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) 85%

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) 89%

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

Martial Arts Emmys Mary poppins technology CNN Pride Month Disney Channel Nickelodeon New York Comic Con Chernobyl Calendar Drama crossover teaser tv talk crime Sneak Peek Oscars San Diego Comic-Con WGN Walt Disney Pictures Cartoon Network sports FX Anna Paquin Opinion travel TCA 2017 TNT USA Network 2017 Holidays Countdown crime thriller Character Guide TIFF streaming animated VH1 Acorn TV Extras PaleyFest Grammys Amazon Prime BBC ABC Shondaland LGBT Trivia theme song Chilling Adventures of Sabrina History Election GoT Superheroes Winter TV Lucasfilm doctor who CBS All Access Year in Review comiccon Video Games Disney HBO Max DirecTV Creative Arts Emmys SDCC AMC Vudu Shudder mockumentary binge what to watch quibi transformers A&E movies Masterpiece Film President National Geographic Amazon Ovation Elton John golden globes YA Lionsgate sitcom award winner E! jamie lee curtis RT History Warner Bros. DC streaming service Certified Fresh Apple Super Bowl First Look Cosplay Emmy Nominations DGA 21st Century Fox TCA ITV boxoffice Logo vampires 2015 RT21 true crime richard e. Grant Heroines zero dark thirty Paramount Network Showtime NYCC Interview historical drama miniseries Red Carpet Spike Country TCM VICE comic Valentine's Day MTV Ellie Kemper Mystery HBO BBC America Epix spy thriller supernatural Syfy toy story singing competition Comedy Esquire Awards CBS SundanceTV Stephen King Pirates natural history TruTV Fall TV Amazon Prime Video biography zombie Box Office Comics on TV adaptation Binge Guide dc Food Network DC Universe children's TV ghosts political drama Nat Geo Captain marvel Paramount crime drama Polls and Games Winners discovery Set visit Mary Poppins Returns facebook Ghostbusters ESPN NBC game show diversity Britbox Tumblr Marathons OWN cooking 007 medical drama nature Awards Tour Fantasy strong female leads 24 frames Trailer Photos Western docudrama Summer Starz Spectrum Originals Film Festival Marvel Dark Horse Comics Action Women's History Month elevated horror Mary Tyler Moore Comedy Central Reality Trophy Talk American Society of Cinematographers CMT 2019 Horror Pixar Hulu talk show Bravo festivals cats IFC Sony Pictures Star Trek Mudbound series APB green book Sci-Fi Teen Nominations Rock spider-man book unscripted ratings witnail Musicals 2018 Brie Larson dceu Fox News BET Rocketman GLAAD science fiction See It Skip It social media TV casting Quiz USA The Arrangement cops Pop YouTube Red Columbia Pictures television Song of Ice and Fire Schedule anthology politics robots cults period drama SXSW TLC harry potter Superheroe IFC Films Universal FOX Crackle ABC Family Christmas Best and Worst dragons Tarantino space Comic Book Rom-Com 45 Tomatazos Music Mindy Kaling aliens cars MSNBC Sundance Now Netflix Rocky Podcast X-Men TV Land Toys Infographic Thanksgiving El Rey Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt finale 20th Century Fox Star Wars YouTube Premium Adult Swim Pet Sematary TBS psycho justice league GIFs kids revenge Watching Series WarnerMedia The CW thriller MCU FXX mutant disaster Spring TV Disney streaming service Freeform Writers Guild of America romance police drama Animation spinoff PBS Black Mirror CW Seed Kids & Family Sundance adventure Lifetime dramedy psychological thriller based on movie zombies E3 anime DC Comics cinemax The Witch composers war Premiere Dates Reality Competition Family Musical blaxploitation Cannes 2016 serial killer sequel hist Biopics LGBTQ