Picking up where “Avengers: Infinity War” left off, “Avengers: Endgame” is the next film in the Marvel Universe. This film was the emotional ending of a series of Marvel films that included the original “Avengers.” Already breaking the global box office record, “Endgame” is set on a track to possibly become the highest grossing film of all time raking in $1.2 billion in its opening.
Warning: There are major spoilers ahead.
With newer additions to the Avengers team including Tom Holland as Peter Parker, introducing us to the friendly neighborhood Spiderman; Chris Pratt as Star Lord, ushering in the Guardians of the Galaxy; and Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, bringing in the powerful female superhero, the universe continues to grow, which will add to the foundation of the next phase of Marvel films.
Using time and the quantum realm as a tool, the film dances between the deep past and the devastating present. The quantum realm was first introduced in “Ant-Man,” though its true powers are brought to light in “Endgame” as it becomes a key time-traveling agent. The use of time as a fluid method of travel brings intense nostalgia and adds a touch of frightening unpredictability, which keeps the audience constantly holding their breath.
The ultimate goal of this film is to go back and undo the damage that Thanos (Josh Brolin), one of the most powerful super-villians in the Marvel universe, did by wiping out half of the population in “Infinity War.” A successful mission would prove once again that the Avengers can save the universe. The devastating loss of friends, family and members of the Avengers adds the right amount of emotional edge.
The Avengers are able to revisit old loved ones in their trips back in time. Thor is reunited with his mother; Captain America sees his love interest Peggy Carter and Ironman gets to see what his father was like before he was born. This added touch made the film even more of a tear jerker when it re-visited emotional bonds that were formed in past films.
Though the film was full of tearful and emotional scenes, Marvel used their typical satirical and humorous spins as perfect comedic relief. Images of an overweight, beer-belly stricken Thor (Chris Hemsworth) combined with Tony Stark’s (Robert Downey Jr.) typical witty retorts, and a constantly confused Ant-Man, reminded viewers that there is always humor — even in sadness.
By challenging political stereotypes and issues Marvel brings not only relevance to the current political climate but also a deeper connection to the world outside of superheroes, space and talking racoons. Putting Captain Marvel on the front lines as a powerful superhero that constantly saves the day when the Avengers are running out of hope creates a deeper sense of empowerment for women of all ages who are watching. Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow), who became a mother in this film, steps into a traditional Ironman suit and fights alongside Tony Stark, making her the true definition of a super-mom. This imagery and use of powerful female roles is a great turn from past films where important female characters only received a few lines despite their importance to the plot.
There are even more critical roles staring minorities that make each film a greater step in the right direction. The creation of Black Panther brought an entire world of people of color to the Marvel screen and placed them on the front lines of importance. It very quickly became a hit and is leading trends for new films.
This film serves as a vessel to bring the old Marvel chapter to a close and open new doors for the next generation of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. With every ending comes painful goodbyes to beloved characters. Marvel pulled this off tastefully by allowing the characters to leave the screen in a righteous and courageous manner. Saying goodbye to Ironman and Black Widow was a monumental moment in the Marvel Universe. Their deaths saved the universe and brought a sense of relief — they died as heroes. Captain America passed the torch off to a reluctant Falcon (Anthony Mackie) by giving up his shield to live a life of peace in retirement. This retirement was not only symbolic as a goodbye to Captain America, but it also served as a political gesture, as Falcon questioned if he is worthy of this power as a minority. By Captain America giving Falcon his shield and a new sense of power, Marvel is adding more hope for minority inclusion in future Marvel films.
“Avengers: Endgame” is the true end of an era. It tied together everything that has made fans fall in love with the Marvel Cinematic Universe since the very first Ironman. The perfect combination of scenes from the past, classic humor, incredible music, tearful goodbyes, epic battle scenes and the final sense of heroic triumph reveal the best of the Avengers as a whole.