Over the last 10 years and 21 movies later, you’ve grown to love the men and women who made you believe that our world was worth fighting for, that there was some goodness left in the world and we could not give up hope. Not even when bigger and worse villains showed up from all corners of the universe could we shake our resolve to stay united.
You even fell in love with Loki, the mischief maker, and almost pushed people off the trains and cabs if they made crude jokes about Asgard.
You waited for
Stan Lee to show up for a flash appearance and you smiled. You got used to waiting until after the credits to catch not one but two scenes from the next superhero film.
You had an endless discussion (sometimes with strangers) about kinks of your favourite hero and hoped no one from work would find you at comic con, screaming your lungs out, ‘Loki! Loki!’
is like that one lifetime’s pilgrimage for fans - a task not easy at all for any director—connecting the entire universe in three hours and one minute long. The Avengers: Endgame Russo brothers have done such a great job you can’t but marvel at the film. The film is being shown without any intermission, so those with a weak bladder had better book seats in the aisles. And do arm yourself with popcorn and coffee.
I belong to a generation that queued up for
Star Wars tickets and lined up for the release of the Harry Potter books, and bought lightsabers and Samurai Jack DVD sets. I resisted wearing the ‘Whatever It Takes’ tee shirt because I was adulting.
So you know what the canyon chinned Thanos did to our world. Wiped off half of all the living creatures in the last film. Josh Brolin makes the perfect villain and his purple cruelty makes Hulk’s green pale. And just when we had fallen in love with the
Black Panther, he sends in his creepy dogs and kills him too. Wakanda could not be ‘forever’. Endgame opens to this bleak world and we see whatever’s left of it all. The trailer showed Tony Stark leave a message for Pepper Potts. VIDEO
Fans have speculated about what is going to happen in
Endgame. We have waited for over a year since Thanos wiped out half of everything. And the almost defeated Tony Stark, running out of oxygen does not help. That cannot be! Of course, you remember Nick Fury sending out that message to Captain Marvel? And you watched Ms. Danvers turn into the saviour.
As the film begins, the defeated, leftover Avengers in
Endgame made a gigantic lump in the throat threaten to burst out through my eyes. But I knew they were defeated by Thanos in the last film, right? It was just hard to see them crushed. Thankfully, not for long. After all, they gave each one sitting in the audience some dream to dream. Each superhero fulfilling a fantasy that yanked us out of our mundane lives.
What I did not expect was how deep the emotional connect of this film would be. I was expecting popcorn with cheese, not a smorgasbord of heavenly delights. Let’s say you are a Hulk fan, you will understand his duality as Hulk and Bruce Banner. And no one but you will understand why you are jealous of the Black Widow. Even if you are a fan of Valkyrie, you will come away happy. I caught Loki in the film flashback and almost jumped out of my seat. The film is a tribute to all fans of all the superheroes. And yes, the supervillains too.
I remember Thanos’ creepy, scary smile in the very first Avengers film during the credits and almost fell off my seat when he appeared in
Guardians Of The Galaxy because it meant Avengers and Guardians will connect at some later date. VIDEO
This film, too, covers the entire Avenger’s universe, and hence, when we travel from one world to another: Earth and Asgard and… we need to stay focused. Will the big six find a way to defeat Thanos?
I must mention this because I love action flicks. If you have seen
The Twilight Samurai, you will become a fan of Hiroyuki Sanada. He appears briefly in the beginning of this film and we are treated to a fabulous sword fight. You will also see him in John Wick 3: Parabellum which is rumoured to release sometime later this year.
The highs of the film are in the writing, and as always the humour wins. But as I said before the emotional connect that some scenes make with the audience are simply brilliant. And that’s because we have invested in these characters over the years. It’s amazing to see threads neatly tied up and you will wipe more than a tear as you laugh.
The references of other films not of the superhero franchise make you smile, but I cannot mention them here or I’d be blacklisted for mentioning spoilers in the review. The music doesn’t do anything spectacular and you do think that the solution the Avengers find is a tad lazy and as easy as Thanos snapping his fingers for decimation. But then no fan will come away cribbing. This is a superhero film, not some science lesson.
The action will make you ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ as well as the eureka moments of reference that make you go, ‘Remember this?!’
Many people who see this film before you will tell you that there are no post-credit scenes. Please tell them to watch the film again. Because I’m letting you in on a secret only the die-hard fans will know: there is no ‘scene’ after the end credit, but an audio cue. To quote Janet Van Dyne from
Ant Man, ‘Do not get sucked into a time vortex’, I would ask you also to not sigh too much but hear that last sound cue.
Avengers Endgame is playing at all hours in cinemas across the country I believe. Happy viewing!
Manisha Lakhe is a poet, film critic, traveller, founder of Caferati — an online writer’s forum, hosts Mumbai’s oldest open mic, and teaches advertising, films and communication.