Our new producer, Chris Perucich is the fanboy in the room, so I sent him in my place to review “Avengers: Infinity War”:
First off- Hey Shelli! I’m not a “fanboy.” I just happen to be aware of pop culture, OKAY? I like Fellini as much as I like The Flash.
Anyway, the majority of Marvel movies over the past 10+ years have led up to this particular conflict. Josh Brolin (underneath a ton of CGI, makeup and prosthetics) plays the cosmic ultra-villain Thanos. He witnessed his civilization collapse due to overpopulation. Now he’s taken it upon himself to fix the problem for a very busy universe by gaining the power to eliminate half of all life. This forces Earth’s and the galaxy’s mightiest heroes to work together and apart to stop his genocidal quest. Despite a massive ensemble to squeeze in, most of our favorites get a moment or two to shine. Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Gamora (Zoe Saldana) & Star Lord (Chris Pratt) seem to get the biggest spotlight while Spiderman (Tom Holland), The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) & Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) get some good lines and action. Since we already know our protagonists, the story relies on selling the threat from a credible villain. They pull it off. Brolin’s Thanos is a fascinating watch as he strives to complete his evil mission. There’s a whole lotta movie here and we’re in crisis mode for pretty much the full 2 ½ hours. However there’s enough breathing room for quick hits of Marvel Studio’s signature humor. The stakes are high throughout and you will leave shocked.
For a comic book movie… this gets 5 stars
“The House of Tomorrow"
A coming-of-ager based on the book by the same name. Oscar winner and 5-time Oscar nominee Ellen Burtsyn stars as a grandmother (and one-time lover of architect & visionary Buckminster Fuller) raising her teenage grandson in a geodesic dome museum. Nana hopes her grandson (Asa Butterfield of “Hugo” fame) will make the world a better place, following the teachings of Fuller. He’s totally on board ‘til he meets Jared, a chain-smoking teen with a heart transplant (Alex Wolff of “My Friend Dahmer”), who turns him on to punk music. Maude Apatow (daughter of Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann) plays Jared’s sister. Nick Offerman (“Gilmore Girls) plays their Bible-thumping single dad. You can wait on the DVD for this one, and while it’s not groundbreaking, it’s well-acted with solid performances and reiterates the power of music.