Critics Consensus

Avengers: Infinity War Is Certified Fresh

Plus, season 2 of The Handmaid's Tale is also Certified Fresh.

by | April 26, 2018 | Comments

This weekend at the movies, we’ve got a whole bunch of friends from work teaming up to prevent a powerful madman from bedazzling his glove (Avengers: Infinity War, starring Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans). What are the critics saying?

Avengers: Infinity War (2018) 84%

After a decade of increasingly interwoven narratives spread across 18 films — and a preposterous global box office total approaching $15 billion — it’s clear that the Marvel Cinematic Universe is not only arguably the most ambitious gambit a film studio has made in our lifetimes, it’s also one of the most wildly successful. It all comes to a head — sort of — in this weekend’s Avengers: Infinity War, which assembles an impressively crowded roster of Marvel’s mightiest heroes to do battle against Thanos, the big purple menace who’s been looming over the MCU horizon for years. So momentous is this conflict, in fact, that it’s destined to unravel over a pair of films: Infinity War is really just the official opening salvo, with the story set to finally conclude — more or less — with the next Avengers installment, scheduled for next May.

All of which to say that there’s an awful lot going on here — in terms of the galaxy-spanning storyline as well as the sheer logistics of wrangling the array of nested franchises that support the MCU — and there’s a lot on the line for Marvel, including Infinity War‘s eye-watering budget and the blockbuster reputation the whole saga has earned thus far. Expectations are incredibly high, and anything other than one of the year’s biggest hits is bound to be seen as a disappointment. It seems like a foregone conclusion that the Avengers (or whatever’s left of them at the end of the next movie) are destined to beat Thanos, but can they live up to their own hype?

The answer, according to critics, is “yeah, more or less.” While the reviews for Infinity War don’t rank among the most rapturous write-ups earned by an MCU outing, it’s still Certified Fresh in the high 80s — an impressive feat in and of itself for a movie that needs 156 minutes and an incredibly crowded canvas just to get viewers to the precipice of the main event. A number of reviews describe the sheer spectacle of it all as too much of a good thing, while others — as is pretty much par for the course with Marvel movies — point to the slick efficiency of the storytelling as further evidence that this is a cinematic universe built on formula instead of soul.

While those quibbles are worth noting, they’re minority objections among a critical consensus that presents Avengers: Infinity War as yet another solidly satisfying entry in a series of films that’s drawn on decades of comics history to build a cinematic empire unrivaled in its interconnected scope. All empires crumble eventually, and at some point, the MCU’s incredible hot streak is bound to cool. It isn’t happening this weekend, though — your local cineplex is going to be stuffed full of people out to see Avengers: Infinity War, and it’ll be taking its shiny Certified Fresh credentials all the way to the top of the box office.

What’s New on TV

The Handmaid's Tale: Season 2 (2018) 91%

Beautifully shot but dishearteningly relevant, The Handmaid’s Tale centers its sophomore season tightly around its compelling cast of characters, making room for broader social commentary through more intimate lenses.

Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

Tag Cloud

Showtime Podcast Trivia 45 discovery YouTube Premium period drama American Society of Cinematographers Hulu GIFs X-Men mutant serial killer TCM Countdown Quiz zombie New York Comic Con Pirates Lifetime 21st Century Fox science fiction Marathons Martial Arts Extras anime Walt Disney Pictures Starz Comedy Musicals blaxploitation Pixar Song of Ice and Fire Comics on TV Opinion Animation NYCC TBS Esquire Nat Geo Masterpiece ratings Music police drama medical drama HBO 007 Superheroe LGBTQ zombies The Arrangement Lucasfilm vampires El Rey talk show E3 Mary Tyler Moore Emmys Apple A&E cops Superheroes Sundance Disney Channel adventure Dark Horse Comics technology TV Land Toys Adult Swim Premiere Dates FX See It Skip It Universal crime thriller Cartoon Network FXX unscripted Shudder based on movie USA Network cinemax Trailer Thanksgiving USA MSNBC diversity Polls and Games Holidays transformers Sony Pictures Interview Reality Ellie Kemper 2016 Nominations finale streaming Super Bowl Netflix First Look Mindy Kaling FOX Tumblr Creative Arts Emmys Summer Star Trek BBC America Biopics Lionsgate dc Warner Bros. ABC Shondaland 24 frames historical drama Watching Series hist SDCC BBC Country Year in Review ESPN Valentine's Day DC Comics ITV cooking Horror Cosplay Logo Acorn TV boxoffice Winners PBS TCA 2017 Fall TV sitcom Infographic Disney Writers Guild of America dceu Bravo cults composers Rom-Com crossover jamie lee curtis Rocky History IFC Sneak Peek CMT Freeform Certified Fresh Set visit Best and Worst doctor who Awards Comic Book Sci-Fi Amazon robots DC streaming service BET APB Ovation dramedy thriller Schedule justice league Tomatazos Drama San Diego Comic-Con Spike Fantasy supernatural Star Wars Musical travel GoT AMC Red Carpet Food Network TCA Winter TV MTV Western Teen biography television Paramount Columbia Pictures war SXSW cats TIFF CBS psycho comiccon TNT 2017 crime Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Calendar what to watch Paramount Network CNN OWN DirecTV RT History CW Seed comic PaleyFest Oscars crime drama YouTube Red sports binge Character Guide Rock IFC Films DC Universe CBS All Access Photos Awards Tour Trophy Talk Syfy Ghostbusters WGN 20th Century Fox Comedy Central romance TV Action political drama E! The CW NBC TruTV aliens docudrama President 2015 YA spy thriller Britbox Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Christmas TLC Reality Competition singing competition Marvel Epix Grammys social media Sundance Now Spring TV Mystery politics Fox News harry potter golden globes VICE ABC Family VH1 Election National Geographic Video Games Crackle festivals SundanceTV Nickelodeon Box Office Kids & Family Pop GLAAD