Gabrielle’s review published on Letterboxd:
I know I said no more surprises, but I was really hoping to pull off one last one.
Unfortunately, this won't be the detailed, in-depth review this movie deserves, because I can't spoil anything here - and by spoiling I mean even hinting at the story. What I will say is that this isn't a normal movie. It's not. This is a cinematic event, and a historical one at it. They bring together the MCU's Infinity Saga to a massive culmination of beyond epic proportions, but also bold and smart storytelling that just grabs you and doesn't let go up until the very end.
I often see, especially here in letterboxd, people saying the MCU as a whole is "bland". "Bland" this, "bland" that. I think some people just literally don't know what this word means. For 11 years, they've been building this massive universe, developing these characters, with a level of quality movies in a row that's unprecedented in Hollywood history, and at this point these heroes are more than characters, and they're more than icons. They're friends. We've known them forever, and they don't even have to make an effort to make us like them now, we just already love them - which is why Infinity War could afford to shift its focus primarily to Thanos and work. This is a more character driven movie, and we get more invested than ever in our heroes so that by the time the climax arrives... It's not just the greatest superhero battle in history, but it has meaning.
I'm not going to even try to describe the final hour of this movie, because it is fucking indescribable. What I will say is that because of that thorough character work made over the course of those 21 movies, and the in-depth progression of such work during this film's first two hours, that final hour culminates into the most emotionally supercharged climax in blockbuster movie history. I've watched it twice now, and twice I cried at the same exact spots. Twice I laughed at the same spots. Twice I laughed and cried at the same time. Powered by that soul lifting emotional energy, the myth of the superhero has never been executed with as much grandiosity as it is in here, and there's one particular essential element of the hero mythos that many other films don't fully embrace and Endgame executes better than any other before it. I won't say which.
The direction is quite frankly worthy of applause alone. The way the Russos pulled something like this off demands your respect and admiration, because they could've failed at any given second of this, and they didn't. The action is the most exciting, creative and adrenaline-filled the MCU has ever had, the imagery coined by the cinematography and visual effects are beyond astonishing - even the 3D is highly immersive and well utilized -, but the cherry on top for me... was the music.
Oh. My. God. Alan Silvestri had already done a hauntingly beautiful job with his Avengers: Infinity War comeback, but this managed to top it. Without disclosing anything, there was one particular shot that shows something happening that honestly wouldn't be a big deal in most movies, but the way the camera moves, how the colors fill the frame, and especially the note the score goes for, made me instantly teary eyed. Besides that, they even addressed something that I always criticized about the MCU before: they didn't forsake the individual themes. I won't say which play here, but there were some throwbacks that got me completely by surprise, and especially if you're someone who pays attention to this like I do, it makes a huge difference.
I don't think I can say much more without going into spoiler territory. Go see this movie, because they couldn't have come up with a better ending to this lasting saga of this universe. It's bold, it's emotional, it's exciting, it's all kinds of heart-pumping and it's like nothing I've ever seen before. Not only the greatest achievement in superhero cinema, but one of the greatest achievements in the history of film, period - and it's crazy to think that such a huge cultural phenomenon started with three simple words eleven years ago: "I am Iron Man".
Once I think it's safer, I will do a more in-depth review that's not necessarily spoilery, but at least allows me to talk about the plot and character arcs in detail.