I have definitely maintained a sort of radio silence about all things Infinity War, partly because I didn’t want to be THAT person giving away spoilers but mostly because I am still completely overwhelmed. This movie immediately opens to death after death of characters we have grown to love and does not let up throughout the entirety of the almost three hour film. It took me some time to even bring myself to start writing about Infinity War, but I feel like the time has come to work through the trauma.
Infinity War starts immediately following the events of Thor: Ragnarok. We see the carnage caused by Thanos and his children (which I still cannot believe they didn’t use their true name: The Black Order – but more on that later) and bodies scattered everywhere. Now, I realized that Valkyrie had been missing from all the trailers and did not attend the premiere so my first instinct was to search the bodies for her. I was almost convinced, despite the popularity of her character in Ragnarok, that she was killed off in the unseen battle that took place earlier. But once that I saw Valkyrie was not present, I began to think about Thanos’ doctrine. Thanos only kills half of populations, so it wouldn’t be absurd to assume that he let people go on an escape pod. So then one could conclude that Thor – since he had Hulk, Heimdall and Loki with him – would want to send a warrior as well to protect the few people that were left. I really would not be surprised if we see Valkyrie in future films.
This scene was also filled with my first heartbreak. Watching Heimdall be murdered was especially traumatic for me. Heimdall was such an under utilized character and I was extremely excited to see him get the development and screen time he deserved in Ragnarok, but those hopes of a continuation of that trend were ripped away very quickly. When the ship exploded I audibly gasped in the theater, convinced it was the end of my beloved Thor. To my elation, and leading to one of my favorite team ups in the film, the Guardians of the Galaxy happen upon Thor’s floating body. Starlord’s jealousy of Thor and the ensuing comments are absolutely hilarious and yet another example to the DC universe that a dire event can occur and there can still be levity.
Now, Thanos is one of best villains I have seen in the MCU. I worried because the big world-enders in superhero films in the past have all been a flop for me. The likes of Steppenwolf have all been completely one dimensional and I worried the trend would continue. Thanos proved to be entirely different. He didn’t want to wipe out existence, in his own way he truly believed he was saving it. He proved his dedication to his cause in the most thorough way when gathering the soul stone. When Thanos, Gamora and Red Skull are all at the top of the mountain and we begin to see Thanos cry was an amazing scene and I loved that we had the context for it. I loved the scene when Gamora is a child and Thanos truly is a care taker to her, turning her head away from the violence that was about to occur. Everyone in Thanos’ life was a pawn, a means to an end, even Nebula. But that wasn’t the case for Gamora, Thanos truly loved her as a daughter which made his decision to toss her over the mountain an even more traumatic one.
A lot of folks continue to ask me about my opinion of Hulk and why he would not surface. I’ve seen a lot of ideas floating around the web since Thursday but my personal opinion is a simple one. On the ship with Thanos in the beginning of the film, Hulk got his ass handed to him. Hulk has been in plenty of fights since his emergence in the Marvel cinematic universe, but never had he been beat so soundly, and so quickly, by one opponent. I believe that Hulk was fearful of facing that enemy again. I think we should also keep in mind that Hulk and Banner were having control issues in Thor: Ragnarok so I am curious if that might have something to do with it as well.
Now I’d like to take a moment to discuss my new least favorite character in the MCU. Everyone that knows me knows that I have loathed Iron Man since I was a child and the movies over the years have reinforced that hate for me. But one character in the course of a five minute scene has manged to surpass all of that hate. Of course, I am talking about Starlord. The death of half of all beings in the universe completely falls squarely in his lap. Spider-Man had the Infinity Gauntlet almost to Thanos’ wrist when Starlord found out that Gamora was murdered. In typical Starlord fashion, he reacts without thinking. Effectively punching Mantis off of his shoulders, therefore releasing Thanos from the trance before the gauntlet could be removed all the way. Although fitting for his character, I am still unbelievably upset at how selfish Starlord is. He could not for just one second keep his emotions in check long enough to save the rest of the universe and I’m not sure that I will ever be able to forgive him for it.
The ending of Infinity Wars was devastating and I’m pretty sure I sat in the theater to cry a solid 15 minutes after the ending credits. One theory is that all the people that disappeared are now living in the soul stone and will therefore be able to return. Maybe that will require the sacrifice of Captain America and Iron Man (as we know part two will be their last films in the MCU). Another theory, however it is one that I hope isn’t true, is that all those that disappeared in Infinity War – including Black Panther and Spider-Man – will stay gone as a way to maintain a clean slate for the next phase of Marvel films.
This film managed to make its viewers experience every emotion under the sun. Regardless of the heart-wrenching ending, I loved Infinity War and will watch it several more times to see if there are additional details that I missed from the excitement of the first viewing. What are some of your thoughts on Infinity War? Let us know!