“Avengers: Infinity War,” and “Avengers: Endgame": If you’re not in the loop, you would be forgiven for not knowing the difference between the two, or wondering how own earth these two movies could be released within a year of each other. The latter is this year’s iteration, continuing the Marvel saga and, if you’re a betting person, likely not the end of a saga that appears to be stretching on indefinitely. Of course each movie will have its own distinct plot, as did their predecessors, but one has to wonder: Is this really the best that Hollywood can do? Have producers, directors, actors, and everyone else run out of ideas? The answer, given the preponderance of evidence, is yes.
“Avengers: Infinity War” was not a bad movie by any stretch of the imagination. Prevailing opinion says that overproduction of such movies is what audiences want, especially given box office profit, and one could easily say that high-grossing movies justify continuing a series indefinitely. But what would audiences do if the series ended? Would people really stop going to the movies just because Hollywood execs (mercifully) decided to wrap up the series? That’s doubtful; like Noah’s ark, if you build it, they will come.
It’s not an issue of quality as much as it is of originality. Sure, the movies might be good, yet producing them at the expense of new scripts and hot takes stifles creativity and fails to push the boundaries of exciting cinema. The same can be said of this July’s upcoming second rendition of “The Lion King:” Yes, it stars Beyoncé and Donald Glover, and yes, it will probably be a good movie, but do we really need it? What need is it fulfilling other than taking the original story beyond the confines of animation? Even that need is a questionable one.
It’s an issue because it suggests laziness on the parts of Hollywood execs, and doesn’t encourage boundary-pushing in any way. Where should writers with new, interesting, and thought-provoking scripts turn to if Hollywood cannot be an outlet for them? Sure, they can find funding or support outside of Hollywood, but that could automatically limit their exposure, which merely entrenches the dichotomy between new, original work and high-grossing films. And while box office profits can be used as evidence for the claim that audiences don’t want originality, maybe consumers don’t really have a choice. Present new creative content, and let the chips fall where they may.