When it comes to Avengers: Infinity War vs. Avengers: Endgame, conventional wisdom says that Endgame is the victor. It’s the biggest box office hit of all time worldwide, and Endgame’s opening weekend of $357 million astonished even seasoned box office watchers.
But here’s the thing about conventional wisdom – it’s fun to break it. And some Marvel fans have done just that by declaring their somewhat unpopular opinion that Infinity War is the superior movie.
‘Endgame’ had a few ‘buts’
Almost no fan will tell you that Endgame isn’t a very good movie. Most fans agree that it impressively span a ton of plates to bring an 11 year, 22-film saga to a satisfying conclusion.
The loudest sound heard in many a movie theater last year was the roar that went up when Captain America picked up Thor’s hammer. And the quietest it got was when Tony Stark’s family and friends paid their final respects.
That said, a lot of “I loved it, but” arguments cropped up. Such as, “I loved it, but I wish they had done more with Captain Marvel.” Or “I loved it, but Captain America’s final choices are questionable.” And “I loved it, but did Black Widow really have to get such an abrupt goodbye?”
Screen Rant was one of many outlets that pitted the films against each other, pointing out five ways Endgame was better than Infinity War, and five ways it was actually worse. For instance, Endgame had better overall dramatic moments, but at the same time, everyone was talking about the ending of Infinity War for months that they didn’t with Endgame.
Why some fans prefer ‘Infinity War’
At least two Reddit threads are devoted to pointing out the superiority of Infinity War. In one thread, the topic starter argues that Thanos is a better villain in Infinity War, while Endgame leaned too heavily on fan service. As an action movie, Infinity War is tops, since it’s basically a series of elaborate battles. For all of Endgame’s emotional heft, one could argue it slowed down too often.
Another fan said, “Whenever this comes up, I like to say that Infinity War is a film and Endgame is an event, like a concert by your favorite band. Infinity War has a great plot, one of the best villains in the last couple decades, and a twist ending that left us on the edge of our seat. Endgame played all the hits and gave us an absolute thrill ride climax that had us cheering and screaming and clapping and jumping in our seats.”
A fan in a second thread said Infinity War is more self-contained than Endgame. Since Endgame is the second half of the story and is wrapping up so many threads, Infinity War works better as a standalone movie.
How do the Avengers movies compare with other franchises?
Other films haven’t always fared so well when it comes to wrapping up stories many years in the making. This happened to Star Wars at least twice. Many people view Return of the Jedi as the weakest film of the original trilogy, especially compared to the revered The Empire Strikes Back, but people often forget that Return of the Jedi made more money than Empire.
While the conclusion of the Skywalker saga is by no means a financial failure, The Rise of Skywalker will clearly be the lowest grossing of the sequel trilogy. While the movie didn’t seem to prompt as much anger as The Last Jedi, it has arguably prompted more disappointment. Many viewers will say JJ Abrams didn’t stick the landing. Few will accuse the Russo brothers of stumbling at the finish line.
Wherever one falls on the Infinity War vs. Endgame debate, fans will agree that the two films were a knockout one-two punch. However much people argue that Marvel movies are diminishing cinema, even detractors will admit that the achievement of Kevin Feige and his team is unprecedented.