Marvel Studios and Disney are determined for Avengers: Endgame to snatch the crown from Avatar and become the highest grossing movie of all time. To that end, they’ve released a new version of the pic in theaters this weekend to some fanfare, billing it as containing cut scenes, a tribute to Stan Lee and (as Kevin Feige put it) “a few surprises.”
Well, with the new cut releasing tonight, the initial reactions are in, and they’re less than glowing. Redditor Rogueone29 chimed in on the release earlier today, laying out what’s in store for fans:
“Basically the first thing is a 2 min video w a thank you to Stan Lee and then there is a burning building scene of Hulk as a different introduction scene. It’s so bad because the CG isn’t finished on hulk so it’s hugely disappointing. The scene is quite good though. Lastly, there’s a Far from home preview that lasts for 45 secs and it sucks. Nothing rlly good. Just like an extra 25 secs on background footage of scenery before cutting to a trailer scene. Super short. Super disappointing.”
I have to agree, as this does sound pretty crappy. Particularly surprising is that Marvel Studios have apparently allowed the inclusion of a scene that clearly contains unfinished effects. Presumably, this cut sequence of the Hulk rescuing children from a burning building was once intended for the special features of the Blu-ray, but has now found an unexpected new home in the re-release.
Leaving aside the slightly unwholesome nature of crowbarring unfinished scenes into a film just to break an arbitrary record, I thought Hulk’s introduction in the original cut of Endgame was absolutely perfect as it was. The new supremely chillaxed-Hulk makes far more sense being introduced hanging out in a diner and being a good role model to his fans.
Similarly, the new Spider-Man: Far From Home scene doesn’t sound particularly interesting. The fact that it consists of something we’ve already seen in the trailers is bad enough, but we’ll be watching Far From Home for ourselves within a few days, so a sneak peek doesn’t hold the appeal it could have a few weeks ago.
Endgame is still somewhere around $35 million away from James Cameron’s 2010 blockbuster, so it’s going to take quite a bit of fan goodwill to return to theaters to push it over the line. But that might not even matter. After all, Disney owns both of these franchises and with the first Avatar sequel due out in December 2020, it’s likely that the original will see a limited re-release to remind audiences what they loved so much back at the start of the decade. If that proves even a modest success, we could see Avengers: Endgame once more bumped back down to second place.
My advice is just to ignore this silly showdown and wait for the home video release rather than paying for a theatre ticket to see a lesser cut.