfully-crafted and well-paced. So much is going on, but it’s pretty easy to follow, and that battle in Wakanda gave me as many chills as the final conflict in Return of the King once had. And then…the Snap. As our favorite characters melted away before our eyes, so our hearts melted away with them. The theater
Like many people, my husband and I couldn’t wait to see Endgame. I figured Marvel would bring many of the characters back, but after how amazing Infinity War was, I was a little concerned they couldn’t top it. Oh was I SO WRONG!
In my opinion, Endgame is even better than Infinity War. It gave us time to grieve and adjust to the universe with only half of its population. It showed the responses of our various heroes to this cataclysmic event, and even gave one character something he had dreamed about in Infinity War. The first act was heavy on character development, and that was good. However, the second and third act were phenomenal.
I don’t want to give away spoilers to anyone who has yet to see it, but oh my word! Just like my first time watching Fellowship of the Ring, hours melted away without registering. I was wholly invested in this movie, and it’s an experience I won’t likely forget. I laughed, cried, and felt inspired. It was touching, bittersweet, and amazing, and oh my word that final battle! Probably the best line of the film? “I am inevitable.” “I am IRONMAN!!!” Just quoting that gives me chills! You’ll know what I mean when you watch it.
In conclusion, Endgame is a movie for the ages. It is well worth a watch! I would rank it up there with the Lord of the Rings trilogy and first Star Wars movies as a film that brought cinema to new heights. Yet I must confess that the reason I probably most enjoyed it is my inner storyteller. Stories are powerful, and so are characters we grow to know and love. Marvel did one of the most effective jobs of any film studio I know, developing heroes across a decade of good movies and creating stakes that felt genuine and heartbreakingly high. As someone writing a series about a group of heroes, I hope one day that I may succeed as well as Marvel and the Russo brothers have in telling a tale of such power and emotion. Until that time, I'll be heading back to the theater to enjoy Endgame again...