About a decade after Iron Man first burst onto movie screens, the final Avengers film has closed off a massive chapter for the Marvel Cinematic Universe and it well and truly lives up to the hype.

Avengers: Endgame is the culmination of multiple franchises within the MCU and as such, had a lot of loose ends to tie up so its three-hour running time was fairly inevitable.

The good news is those three hours don't feel like as much of a marathon as you'd expect - at least not for long time fans.

For anyone else, Endgame is very much just another superhero film packed with action sequences, easter eggs and in jokes, and a whole lot strolling down memory lane.

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Make no mistake; this film very much panders to its loyal audience, but that's kind of the whole point. Endgame doesn't exist to be a great piece of cinema or win an Oscar, it exists to give fans what they want.

Oftentimes that means the writing is cheesy and on the nose, but Marvel does that self-aware playfulness so well it doesn't matter, delivering superhero moments and even the iconic "Avengers assemble" tagline to raucous applause and shouts from an enraptured audience.

Picking up after big-bad Thanos snapped his fingers and wiped out half of earth's population in Avengers: Infinity War, things get understandably emotional as what's left of our heroes struggle to move on.

But comedic relief is always at hand thanks to the likes of Thor (Chris Hemsworth) - who not only undergoes a drastic transformation but continues to champion the humour New Zealand's own Taika Waititi injected into the character - and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd), whose blissful ignorance is a breath of fresh air.

There are the odd moments which push the envelope a bit too far, like a certain girl power moment (you'll know it when you see it, trust me) which feels like Marvel shoe-horned it in to congratulate itself on its own diversity.

Captain Marvel (Brie Larson)'s presence also feels like misstep here as she's simply too powerful for the storyline - a bit of a fix-all that could, and should have ended this story far sooner. That issue is addressed, but in a way which kind of defeats the purpose.

That all said, the way the story wraps up and the twisted paths it takes to get to the end will have fans enthralled, and for the most part, where our heroes end up make for an ultimately fitting end - with one exception which I won't spoil just yet.

It was always a bit touch and go just how Marvel would recover from the events of Infinity War and wrap up the stories of beloved heroes which we've been following for years, but they've done an impressive job which will leave fans entirely satisfied.

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