With the release of Avengers: Infinity War finally upon us, the reviews are in. The lengthy movie is the culmination of 10 years of storytelling, with 18 movies released since the Marvel Cinematic Universe launched with Iron Man in 2008. So what do the critics think of this truly epic superhero team-up?
The reviews are extremely positive, if not quite as unanimous in their praise as the recent Black Panther. Infinity War currently has a Rotten Tomatoes score of 86%, compared to Black Panther's hugely impressive 96%. It also currently sits behind the like of Thor: Ragnarok (92%) and Spider-Man: Homecoming (92%).
Nevertheless, many critics loved the movie. The Avengers: Infinity War review from GameSpot's own Mike Rougeau says the film "does justice both to the promise Marvel has been riding on for the last decade, and the source material that inspired it. Somehow, for all its fire and fury--the raw spectacle of it all--Infinity War is a surprisingly human story. Marvel has accomplished something truly incredible here, although at this point it's no more than the absurdly high quality bar Marvel fans have come to expect."
Most critics were unified on the impressive scale and spectacle of the movie. "The scale and grandeur of Infinity War surpasses anything else to date in the genre," said Mark Hughes of Forbes. "It makes a loud, bold declaration of what is truly possible in superhero cinema, challenging filmmakers to reach higher and challenging audiences to keep demanding more."
Den of Geek's James Hunt agrees, writing, "Avengers: Infinity War is epic and operatic, with scope and ambition. It’ll leave you simultaneously breathless and emotionally devastated--and when you’ve pulled yourself together, you’ll want to do it all over again."
The challenge that directors Joe and Anthony Russo faced by juggling so many characters was something that a number of writers focused on . Sara Stewart of the New York Post stated that prior knowledge of the MCU is essential. "You'll need some context to properly appreciate the reunions, the awkward first-time meetings, the snark and the sheer incongruity of seeing wildly different characters interact," she wrote. "[But] with a cast as talented and genial as this one, nearly every matchup is a winner."
The Seattle Times' Moira MacDonald also thought that it was sometimes hard to keep track of every character. "Watching the enjoyable but overstuffed superhero epic Avengers: Infinity War is kind of like attending a crowded cocktail party where you more-or-less know everyone, but sometime struggle to put names and backstories to the faces," she said.
However, not everyone loved Infinity War. Matt Zoller Seitz of RobertEbert.com liked the movie, but thought something was missing. "This movie shouldn't just engage and amuse and occasionally move us; it should shock and scar us," he said. "Deep down, we all know that modern superhero movies are operating with even lower dramatic stakes than Star Wars or James Bond movies. This is, as many have pointed out, one half of a story broken in two, but it feels like less than half somehow."
Avengers: Infinity War is in theaters on April 26.
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