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Spoiler-free review: Marvel fans will cheer — and cry — for 'Avengers: Endgame'

By John Clyde, Contributor | Posted - Apr. 25, 2019 at 11:20 a.m.

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THANOS'S FARM — The wait is over! It’s finally here! The end is in sight!

Avengers: Endgame” is headed to theaters and all of your questions are about to be answered. All of your angst is about to fly away like dust in the wind. (Too soon?)

I had the opportunity to see “Avengers: Endgame” earlier this week, and I have to be honest, keeping everything under my hat has been difficult. There is so much excitement and anticipation around this film. I hear conversations about it nonstop, and now I finally get to share my thoughts.

As always, this will be a spoiler-free review of “Avengers: Endgame.”

The 22nd entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is not the best film the studio has put out, but it is undoubtedly the most epic and emotional one.

Here are some reasons “Avengers: Endgame” is well-worth your time and why fans of Marvel are going to feel like they’re a young child waking up on Christmas morning.

What's set in stone

It’s still funny

One of the best parts of Marvel movies is the humor. Some of the films have fallen short here, but others have delivered it with great success.

I was worried “Endgame” was going to be incredibly heavy and serious considering what happened in “Infinity War.” While much of the tone is dour and melancholy, directors Joe and Anthony Russo made sure to lighten the mood at the right times and have some laugh-out-loud moments, which the movie desperately needed.

Don’t get me wrong, this is definitely one of the heaviest Marvel movies to date. But the humor is played at the right time and lands nearly every time.

It’s clever and unexpected

I wasn’t totally sure what to expect coming into “Endgame.” I was worried it would be a rehash of “Infinity War” with the heroes battling Thanos in an effort to avenge what he did.

My usual complaint with Marvel films is how formulaic they are, but I knew the filmmakers would have some tricks up their sleeves this time. While the narrative itself is somewhat formulaic, overall I was really impressed with how clever and unexpected the film was.

I’m obviously not going to tell you anything about why it’s so clever, but let’s just say the methods and approaches taken were a total shock to me.

At times I said to myself, “Are they really doing this? This will never work.” Then the next thing I knew it was working far better than it should have and I was fully invested in the story and action.

I am not familiar with the comic books, so I can’t tell you if it follows those storylines or if it takes a new direction, but for me it was a real treat to watch it all unfold.

The unexpectedness continues on right until the end of the film.

Usually with any superhero movie you know where they’re headed by the third act and know how things will wrap up. But I have to be honest when I say, I was surprised on a few occasions as the conclusion approached.

It’s a fitting conclusion

Not only is this the 22nd film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it is also the fourth "Avengers" movie and the last for this story arc.

Marvel Studios has been building to this moment since "Iron Man" in 2008, and pulling off a satisfying conclusion to all of it seemed all but impossible.

But I have to say, they did it — for me at least.

I am pretty tough on Marvel movies. I seriously dislike several, I am neutral on a few more and I really enjoy a handful. With my on-again, off-again relationship with the Marvel Cinematic Universe I wasn’t expecting to be really into the finale, but I was wrong.

The Russo brothers have crafted a satisfying and entertaining finale that wraps up a lot of loose ends and still leaves us wanting more.

Thor steals the show

The first two Thor films are at the top of the list of Marvel movies I really dislike. I like Chris Hemsworth, but Thor was my least favorite Avenger due to those movies.

Then “Thor: Ragnarok” came along and changed my opinion of the god of thunder. I continued to like his character in “Infinity War.”

I can now confidently say “Endgame” has made Thor my all-time favorite Avenger, and I think he may become yours as well. His character takes some hilarious and emotional leaps in this movie, and Hemsworth plays them brilliantly.

At three hours and one minute, I’m not planning on running back out to see “Endgame” again anytime soon, but I may make the trip again for Thor.

Where the dust still hasn't settled

It’s not perfect

It may seem like I’m pouring high praise on “Endgame,” and overall I am, but I don't think it’s a perfect film or even the best of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I’d say it’s one of the better Marvel films, but it’s not the best.

When someone runs a marathon, for example, mile 26 is likely not their best mile, but it is the most important and likely the most memorable.

“Endgame” is like mile 26 of an 11-year marathon. It’s not the best mile of the race, but it’s the one we’re all going to remember and look back on fondly.


“Avengers: Endgame” is long and has so much going on. But the storylines are weaved together well to keep the pace moving, the jokes come fast and the emotions are strong.

The performances are solid and there will be crying, cheering and laughing throughout theaters around the globe.

This is a movie made for Marvel fans. That doesn’t mean people who like only some of what the studio has to offer won’t enjoy the film, but it will be the event of the decade for die-hard Marvel supporters.

Check tomorrow to see Dave Clyde’s content guide for parents on the film

If you're still preparing for "Endgame," check out our list of 12 essential Marvel films to catch up on before seeing “Avengers: Endgame.”

"Avengers: Endgame" is rated PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and some language.John has grown up around movies and annoys friends and family with his movie facts and knowledge. John also has a passion for sports and pretty much anything awesome and it just so happens that these are the three things he writes about.

John Clyde

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