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Review Roundup: Critics Weigh In On AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR

Review Roundup: Critics Weigh In On AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR

An unprecedented cinematic journey ten years in the making and spanning the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios' "Avengers: Infinity War" brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time. The Avengers and their Super Hero allies must be willing to sacrifice all in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.

Avengers: Infinity War is a 2018 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to 2012's Marvel's The Avengers and 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron, and the nineteenth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, with a screenplay by the writing team of Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and features an ensemble cast including Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Don Cheadle, Tom Holland, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Dave Bautista, Zoe Saldana, Josh Brolin, and Chris Pratt. In Avengers: Infinity War, the Avengers join forces with the GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY to stop Thanos from amassing the all-powerful Infinity Stones.

The epic film hits theaters today, so let's see what the critics are saying:

Owen Gleiberman, Variety: "So is the movie a jumbled, top-heavy mess of cynical franchise overkill? Sort of like the bloated and chaotic "Avengers: Age of Ultron" taken to the second power? Far from it. It's a sleekly witty action opera that's at once overstuffed and bedazzling. The directors, Anthony and Joe Russo, working from a script by the crack team of Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely (who wrote their two "Captain America" sequels), are far more stylish and exacting filmmakers than Joss Whedon, director of the first two "Avengers" films. "Infinity War" is a brashly entertaining jamboree, structured to show off each hero or heroine and give them just enough to do, and to update their mythologies without making it all feel like homework. At the same time, you may begin to lose hold of what made each of these characters, you know, special."

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: "By contrast, Infinity War is all over the place, straining to give everyone a seat at the table. There are 30 lead roles, each actor getting his or her pass at the camera - clocking in at over two hours and 29 minutes, you'll have Avengers coming out of your ears. As Tony Stark/Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr. gobbles up the most screen time and seems vastly amused to hear Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) use the word "hitherto" in a sentence. Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo, a riot) tries to work himself into a rage so he can hulk out and bulk up like a jolly green human battering ram. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) gets to mix it up with the Guardians of the Galaxy, led by a jealous Peter Quill/Star Lord (Chris Pratt) - who's told that, in contrast to the muscular Norse god, he's "one sandwich away from being fat." And there's a definite thrill in watching Steve Rogers/Captain America (Chris Evans) and Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland) do battle alongside King T'Challa/Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) and Okeye (Danai Gurira), the head of his female army, in the fields of Wakanda."

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: "Flip is one of the movie's two main modes, the other being full-bore mayhem. "Infinity War" is often very funny, in a self-deprecating vein, and not just thanks to Mr. Downey, who can get a laugh with a conjunction, or Mr. Pratt, who charms with a raised eyebrow. Bruce sweats and strains, to no avail at first, as he tries to transform into Hulk. (It's the flip side of anger management.) Spidey, the new boy on the block (played by Mr. Holland, the new actor in the role), swings his way into Thanos's doughnut-shaped space ship, with an inner ring that rotates like the magnet in a gigantic MRI, and says it smells like a new car. "I'm Doctor Steven Strange, " announces Doctor Strange, who makes a theatrical entrance worthy of a stage magician in a ring of fire in New York's Central Park. (His sententiousness is witty for a while, then wears thin.)"

Brian Truitt, USA Today: "The film pays off previous Marvel movies in a multitude of ways, none more with the coming of Thanos (played via performance capture by Josh Brolin). Part tyrant and part cult leader, the massive villain trade fisticuffs with the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), no sweat, and offers balance and "salvation" to the universe by wiping out half of existence. (Without saying too much, the dude knows finite resources are a thing and, in his own way, is worried about overpopulation.) To pull off this genocidal act, he needs to collect six Infinity Stones that hold ultimate power when used together."

Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun Times: "Once the severity of the crisis is evident, most of the feuds and squabbles and self-interests are set aside, with Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), Spider-Man (Tom Holland), Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), among others, teaming up to save not only the world, but the universe. "Infinity War" kicks into a particularly exhilarating gear when the action shifts to Wakanda, where Chadwick Boseman's Black Panther gathers his armies and joins the fight; the genius Dr. Bruce Banner is stunned by the amazing mind of Shuri, and the great warrior Okoye (Danai Gurira) gets one look at the powers of the Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) in battle and exclaims, "What was she doing [back in the lab] all this time"!"

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