Warning, this post contains spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War so beware!
Now that the proverbial smoke has cleared on Thanos’ new universe and we had to watch some of our favorite heroes turn to dust, the most obvious questions are, “How will this be fixed?” and, “Why did they do this?” The directors, the Russo Brothers, seem to have calculated the effects this harsh of an ending would have, and they are pleased with the results, even though audiences don’t leave the theater feeling anything near pleased.
“It was always a plan to show beyond that because when we made the decision to have the snaps themselves, that’s a plot trick to cut to black after an incident like that happens, and it doesn’t give you any emotional resonance or catharsis,” Joe Russo said in an interview with Comicbook.com.
He continued to say, “What he said thinking about it realistically; the true heartbreak doesn’t lie in the fact that he snapped his fingers, it lies in the fact that people have to watch loved ones, and we have to watch characters that we care about die. And that’s where the real heartbreak lies for the characters who live in the Universe and for those of us watching the movie.”
The audiences certainly shared the heartbreak with the living characters like Tony Stark, Okoye, and Steve Rogers. However, as was said before the film released, this film was also meant to be a Thanos origin story, and his victory created the ending to his arc that the directors sought out for.
“We always knew that that would be the most profound or some of the most profound beats of the film. We wanted the story, Thanos, even though he’s the villain, to follow the traditional arc of hero beats. In that you have to follow through with what he did and carry him to the ending, self-satisfied, sitting on his porch, feeling the weight of what he’s done in order for him to have the completion. That’s how it wraps up for us and that’s why we say it’s a self-contained story and that there is an ending, it’s just not the ending that you’re used to. And Thanos, if you track all his major beats, they tell a complete story.”
In the end, however, the directors recognized the gravity of the choices they made in allowing Thanos to complete his arc and have his wildest dreams come to fruition, even if it was at the expense of the Avengers.
“We certainly knew that it was a difficult choice to make, but that’s what excited us about it,” Anthony Russo explained. “Joe and I, I think, we run at… when something makes you nervous or scared on a creative level it’s usually because there’s something really good there. So, we knew it was a complicated proposition, but it’s something that sounds good or exciting to us.”
There’s still another film to be shown, though. Infinity War may be a complete story in itself, but the Avengers still have the next film to try and make it right. Although right now we have no idea how that could possibly work, something has to happen in the next film, by definition!