Aug 122019
 

Although at its core I don’t think Avengers Endgame was as strong compared to Infinity War, the emotional aspects however more than made up for it, and the biggest impact was Robert Downey Jr.’s fantastic performance.

 

 

Avengers: Endgame
(2019)

Genre(s): Action, Drama, Fantasy
Disney | PG13 – 181 min. – $29.99 | August 13, 2019

Date Published: 08/12/2019 | Author: The Movieman


MOVIE INFO:
Directed by: Anthony and Joe Russo
Writer(s): Stan Lee and Jack Kirby (characters); Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely (screenplay)
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, Paul Rudd, Josh Brolin, Bradley Cooper, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chadwick Boseman, Brie Larson, Tom Holland, Karen Gillan, Zoe Saldana, Evangeline Lilly, Tessa Thompson, Rene Russo, Elizabeth Olsen, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan


DISC INFO:
Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, Gag Reel
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: Blu-ray, DVD
Number of Discs: 2


Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 7.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.39
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Disc Size: 45.61 GB
Total Bitrate: 32.29 Mbps
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A, B, C


Buena Vista Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.


THE MOVIE — 4.25/5


Ten years of momentous work has come to a head with Avengers: Endgame, the second part that began with last year’s Infinity War which saw many beloved characters turn to ash, though almost everyone knew they would come back, taking a bit of a bite out of any emotions that emerged from the final scenes. When I first saw Avengers: Endgame I, like many, was impressed, not so much for the story — which I found to be a bit thin — but just what Marvel had accomplished over the course of a decade.

Endgame pretty much opens where Infinity War leaves off. Half of the world’s population has vanished, including a large chunk of the Avengers leaving behind Tony Stark/Iron Man (ROBERT DOWNEY JR.), Steve Rogers/Captain America (CHRIS EVANS), Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (SCARLETT JOHANSSON), Bruce Banner/Hulk (MARK RUFFALO), James Rhodes/War Machine (DON CHEADLE), Clint Barton/Hawkeye (JEREMY RENNER), Thor (CHRIS HEMSWORTH), Rocket (BRADLEY COOPER) and Nebula (KAREN GILLAN). Tony and Nebula being rescued in the nick of time, as they are adrift on their spaceship, by Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel (BRIE LARSON).

After regrouping, the remaining members of the Avengers manage to track down where super-villain and mass murderer/eradicator Thanos (JOSH BROLIN) went, to his cabin and retreat, near death after doing the snap. The Avengers-lite hope to reclaim the stones and reverse the snap, unfortunately Thanos had them destroyed and even in his weakened state, is a formidable foe, however Thor, clearly reeling from the lost battle, clean cuts Thanos’ head off.

With no way to get the stones, life must move on and we fast forward five years later with a “post-snap” world and the survivors finding ways to deal. But not all is lost when Scott Lang aka Ant-Man (PAUL RUDD) emerges from the quantum realm which, after much reluctant help from Tony, now married to Pepper (GWYNETH PALTROW) and having a daughter, manages to do some super-sciency things and develop a time travel device and trackers for each member.

Utilizing the Pym Particles (to shrink people down), concoct a plan to go back in time and, in groups, grab the stones where and when they know to be (i.e. the Time, Mind and Space stones in 2012 during the events of the first Avengers movie; Reality Stone during the events of Thor: The Dark World; etc) with your normal complications that lead to some amusing and sentimental moments.

As I mentioned in the opening, if this were any other movie, it’s not the strongest story mostly because the beef of the content was handled in Infinity War where this is the aftermath and our team of heroes utilizing time travel to set things right. Kind of a cheap cop out though they jokingly gloss over the pratfalls, inconsistent logics and paradoxes of time travel. What keeps Endgame engaging of its staggering nearly three hour runtime, are the character interactions, mainly the OG ones outside of Rocket and Nebula who has grown on me as a character and look forward to her contribution in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

Over the course of the decade and 23 movies (including the recently released Spider-Man: Far from Home), the casting and acting has mostly been on point, beginning with Robert Downey Jr. who was a genius choice in hindsight but at the time,  Marvel exec Kevin Feige and Iron Man director Jon Favreau took a chance considering the actor’s turbulent history prior. And since, has done a phenomenal job as the central figure across the MCU and turned in a tremendous performance here, and while the others (those who had any significant lines/screen time at least since just about everybody got a credit) were very good, including Scarlett Johansson and the aforementioned Karen Gillen, Downey Jr. stole the show. In a fair world, I would say he is deserving an Academy Award nomination if only for his stretch as Stark, but I’d be stunned they would give any significant acknowledgement to a “comic book movie”.

Credit for the successes of both Infinity War and Endgame, alongside the wonderful ensemble cast, goes to directors Anthony and Joe Russo who burst onto the scene, with Captain America: Winter Soldier which to this day is one of the my favorite comic book movies of all time, right next to The Dark Knight. Although their work within the MCU has come to an end, their impact on this Universe was obviously momentous and, with the aid of course of Kevin Feige and others behind the scenes, they brought three phases to a nice conclusion.

As a side: Unfortunately, and it might be just me, I can’t muster much enthusiasm for Phase Four outside of Black Widow and maybe Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, if Scott Derickson does live it up to that title (where the multiverse angle was a serve in Spider-Man: Far From Home).

 

SPECIAL FEATURES – 4.0/5


This release comes with a glossy and title-embossed slip cover, inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy which does have an exclusive featurette, Steve and Peggy: One Last Dance (5:55), exploring the relationship between the characters. Note: This featurette does not play into my features rating.

Audio Commentary – Directors Anthony and Joe Russo & Writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely. This group track was a lot of fun to listen to for Infinity War and the same goes here, breaking down the filmmaking process of making such an epic ensemble film.

Featurettes (46:00):

  • Remembering Stan Lee (7:15) – Tribute to the legendary comic book writer with behind-the-scenes footage and sound-bites with the man himself. RIP.
  • Setting the Tone: Casting Robert Downey Jr. (5:25) is on perhaps one the biggest decisions in the MCU, setting the whole thing off. Pretty cool seeing some archive behind-the-scenes footage from Iron Man as well as his screen test.
  • A Man out of Time (12:18) featurette on the casting of Chris Evans as Captain America and his own importance within the development of the universe.
  • Black Widow: Whatever It Takes (7:25) is on Scarlett Johansson and what she brought to the MCU. Like the others, we get both old and new interview/footage.
  • The Russo Brothers: Journey to Endgame (5:01) chronicles the work and journey of Anthony and Joe Russo.
  • The Women of the MCU (4:52) looks at the female cast members and the ham-fisted “team-up” in Endgame. Still interesting enough with interviews with the various actresses.
  • Bro Thor (3:42) on his thunderous gut.

Deleted Scenes (4:51) include six scenes that were cut, likely for pacing issues. While these were nice, they weren’t necessary to advancing the plot or characters.

Last up is a short Gag Reel (1:58).

 


VIDEO – 4.5/5


Buena Vista releases Avengers: Endgame onto Blu-ray presented in its original 2.39 widescreen aspect ratio and has been given a nice looking 1080p high-definition transfer. The picture looks pristine throughout and detail is sharp while colors, even with the darkly toned elements, tended to be bright, an example being the deep red in Iron Man’s suit or blues in Captain America’s outfit. Black levels are stark without appearing crushed. There were no obvious signs of flaws like banding, aliasing, artifacting, etc.

AUDIO – 5.0/5


I will keep harping on this, but still perplexes me why studios like Disney and Fox continue to give their Blu-rays, albeit great, DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 tracks while the 4K UHD counterparts Dolby Atmos; makes no sense but alright. In any case, the track included here was strong, dialogue levels came through the center speaker with nice clarity and the action-centric sequences sounded awesome and evenly enveloped the room.

 


OVERALL – 4.0/5


Although at its core I don’t think Avengers Endgame was as strong compared to Infinity War, the emotional aspects however more than made up for it, and the biggest impact was Robert Downey Jr.’s fantastic performance. The Blu-ray release offers up excellent video/audio transfers and a good selection of bonus features.

 

 

 

 

Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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