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Avengers: Endgame

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When Joe and Anthony Russo, directors of Avengers: Endgame, pleaded fans not to spoil the plot of the movie coming up to its release, they should have been more specific. They should have said: "Don't spoil the plot devices, please."

Because Endgame, as epic and well-structured as it can be, but doesn't really have a discernible story that could intrigue any sane person. It's so-called plot involves some scientific-sounding gibberish that kicks off a chase where heroes need to acquire MacGuffins, and of course it ends with a ginormous battle, where one side wins over the other. The end.

Where Endgame succeeds is in its characters. Not since Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy or Zack Snyder's Watchmen has a superhero flick been able to make the viewer care this much about the people behind the masks.

Sure, Marvel took its sweet time, building up these figures over a decade, but I would be a fool if I didn't appreciate some of the well-earned payoffs they get here. Perhaps introducing such a thin plot was the smart thing to do, since it allows the Russos to go back and forth between the most important characters in the universe, let them talk and feel, and also - and this is a rare occurrence in big-budget blockbusters - let the actors act.

This is all achieved by some brilliant juggling of balance on behalf of the Russos that pacifies shameless fan service - sometimes it feels like half of this movie's dialogue was assembled from other Marvel flicks - and real emotional stakes while cramming everything into a three-hour runtime in perfect measures. It might be reductive, it might be silly, but at this point it's a waste of time to make those arguments against any Marvel film.

If you haven't already seen Endgame, go and watch it, even if you're not a superfan. At least you won't feel left out of any conversations with your friends later.

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