26 Thoughts on Avengers Infinity War (MCU Spoilers)

  1. Thanos is really well constructed which is a major step up from many single dimensional MCU villains. Compare him to Malekith, Ultron, etc and he is clearly superior.
  2. Marvel still struggles to develop memorable musical  themes. We’ve watched ~20 Marvel movies and can only just about remember the Avengers theme tune. Star Wars it ain’t.
  3. It felt like the finale of a TV show. We’ve had the character development in previous films and other than perhaps, Thor, Quill, Wanda and Thanos who got some this time. That’s fine, characters don’t always need to grow and watching new interacts was satisfying and fun.
  4. Thanos is the film’s hero. He is a paragon of sacrificing things for the greater good. Shame he’s a utilitarian.
  5. Sometimes fantasy tires me out in that it can seemingly only ever discuss the opposing views of Utilitarianism (the ends justify the means) and Deontologism (that some things are ultimately right and wrong, no matter their effects). This was a good film, but it was still every much in these lines. Any chance of a film discussing single payer vs free market healthcare? (ed. It’s been pointed out to us that Black Panther discusses isolationism vs interventionism/ open borders, so yeah, Black Panther was really great)
  6. That said, I wasn’t upset by the film’s oversimplistic philosophical masterplan. It is a comic book film and a large but flawed premise is fine. Also maybe Thanos genuinely has more experience, is insane or just believes in small government and his own corruptibility. Did we honestly expect them to send Peter Singer to debate with Thanos? No (because they’d probably agree #Burn)
  7. Marvel has created a wide and varied set of characters who it can use to play of one another. The MCU is a genuinely stratospheric cinematic achievement. That almost all films are good and a number are great particularly the latest is not to be taken for granted.
  8. We enjoyed it. It was a fun.
  9. The clear theme of sacrifice in which characters are willing to give themselves/ what is important to them for the greater good.  Thanos’ mission, Vision’s death, the exchange of the Time Stone all pointed towards questioning what should be sacrificed to achieve our aims. Notable was the march of a father and a child up a mountain ending in a sacrifice. Unlike the Biblical story, the child gets sacrificed.
  10. There were a lot of callback to other films. The drop pods and 6 armed monsters are very similar to Warhammer (not that I know anything about that.. shifty eyes). Ebony Maw’s death is very Alien:Resurrection (warning: very gruesome). The henchman (Corvus Glaive) reminded me of someone from World of Warcraft.
  11. The henchmen were set up as being difficult to kill, but died fairly easily to provide the heroes with success.
  12. That the henchmen were more interesting, was another significant improvement over Age of Ultron where the two power levels (useless grunt/Ultron) give no room for Black Widow/ Hawkeye to hold there own.
  13. It’s clear they are saving emotional resolution for the second film, with obvious cadences in the meeting of Iron Man/Captain America and the arrival of Hulk.
  14. Was Ant Man smuggled into the infinity gauntlet? We just don’t know. (Props to John for this idea)
  15. Did Strange MD do some mirror universing? I’d be pretty dissatisfied if this were the case, since Thanos really ought to know when that happens.
  16. The 50% of all life dying will clearly be reversed, though I was moved by that finale so it will be hard not to just do away with a really meaningful moment. We are hoping that the there will be satisfying costs to this recovery, perhaps to the original Avengers. No not those ones.
  17. This film is ambitious in a way that surprises me from the most franchisey of franchise films. Star Wars VII and VIII took nowhere near this many risks. Henry VIII arguably took more.
  18. Wouldn’t it have been funny if one planet of people we don’t like are unaffected because Thanos doesn’t consider them to be intelligent life. My vote is on Naboo.
  19. What is the choice of secondary characters who survive? It seems likely that beyond the original avengers, only Rocket, Nebula, War Machine, Valkyrie, Korg and Okoye really have the clout to join the team.
  20. Were the characters from Black Panther sidelined because of a lack of certainty on whether they would be well received by the public? Now that Black Panther was a huge success, will that affect editing of the next film (since it has already been shot).
  21. We expect to see Captain Marvel.
  22. The film goes for the classic generic visual style, rather than the more distinctive styles of both Black Panther and Thor: Ragnarok. We think that’s a shame.
  23. As the key romantic subplot in Thor: Ragnarok will we see Valkyrie and Black Widow fight over Bruce/Hulk.
  24. Marvel struggles to make key emotional cadences stick after the end of a film. Asgard is not a place its a people, half of whom die and who Thor quickly deserts. He is the god of storms with one eye, who quickly gets another eye and axe hammer thing. Bucky seems perfectly healed with only a Black Panther cut scene as explanation. Iron Man stops building extra suits but not actually. War Machine is functionally fine despite supposedly not being able to walk. Time and again, Marvel ends films satisfyingly with big payoffs which it quickly ignores in later films. We hope the final is not treated likewise.
  25. Since it is Thanos not Gomorra who grows from her death, I’d be satisfied by a Guardian of the Galaxy film about venturing into death to exchange the soul stone for her. Mecha-Cerberus, black hole as river Styx, a better version of Pirates of the Caribbean 3. I am open to being optioned for Dante’s Inferno meets Guardians.
  26. Preganancy did not work out for Paltrow in Se7en (I m34n r3411y?), will it work out for her this time?

By Tom Amos and Nathan Young

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