Spoilers, I guess?
Avengers Endgame is everything I ever wanted or needed. The absolute perfect culmination to this particular 22 film saga that makes up the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The fine folks at Marvel Studios deserve all the special Oscars for their singular achievement in turning a franchise of films into a super convincing facsimile of a television season. Endgame is the best season finale one could have wished for.
It’s the MCU’s Return of the King, and it deserves the same accolades and awards the final Lord of the Rings film received.
While you needn’t have watch the prior 21 MCU films to enjoy Endgame, would argue it’s not nearly as fulfilling. In electing to use time-travel as the mechanism to undo the damage done by Thanos in Infinity Wars, Endgame offers an endless amount hark backs to the earlier movies that are not mere fan-service, but integral plot-points. Throughout the lengthy 3-hour runtime (I survived the great bathroom avoidance experiment), audiences are delighted with surprise after surprise, and each hit wouldn’t have as great an impact if you didn’t see some of the films in the series.
And that’s why the MCU is indeed like the biggest television series ever made, in terms of scale and monetary expense (take that, Game of Thrones). Endgame does superbly well to provide closure to the many plot-lines that’s been simmering for the past decade. There’s heavy emotional weight to the entire proceedings because of the backlog of stories that preceded it, where otherwise in a vacuum, Endgame wouldn’t have made any sense at all. Everything felt precisely earned, and as an audience you cannot help but laugh, cheer, and cry during the moments because the satisfaction hits you right at the heart.
One example: not once in the over ten years of MCU has Captain America uttered the iconic phrase “Avengers, assemble”, so when he finally did so just before the climactic battle in Endgame, my emotions came rushing out just as the Avengers went charging towards Thanos’ army.
Is that the best moment of the film? Difficult to say right now; there’s so many to choose from, and I’ve still got to see Endgame many, many more times. Cap’ wielding Thor’s hammer, Iron Man’s ultimate sacrifice, Hawkeye and Black Widow on Vormir, Tony saying goodbye to his father, Professor Hulk; there’s brilliance littered over the entire movie, and I’ve only peeled off the first layer of the onion.
The Russo brothers have created a masterpiece in Avengers Endgame, a marvelous bookend to consolidate the interweaving MCU storylines into the most gratifying last chapter. It’s a resounding closure for all of us that have followed from the very first episode: 2008’s Iron Man.