After 10 years of lean, threadbare, Lilliputian tales, Marvel Studios has finally decided to go big.
The Anthony and Joe Russo directed film is expected to surpass "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" to become the second-highest domestic start of all time in the United States, according to tracking from Deadline. Some believe the movie may even reach a $275 million opening to beat current record holder "Star Wars The Force Awakens."
Arguably the best quality — and most vital asset — of the Marvel canon is its star-making (or at least star-expanding) power. And it's really the simple pleasure of seeing so many good actors together that makes "Infinity War" — an "Ocean's Eleven" in hyper drive — work.
The film stars Chris Pratt, Robert Downey Jr., Elizabeth Olsen, Zoe Saldana and countless of others. As reviews for the upcoming movie roll in, they are overwhelmingly positive.
"I love it… The delight of a movie like this is to see these characters interact with other characters that they haven’t before. And we get some crazy pairings here…'Avengers: Infinity War' feels like a really special event," Uproxx wrote.
USA Today said, "It could have been an unholy mess, but with directors Anthony and Joe Russo at the helm, Infinity War is instead a glorious, multilayered and clever comic-book adventure with loads of emotional stakes and a perfect foe for Earth’s mightiest heroes….It’s kind of a miracle but every personality in this super-smorgasbord gets at least one meaningful character moment — nobody gets left behind in the storytelling."
"With so many ingredients to stir into this overflowing pot, you have to hand it to the two experienced teams of Marvel collaborators who had a feel for how to pull this magnum opus off," wrote The Hollywood Reporter.
Variety said, "'Avengers: Infinity War' can, at times, make it feel like you’re at a birthday party where you got so many presents that you start to grow tired of opening them. But taken on its own piñata-of-fun terms, it’s sharp, fast-moving, and elegantly staged."
The screenplay, by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, spreads the heroes around in improvised groups that create some funny dynamics. The Guardians, who inject most of the life to "Infinity War," swoon for Hemsworth's one-eyed Thor. "He's like a pirate had a baby with an angel," says Dave Bautista's Drax. Many don't know each other, or the parameters of their shared "cinematic universe." ''There's an Ant-Man AND a Spider-Man?" remarks Mark Ruffalo's Bruce Banner, a.k.a. the Hulk.
"Avengers: Infinity War," a Walt Disney Co. release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for "intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action throughout, language and some crude references." Running time: 149 minutes. Two and a half stars out of four.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.