‘Infinity War’ Sets Super High Expectations

Joshua Perry, News Editor

Conflict was inevitable.

That’s the prevailing theme of Marvel’s latest star-studded super-superhero blockbuster, “Infinity War.” There’s the sheer momentum of all of its plot threads, heroes and villains converging at once for a 2 hour and 40 minute-long collision. Then there’s the clash that comes from having an enormous cast compete in a battle royale for the audience’s valuable attention.

The result? Daring. Dazzling. Dizzying. It somehow managed to hold together after impact, all for one reason: Marvel changed their formula.

Marvel Studios, masters of the comic book-commando and comedian alike, aren’t wildly popular for their insightful themes or meticulous character development. Audiences go to see the impossible become possible and their favorite heroes save the day. No more, no less.

Recently, that’s not been the case. “Black Panther” successfully tweaked the Marvel formula, depicting a realistic bad guy and an admirable theme. But if “Black Panther” turned the tables on audiences, “Infinity War” holds them by the ankles and shakes them silly.

This movie has as much emotional turmoil as Marvel can mix in. But it’s not out of place or unbalanced: there’s plenty of the jokes, near-death experiences, stunning special effects and iconic entrances that fans know and love.

This feels-fight cocktail is spicy enough on its own—that’s another thing “Black Panther” proved—but that by itself  isn’t what makes “Infinity War” stand out.

Of course, star power provides a huge boost as well. Zoe Saldana’s Gamora may have been one of the most memorable characters of “Infinity War,” and Saldana brings her to the screen with ease. And who could forget the real first Avenger, Robert Downey Jr., who returns with hands a-blazing and quips flying as the iconic Iron Man? But even those stellar performances aren’t what gives the movie its spark.

Simply and spoilerless-ly put, something big happens. Really big. And it’s probably safe to say that no one expected it.

And sure, there will be some conflict. Not everyone is ready for such an astronomical divergence from the standard engage-fight-win superhero movie-methodology. But both longtime-fans and recent initiates are more hooked on the series than ever, so it looks like the shift was successful. The movie truly draws viewers in.

Once you cross the event horizon of “Infinity War,” there’s no going back. It’s worth the trip, though.