It was always going to be one of the biggest blockbusters of 2018. The hype around Infinity War began before a single shot had been captured on screen with a buzz in the media and from fans that is seldom seen.
• This review contains very little in way of spoilers.
For myself, the release of Infinity War was more than just the usual hype that surrounds a Marvel release. As a journalist working in Edinburgh and a fan of the franchise, I have spent a significant chunk of the last year writing about the upcoming film that was of course, partially filmed in the Capital.
Much of my 2017 was spent feeding off teaser snaps showing action on Cockburn Street and writing stories about fans in Edinburgh who met stars of the film. The buzz around the filming in the Capital was infectious, and undoubtedly added to my own excitement about the film. Having seen the latest release at 12:10am, I can honestly say that it is a film that lives up to the high expectations.
In fact, I will go further, it perfectly justifies everything that Marvel have been building towards in their past 18 films of the Avengers Universe. More minor characters are given a chance to shine, a villain who has been built up by the studio in post-credit scenes over the years lived up to the billing and it had a number of subtle nods that fans of the franchise would simply adore. Stars that have had perhaps just one film to tell their story and develop their character e.g. Dr Strange or The Incredible Hulk (who with Mark Ruffalo in the role has never had a film) gives fans the chance to get to know these lesser-known Avengers,
The strong storyline, scintillating action scenes and now-infamous Marvel jokes perfectly provide fans with what they have come to expect from the studio and add to a strong year following Blank Panther. And it is even more remarkable given the task the studio had when the first concept of Infinity Wars was drawn out. A significant cast with big name stars seamlessly intertwined and all prior concerns about how multiple story arcs would play out were soon a distant memory as the action got underway.
Edinburgh also shone in the film and it was a joy to see it on the big screen and part of the universe. It was surreal to see the Avengers ship fly over Waverley Station and Scarlet Witch walk past a chippy, but it was also, weirdly comforting. There was a familiarity about it all that truly made an impression on me and added to my enjoyment. As well as this, unlike some films from the Marvel Universe in the past that jump from location to location, the use of Edinburgh and other fictional locations later on did not seem too overbearing.
The ending of the film has been the target of the majority of criticism for reviewers but much like the Avengers did in Phase One of the Marvel Universe, for me, the ending served its purpose. Although some critics have been slightly harsh on the lengthy runtime of the film, and a few small parts perhaps could have been trimmed down, all in all, the film leaves you wanting more. I was not the only one who looked around the cinema when the first credit came up with an irked expression that the film had ended. The conclusion of the film does ask more questions for fans and sets up the franchise for the next stage of the story. Just like they did in the Avengers however, Marvel have struck gold again in blending a number of well-loved characters in an ensemble cast with apparent ease. And it is this masterful storytelling and pacing that for me shows that will ensure this film becomes one of the many fan favourites in the franchise.
Join our Facebook group Our Edinburgh to share images and news from and around the Capital
Know someone that makes a difference in our community? Nominate them for a Local Hero Award HERE