30 April 2018

Marvel Gets Its Stones Out

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If you visit Amsterdam, there's a sex museum that most people go to in which there are replicas of two giant cocks that you can sit between and have your photo taken. Like one of those giant cocks, the mad titan Thanos is a huge scary bastard with a big purple head who looks like he wants to fuck everything. Although in his case I obviously mean that in a destructive way, such as the time that U2 fucked our iTunes collection by having their latest shit album automatically pollute our phones with their unwanted twangly bollocks. For those who have been living under a rock then Thanos is the villain in Marvel's latest Avengers: Infinity War and who we've been warned has been coming for quite some time now. Which is another similarity to a giant cock I suppose. Although if you're not completely up to speed on the multi-franchise team-up, then good luck on following whatever the shit is going on in this movie because it doesn't really do much to help bring you in. At one point Peter Parker is sat on his school bus when he spots an alien invasion in the distance. Quick as a flash he web-slings the window open in order to escape and head over to it. If you didn't know he was Spider-Man, then you're essentially watching a young man fling his stringy 'substance' at a window, which is something you can't even get away with at an Amsterdam sex museum.

Normally I believe that a film should be completely self-contained with all of the information needed to understand its plot housed within its own running time. I remember having a question about The Da Vinci Code to which a friend reliably informed me that if I'd read the book then the film would make complete sense. But in the same way that I shouldn't have to watch a terrible film to find out the shite books that my friends actually read, nor should I have to read a shite book to understand a film that I've already shat away two hours of my life on. By that same logic, I therefore consider it an absolute criticism of Avengers: Infinity War that if I'd had a Marvel-Virgin with me then the only real way that they'd know why Iron-Man and Captain America weren't talking is if I then gave them about seven more DVD's to watch as fucking homework. On the flip-side to that of course, I suppose you have to ask- who the fuck cares? The screen that I saw this movie at was so full that two young boys had to ask if we could possibly move up in our row to allow them two seats to sit together in. Even after we told them to go fuck themselves they really did struggle to find anywhere else. So although it is a shame that the film isn't able to explain every one of it's seventy-two main characters I think it's fair to assume that this franchise is popular enough that most people will probably know. Admittedly two girls near us did ask, “is Doctor Strange 'Tony'?” But I'm not sure that some exposition within the film would have helped them as they looked so thick that I was surprised it was pop-corn they were eating and not fucking sea-weed.

And speaking of the characters, it's worth noting that Thanos talks in the movie about 'balance' which is ironic because despite being his sole motivation, 'balance' is also the thing that the film itself has to battle the most against. Not only does it have to balance all of these main characters but it also has to balance the tone that they bring with them. Doctor Strange deserves as much attention as the Guardians Of The Galaxy but how do you make a film that features a pretentious wizard and a band of disco-loving space bastards? Not only that but Avengers: Infinity War pretty much needs to be a sequel to all of these movies too. So not only does it need to balance the characters and tones but it needs to pick up where all of those individual franchises left off and bring them into its own story with as little contrivance as possible. I know U2 are popular but the Marvel movies are popular and not total shite and so it'd be a shame to fuck all of that up now. It therefore seems that the film is able to balance all of these individual aspects by simply being an incredible fucking piece of work. I have no idea how one film can be a sequel to both Black Panther and Thor: Ragnarok but nor can I understand how something as kickable as a man's nut-sack can contain the ingredients for life.. and yet having seen the film, and as I sit here with my balls crushed between my legs, I simply have to accept the facts.

The tones of each character are blended perfectly by simply making the jarring nature of their differences the appeal of teaming them up. It's fun to see the tree-man Groot clash with the space God Thor in the same way that it's fun to see Trump meet other world leaders. Except in the movie the characters were more believable and I didn't start googling the odds of my own death whenever they'd all meet. The individual characters are balanced in terms of screen-time because the film works like clockwork. Spider-Man is as much a cog in the machine as Captain America with everybody working exclusively to serve the story, which is a strategy that has both its pros and cons. The pro is that no character is short-changed however the con is that I rarely felt caught up in an individuals own personal dilemma. Consider Stark's reaction to the final twists of Captain America: Civil War and remember that you were invested in that exclusively because of how the revelations made him feel. However here you don't really feel anything because of a character, but because of the overall story instead. There's a battle featuring several characters in Wakanda near the end and at no point did I really feel tension because of any one person but simply because I understood the importance of this sub-plot. It's kind of like being scared during Little Red Riding Hood not because you worry for her safety but because you simply understand the danger of going into the woods. Especially if you go to the woods near me where some fat bloke in a bikini has genuinely been chasing joggers every morning.

Now that I've hinted towards the third act, I can also feel those four people in the world that are yet to see the movie begin to panic. And understandably too because without giving anything away there are things that happen in this movie that you don't want spoilt for you before going in. I had no idea that Captain America's head was just going to fall off like that but I definitely didn't let it distract me from The Chuckle Brothers cameo in the final few seconds of the gay orgy scene. To talk a little more vaguely, I feel that the ending of this movie was absolutely incredible with one minor flaw.. I kind of didn't entirely accept it. Yet. I remember not being too bothered by Groot's death in Guardian's Of The Galaxy because I knew that there'd be a way to bring him back which seemed to be the case when Rocket then picked up a twig and grew Baby Groot. Except director James Gunn then pointed out afterwards that Groot did in fact die, Baby Groot is actually his son and now the end of that movie absolutely floors. Assuming that something terrible happens to somebody or some people at the end of this movie then rather than being upset that these things were or weren't taking place, I was simply curious as to how it all might be undone by the next movie. Which isn't to say I didn't enjoy the climax as a scene but rather that, like with James Gunn's Groot clarification, I feel like I need to wait until the next Avengers film explains the permanence of this current situation before I can fully invest in it. And if what I've just said here sounds like total waffle to you then let me know and I'll fight you because it's crystal fucking clear what I'm trying to say.

To contradict myself slightly though there is actually one character who I felt a certain amount of emotion for and that's Thanos himself. His plan is to wipe out almost half of all life and, as a giant misanthrope, I was already wishing for somebody to do the same in the noisy cinema screening I was in. Whereas most of the characters here exist to serve the story, he's actually the one person pushing it forwards, and so the cross-cutting final third probably works because we're following him stomp his way through it all. I actually found his journey throughout the final few seconds quite touching which is pretty impressive for a man that looks like somebody has stuck their genitals into an electric fan. I'm not saying that I felt sympathy, but rather after having endured as much of Trump as we have, it was nice to see a psychopathic leader with the capacity to think of what's best for somebody other than himself. It was also good to finally find out why Hawkeye has been absent from all of the marketing of this film which I've heard the directors say was because they had something “special” planned for him. Well having now seen it I can only assume that the 'special' thing is that they've fucking fired him because he's not in this movie at all. Overall though, Avengers: Infinity War is a monumental achievement. This is Marvel's The Two Towers and although its Return Of The King is only a year away, like an Amsterdam cock replica... that just seems too damn long! Thanks for reading motherfuckers and see you next time.

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