Farewells are never easy, and the one after 11 years and 21 movies, can be even more difficult to deal with. It was difficult for the fans to bid adieu to some of their most beloved superheroes, it wasn’t easy for the Russo Brothers either to bring the build up after Infinity War to a satisfactory conclusion. The climactic episode of the Infinity Saga could never be the business as usual and the creators hit the bullseye with a high-on-emotion yet action-packed finale that keeps you glued to your seat for the entire runtime of three hours.
Dear Mr. Fantasy play us a tune. Something to make us all happy. Do anything, take us out of this gloom. Dear Mr. Fantasy song plays in the background of Marvel Flip Intro, and gloomy is certainly the world of the defeated heroes, reuniting not to stop the evil forces this time, but to undo the damage already done by Thanos. Their only chance at restoring the life disintegrated by Infinity Stones lies in a Time Heist theory proposed by Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) who has just returned from the quantum realm. It appears a bit unimaginative to resort to Time Travel, kind of ridiculous one can say, so much so that the Avengers were the first to laugh it off referencing Back to the Future, echoing the reaction of the audience. But, there is a bigger force at play and a bigger goal to achieve than to contemplate the feasibility of Time Travel – to defeat a villain who has succeeded in what he intended to do with the Infinity Stones and to bring to a closure the story arcs of six original Avengers. If it takes Time Travel to turn back the clock and experience some of the most cherished moments of Avengers’ journey, so be it. The defeat at the hands of Thanos was the lowest point for the Avengers, and the rise had to be unprecedented.
Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), stuck in deep space, is rescued by Captain Marvel (Brie Larson), who gets very limited screen time in the movie as she is mostly out ‘saving other planets’. Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) thinks it was worst for him as he lost twice. He manages to put the brains of Bruce and brawn of Hulk together to achieve ‘Professor Hulk’ identity. He is amused by his old-self smashing things around in the past. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is a bit low on his Godly charm as a beer-guzzling ruler of Asgard’s refugees in Norway. Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), in the opening scene, is seen having a good time with his family before everything changes in a snap. He is found by Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) in Tokyo in a different avatar as Ronin with a new weapon and a new costume. The world is in our hands. It’s left to us guys. And we got to do something with it, says Captain America (Chris Evans) leading a support group in New York. MCU started out with Iron Man and owed the character a fitting send-off. The grand battle that begins with a final call of ‘Avengers, Assemble’ to defeat inevitable Thanos had to end with a call back to what started it all – ‘I am Iron Man.’
Some of the most touching moments of the movie came in the form of superheroes reuniting with their loved ones while traveling back through time. Captain America seeing Peggy Carter at S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters and finally having that dance with her before the end credits roll. Tony Stark having a moment with his father and giving his old man some parenting advice, Cap watching from a distance and anxiously signaling him to move. The future hasn’t been kind to you, has it? Thor’s mother is not surprised at all to see her son visiting from the future, and offers him much-needed consolation and some wise counsel.
The ensemble scene at Tony Stark’s funeral brings every important character from the MCU universe together to pay tribute to the legacy and sacrifice of Iron Man. So what’s next? Thor joins the Guardians of the Galaxy on Banter after appointing Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) the queen of the New Asgard. Captain America is tasked to return all the Infinity Stones to their respective points in time to prevent new futures. He decides to stay a bit longer in the past, well an entire lifetime actually, to grow old with the love of his life, Peggy. He does return to the future one more time, now as a content happy old man to hand over his shield to Falcon.
Emotions ran deep, expectations ran high and the movie had a lot of ground to cover, but certainly, the team pulled it off in the most magnificent, truly Marvel way.
Image: Marvel Studios