Wednesday, May 02, 2018

So I Finally Saw Infinity War Last Night...

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... and it's impossible to review it without talking about spoilers... and I kind of don't even want to write a big proper review anyway... so if anybody wants to share their thoughts on it let's go to the comments. I'm going to share a quick thought of my own there too. Point being if you're spoiler-averse don't click on the comments, folks.  Don't look down there at all! But since I was probably the last person on Earth to see the movie I don't think any of you will much care either...
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14 comments:

Jason Adams said...

I left the film angry, and got progressively angrier as time wore on. Until the last act the film was good, good, good, less good, it really began wearing out its welcome as it wore on and on and on, relentlessly relentless, action scene piled on top of action scene, literal planets dropping out of the sky. You felt them working for every dollar of their budget, you felt them trying to one-up themselves over and over, but at a certain point it became too much.

And I can't even begin to describe how pissed off that empty and meaningless last act made me. We KNOW it won't stick. And yet they devoted thirty seconds of my life to watching sweet little Tom Holland sobbing in Tony's arms that he didn't want to die as he slowly crumbled to dust... that is some manipulative and just MEAN bullshit. I left the theater feeling actively bad, as if I wished I hand't gone to the film at all. I left the theater feeling terrible for the little kids that just watched their friendly neighborhood Spider-man turn to ash. There is a line, and that is some manipulative Walking Dead bullshit right there.

It poisoned everything I liked about the film. Maybe I'll look back and see what worked in a few days. Am I looking forward to all of this bullshit being ret-conned, and to Brie Larson sweeping in as promised in the stinger? I guess so. But the film crossed a line they didn't earn.. couldn't have earned. Shouldn't have wanted to earn.

x said...

Long time reader, first time caller...

Wow, I'm really surprised by your dismay, although as usual you verbalize it beautifully.

Yes, WE know it won't stick, but what kept me invested was the fact that the remaining characters (Cap, Tony, Okoye, etc.) DON'T know that it won't stick, and seeing their grief was a genuine gut-punch. I'd also argue that 10 years of fairly solid character development and world-building - in addition to remaining fairly faithful to the source material (i.e. "the snap") - did earn the right to cross that line. In addition, as a faithful MCU fanboy, I really applauded the fact that a fictional universe was able to make me feel that distraught. Then again, I'm cold and dead inside, so...maybe I was just happy to feel something.

I hope that your feelings change once you've had time to process. But if not, perhaps A4 will prove even more satisfying precisely because of your feelings about this ending.

BTW, love your work.

Jason Adams said...

I've been trying to suss out where genuine heartbreak ends and irritation regarding emotional manipulation begins -- it's a space that fluctuates; it's entirely possible that I could be projecting my sadness into anger... but I don't think I am. I think they could have earned that ending if they'd been smarter about handling it - maybe if it hadn't felt like such a fakery, but the second T'Challa evaporated I knew it was all a fake-out, that they'd ret-con it very soon, and everything after that felt false, and false, and more false, and the Peter Parker thing was the last straw. It became downright mean-spirited to me at that moment. And I assume they wanted to be capital-C Cruel at that moment to make a statement about what a horror this happening was, which I get, but at least personally, from where I am standing as a fan, they misjudged the mood of this audience member.

carlwboyd said...

That's fair. And I'm with you - BP was the exact moment I started calculating how this would all be unwound, but I just attributed that to my own overactive mental gymnastics rather than putting it on the writers. Maybe I SHOULD be blaming them.

Adrian C said...

I mean i know the deaths are not gonna stick (i don't think even Gamora is gonna stay dead even though she died prior to the fingers snap), but personally i have been watching this movies since the first Iron Man came out and i still love them, and even knowing that they're gonna come back, it was exciting to watch them dissapear on screen. I'm waiting until next year to see how it gets resolved before i really decide whether it was a good "twist" or not.

However i do think it was less of a movie and more of a reward to fans, cause it definitively was an experience, particularly with the audience reactions to everything that happens.

JB said...

As soon as Black Panther 'died' I knew this all wouldn't be for keeps, and they kept going and going, and I kept groaning and eye rolling.
It's now like the boy who cried wolf, removes any genuine sense of danger in future movies if we know characters can just come back to life again (which obviously they will)

However, the bit where Troy landed in Wakanda, was such a 'moment', gave me such goosebumps, and bought maybe just enough goodwill for me to overlook the ending.

Apparently Spider-Man sobbing in Stark's arms as he died wasn't scripted, Tom Holland improvised that scene.

Anonymous said...

It was earlier for me. When Thanos said "No resurrections this time" that just screamed "Get ready for the cosmic reset button folks."
There have been some comments in other venues (Slate has a few) where they make the point that since Marvel's been broadcasting it's plans for more Spiderman, Black Panther, and Doctor Strange movies that the deaths might have been more effective if those particular characters hadn't died.

It might be a better experience if you look at it not so much as if they're going to resurrect as how.

Anonymous said...

1. I agree with the manipulation irritation. I feel studios are doing with impunity right now (who are Rey's parents? Why don't you fans deliberate and argue for two years while we crap on every one of your theories and give the bird to your fantasies). BUT I will say the manipulation worked on the audience... teens were literally sobbing inconsolably when Peter died. Watching millennials catch the vapors is now my favorite pastime. And don't get me started on the Black audience members' reactions when Black Panther died... it was like going from the elation of Obama to well... ya know..November 8, 2016 all over again. So from now until May 2019 geeks everywhere get to theorize and and deliberate only to get crapped on again. They kept saying "we don't trade lives" which means Cap is gonna trade is life. I actually think Gamora will come back because Thanos is gonna trade his soul for hers (cheesy and completely antithetical to his character but because Disney). Cap is totally a Skrull and don't know if they have souls... he ain't trading for anyone. I think everyone "pre-snap" (except Gamora) is dead. I'll miss Loki and his codpiece.

2. I had no idea Zoe Saldana was a solid actor. She played those scenes exceptionally well.

3. Hemsworth is a comedic genius.

4. Can't wait to see Tom Holland in some Oscar-baity movie. Kid is so talented.

5. Can Danai Gurira deliver a line or what? Her shade face reads and shuts down the world!

6. Why didn't they just cut off Thanos' arm when he was in a coma? Yeah.. I know...but still!

Anna said...

When the film ended my first reaction was "Oh I can't wait to see the billing order on the poster for the next movie." Are they going to hide it altogether, lie (ie not have Boseman, Holland, Cumberbatch in the credits), or just tell us the truth? And "how is promo for Avengers 4 going to be like" really shouldn't be my first thought at the end of a movie where they "killed" half the characters.

I thought the movie was fun, and had definite highlights (I agree with the above - Hemsworth is a comedic genius), but overall it left me frustrated too. What's the freaking point of announcing Spider-Man 2, Black Panther 2, and Guardians 3?! And now I just get annoyed at the fans who are sad, like why? You know they're coming back. There's a bunch of interviews of Tom Holland talking about Spider-Man 2. I'm not a huge Marvel fan but I have seen every single one of these movies and it feels, more than ever, like a waste of my time. Captain America better really die in the next one. He's my favourite, and I want these bloody movies to make me feel something!

The Letter Em said...

Long time reader, love your site and not just your marvellous choice of pics and gifs, but also your humour and writing style. Your words are always a pleasure to read.

Back on topic, I completely agree with your comment and share your sentiment. I was shocked and pained by the real deaths, but the dust deaths meant nothing to me. Am I supposed to get upset at a beautifully acted scene between Tony and Peter, when I know it's all going to be undone? What a waste of a great scene.
Think how much more effective it would have been if it had been Peter cradling a dying Tony (which would have been easier to believe was a final real death).

Chip Chandler said...

It didn't bother me any, but I'm pretty sure I know why: I read the original comics this was based on. Thanos had the same scheme there with the same results. I don't remember how that was resolved, so I guess that's why I'm most looking forward to A4 now -- to see how they pull it off. I think it would have been more effective all around if they dusted the ones whose contracts we all know are up, but I wasn't fussed about it.

Daniel said...

I am TOTALLY with you. When people started disappearing into ash, one of my movie friends whispered "Of course - all the B-listers", and then Chris Pratt disappeared, and I immediately said, "Nope, it's only gonna be the original Avengers left," and of course I was right (plus Danai Gurira and Rocket, and not-in-this-movie characters like Ant-Man and Valkyrie, presumably). It was stupid of Marvel to announce the sequels in advance of this - if they hadn't, we still would have been skeptical of the deaths but it wouldn't have felt so ridiculous. As is, I could only roll my eyes. Nothing that happened in the last act of the movie surprised me, because everything was so telegraphed and because Thanos was LITERALLY all-powerful. It felt like Marvel was desperate to create a MOMENT, but because I saw it coming a mile away it didn't have that effect on me. And if I'm being honest, I don't know how anyone who has even a passing knowledge of comic books (or, you know, dramatic structure) wouldn't have seen it coming because it felt SO obvious. It was well-done for what it was, but the ending kinda shit the bed.

Colin said...

The ending annoyed me a bit at first, but now I'm thinking all the characters who lived at the end of this one, might be the ones to permanently die in the next one as a sacrifice of sorts to save everyone else. That would be a kind of dramatic pulling of the rug out that would retroactively give this ending a dramatic sense and pay off for me. We'll see, but I'm at least willing to see how this plays out in Infinity War pt 2 (I know that's not the official name anymore, but clearly it is a pt 2) before making a final judgement.

On a related note, I'm not sure I agree with the sentiment that knowing a character ultimately lives takes away any emotion or suspense when they are seemingly dead or in peril. I still get scared re-watching quality horror movies even when I know who lives. Gandalf's 'death' in Lord of the Rings still effected me even though I had already read the books. Maybe it's a personal taste thing? Or maybe the subconscious feeling that Marvel is trying to trick the audience with these deaths is the issue here?

Aquinas1220 said...

I loved the whole thing. I've read enough of these comic books back "in the day" to know that these deaths never stay long. So even though I knew the folks would all be coming back (even Gamora), there demise can still have an emotional impact. And I agree with "x" who talked about this franchise working over a decade to build its world so well that it didn't feel like a cheap shot.