SPOILER ALERTS! Do NOT read if you haven’t seen Endgame.
By Russell Greer
Recently, I sat in the very back row of a megaplex movie theater and watched the newest (I can’t quite say “last” because we know Hollywood will continue to crank them out, whether we ask for them or not) Avengers movie. For three hours and one minute (the exact length of the movie, plus an additional fifteen minutes of trailers, which would make it 3 hours and 16 minutes), my eyes were transfixed upon the silver screen, watching Robert Downey Jr and co. do their thing, as my legs were cramped, I kept wanting to use the restroom and I had people sitting next to me, cough on me, which in turn caused me to cough. The film wasn’t a bad movie movie at all (which you probably gathered since Endgame currently holds a 95 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes — because, you know, the critics are never wrong), but my mind seemed to be caught up on the main premises of the movie: going back in time to reverse the snap of Thanos — or as they call it: “the decimation”.
Yes, the “Time Heist” was funny and entertaining, but I couldn’t wrap my head around their motivations. I get it: the Avengers were depressed because they failed. Hawkeye was pissed because his family vanished. Thor became a fat drunkard. Their motivations and grief were clear as to why they wanted to reverse the snap, but I mean: it just seemed odd because they all acted like they had never lost something before. And that’s what tripped me up with following a long with the story.
As we all know, two things are inevitable: death and taxes. (Tax levies suck, by the way). Keeping that in mind, it just seemed peculiar that a team of superheroes, who had caused countless deaths themselves (in the Battle of New York and the events in Age of Ultron, which is what created the conflict in Captain Amercia: Civil War), were so grieved by the snap victims. Had these people honestly never lost a loved one before? Not even a cat or a hamster? I had both of those pets die on me when I was a kid and it was pretty sad, but I soldiered on.
I mean: it just didn’t make sense. They avenged the deaths of the dust people within the first twenty minutes of the movie by finding Thanos and easily killing him. They fulfilled their namesake. They did their Avenger duty: to avenge. Learn from the traversity of the purple guy and rebuild, as it seemed that is what was going to happen when they impasssionately talk about moving on. I was honestly expecting the movie to roll end credits and the Russo brothers to pop up at the end, saying, “Joke’s on you. It was only a half hour movie — not 3 hours.” And I would have been fine with that. But killing Thanos wasn’t enough. They had to go back and reverse the snap. To me, not only was my mind boggled, but it was rather insulting. And here’s why: their actions inferred that the dust victims were more important than victims of other horrors.
Sure, it was a little heart-tugging when Peter evaporated, but I fail to see how his death was any worse than the victims of 9/11 or the victims of a school shooting. The world could have lived without a Spider-Man, as we saw that he could barely defeat a guy on a flying saucer in Homecoming. Personally, I think they should have reversed it to have Tobey Maguire, the original Spider-Man, replace Holland. No offense to our British Spidey, but he’s just slightly annoying — and not even American. What the heck. I thought he was born in New York?
And it’s not like the world couldn’t function. Half of 7 trillion is 3 trillion, according to Google.
So you still have plenty of people to keep the world running. It seemed like everything was OK — because Fortnite was still operational and Antman had a burrito.
But if you’re going back in time to save people, why not save everybody who has ever died from a bad, unfair situation?
The guy who got hit by a train? Bring him back.
The lady who choked on a chicken wing? Bring her back.
The guy whose house fell into a sinkhole? Bring him back.
The Holocaust victims? Bring them back.
Sandyhook and other school massacre victims? Bring them back.
9/11 victims? Bring them back.
Ah, but Captain A. and friends only opted to bring back those who dusted away all because…they missed them? That also brings up other complications. What if a person died as a result of somebody else being snapped away, e.g., being on an airliner and the pilot being dusted away? Would they be brought back? What if a person died on the same day as the dust victims, but they died of natural causes or they perished due to nothing concerning the snap? Would they be brought back? What if they died the day before or after?
Needless to say: it was frustrating to see the Avengers act like they’ve never lost a loved one before. I thought that’s what the hero business was all about? You win some; you lose some. Death of loved ones have contributed to the creation of some of the most classic and enduring superheroes. I guess not.
So much for character building.