Story

Avengers: Infinity War opens with mass murderer Thanos (Josh Brolin) and his army of monstrous aliens, witches and wizards attacking a planet and killing half of the population. Thanos believes that by killing half of the universe’s population, one planet at a time, he’ll prevent starvation, poverty and the total depletion of the universe’s resources.

Thanos is on a quest to obtain the Infinity Stones, which are gems with cosmic powers like the ability to control time. If Thanos obtains all the Stones he’ll have the power to wipe out half of the universe’s population with a single thought. Standing in his way are a collection of the universe’s greatest superheroes. They include Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), The Hulk/Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), Captain America (Chris Evans), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Spider Man (Tom Holland), Dr Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), and the Guardians of the Galaxy – Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Mantis (Pom Klementieff), Drax (Dave Bautista), Groot (voice of Vin Diesel), Rocket (voice of Bradley Cooper) and Star Lord (Chris Pratt).

The Avengers and Guardians fight Thanos and his armies across several worlds, including Earth, in a bid to stop Thanos from getting all the Infinity Stones.

Themes

Genocide and mass murder; starvation and poverty; depletion of resources; personal sacrifice; killing a son or daughter; superheroes and superpowers

Violence

Avengers: Infinity War contains extended, intense sequences of violence and peril. The violence includes killing a son or daughter, torture, mass death and numerous dead bodies, the mass destruction of property, and some blood and gruesome images. For example:

  • Several spaceships attack a ship. The scene shows the wrecked remains of the ship with its floor littered with burning debris and dead bodies. A soldier stabs a dying man through the back with a spear, and we hear the sound. A giant alien carrying a man by the chest dumps him on the floor. The alien threatens to kill the man, saying that he’ll hand the man’s head to his brother if the man doesn’t give him what he wants. The alien then holds his fist against the man’s head, and burning light comes from a gem that the alien is wearing. It burns a hole in the man’s head, and we hear the man screaming.
  • Several scenes show stylised fighting including the use of weapons like swords, spears, axes and clubs. One scene in particular has an extended fight between several women with these weapons.
  • One extended scene shows the brutal torture of a main character. The man is suspended from the ceiling so his body is horizontal with the floor. Laser beams pierce various parts of the man’s body, and his facial expression suggests he’s in agony. In another torture scene, a female cyborg screams as she’s stretched on a rack.
  • In the aftermath of an alien invasion of a planet, soldiers herd thousands of civilians into a group. They separate a young girl from the group and make her face away. The soldiers shoot all the civilians in the group.
  • A man tries to stab an alien in the throat with a sword but fails. The alien grabs the man by the throat, lifts him into the air and snaps his neck to kill him.
  • In one scene, an alien drags his daughter to the edge of a cliff and hurls her off. She falls and we see her crumpled dead body at the bottom of the cliff. There is blood on her face and on the ground around her head. She’s dead.
  • A woman escapes from a torture chamber by freeing her hands and then breaking the neck of her jailer. We hear the sounds of bones breaking.
  • The movie’s final, intense, extended battle is between technologically advanced humans and an army of rabid, dog-like alien creatures that bite and claw their opponents and swarm over bodies. Cluster bombs are dropped on to the attacking creatures, incinerating thousands of them. Superheroes smash, club and stab the creatures, and a superhero rips the arm from an alien’s torso. Alien creatures charge towards a force-field dome and their bodies vaporise or burn, leaving bloody, wrecked flesh. During the battle, gigantic wheels like circular saws plough up the ground, drag people under and tear them up. There is a close-up of one woman being dragged under a wheel and shredded. Blue blood splatters over one superhero as an alien is shredded.

Content that may disturb children

Under 5
In addition to the violent scenes mentioned above, Avengers: Infinity War has some scenes that could scare or disturb children under five years. For example:

  • The appearances of many of the alien creatures might disturb younger children. Some look human but are giant sized. Some have unusually coloured skin or features and behave in a violent and unpredictable way. Some aliens have bird-like faces, and others have monstrous bodies and scary faces with protruding tusks. There are also swarms of savage, dog-like creatures.
  • A monstrous alien reaches through a worm hole that severs the alien’s arm as it closes. There’s a quick gruesome image of the severed arm as it drops onto the ground.
  • An alien uses cosmic powers to turn several attackers into stone blocks, which then fall apart. We see part of a face with a blinking eye.
  • A man wears an eye patch over his eye. He removes the eye patch to reveal a blackened hole. He pulls the socket open and pushes in a bionic eye.
  • A superhero stands in front of a beam of light that has the power of a sun. The flesh on the superhero’s face begins to blister and smoke until the beam is turned off. The superhero heals by himself and is unhurt.

From 5-8
Children in this age group will also be disturbed by the violent and disturbing scenes mentioned above.

From 8-13
Children in this age group will also be disturbed by the violent and disturbing scenes mentioned above.

Over 13
Younger children in this age group are also likely to be disturbed by some of the scenes mentioned above.

Sexual references

Avengers: Infinity War has some sexual references. For example:

  • A man talks about having a dream where he has to urinate and is struggling to remove his pants, and then he wakes up actually having to urinate.
  • A man asks if an explosive he’s placing on his belt is the ‘Blow off your junk kind’.
  • In jest, a raccoon tells a man that he should have washed a bionic eye before he inserted it into his eye socket because he had to hide it somewhere unclean.
  • A man tells a woman to stop massaging another man’s muscles.

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

Nothing of concern

Nudity and sexual activity

Avengers: Infinity War has some partial nudity and sexual activity. For example:

  • A man and woman kiss on the lips.
  • Women wear tight-fitting and revealing clothing.

Product placement

There is nothing of concern in Avengers: Infinity War but there are many toys associated with this movie franchise, which are likely to attract young children.

Coarse language

Avengers: Infinity War has some coarse language and name-calling. There’s also one offensive hand gesture.

Ideas to discuss with your children

Avengers: Infinity War is the darkest and most intense, violent and confronting Marvel movie to date. The movie is extremely fast paced and contains almost all the Marvel characters. You need a knowledge of previous Marvel movies to fully understand this very long movie.

The movie is aimed at adolescent and adult Marvel fans and is definitely not suitable for children. Parental guidance is strongly recommended for younger teenagers because of the many violent and disturbing scenes.

These are the main messages from this movie:

  • Threats to a population can be a powerful way to bring people together.
  • People with power can do what they want and dictate what is morally and socially acceptable, regardless of the consequences to others.

Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include:

  • cooperation for the greater good
  • equality – in this movie, women warriors and superheroes have as much intelligence, strength, fighting ability and courage as men.