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Avengers: Endgame Certified Fresh On Rotten Tomatoes

It's official: People love Avengers: Endgame

The superhero movie event of the year has yet to officially touch down in theaters, but following its world premiere in Los Angeles earlier this week, Marvel Studios lifted the review embargo and critics who saw Endgame in pre-release screenings raced to post their thoughts about it all. Just a few hours after reviews for Endgame went live, Rotten Tomatoes announced that the film earned Certified Fresh status.

At the time Rotten Tomatoes broke the news, around 10:30 PM ET on Tuesday, April 23, Avengers: Endgame sat at a 98 percent approval rating based on 85 reviews. As of this writing, roughly 12 hours later, 118 reviews are accounted for and the film boasts a 97 percent score from critics. Rotten Tomatoes will open up fan reactions as soon as Endgame debuts. 

On the review aggregator site, films and television series land the Certified Fresh distinction when their Tomatometer score reaches 75 percent or higher and at least five Top Critics (generally reviewers who write for national or international newspapers, or well-known print or digital publications) have submitted reviews for the work. Films that launch in wide releases must have 80 or more reviews in before they can achieve Certified Fresh standing, while those screening in limited releases are required to have 40 or more reviews lodged. Furthermore, movies and series don't automatically receive Certified Fresh as soon as the requirements are met. Rotten Tomatoes details that the media in question is immediately marked for the site's staff to look over, and if the team can verify that it's unlikely "the score will drop below the minimum requirements," then they will stamp is as it Certified Fresh. 

In some cases, a film can retain its Certified Fresh mark even if the approval score decreases a few points in the time after the Rotten Tomatoes staff grants it the distinction. That happened with Iron Man 2, which is still Certified Fresh despite rocking a 73 percent score on the site.

All this considered, Avengers: Endgame scooping up a Certified Fresh distinction on Rotten Tomatoes less than 24 hours after reviews started rolling out — and a few days ahead of the film's theatrical debut in the U.S. and Canada — is quite the accomplishment. It's not terribly shocking, though, for a few reasons. The first is that die-hard Marvel fans and casual moviegoers alike have been frothing at the mouth to see Avengers: Endgame, so of course reviews were probably going to be incredible. Secondly, nearly single film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has nabbed the Certified Fresh merit; the only two films that haven't are Thor: The Dark World and The Incredible Hulk, both of which sit at 67 percent. 

The critical consensus for Avengers: Endgame applauds it as "exciting, entertaining, and emotionally impactful" — a momentous bookend that "does whatever it takes to deliver a satisfying finale to Marvel's epic Infinity Saga." Of the 118 reviews currently up on Rotten Tomatoes, only four are "rotten" (lower than 60 percent). The majority of critics were swept up in the excitement, the action, the surprising humor and the expected heart, and the film's overall feeling of being a "love letter" to Marvel fans and the entire MCU — and there's a good chance you will adore it as well. 

Just take what Mark Daniell of The Toronto Sun wrote as evidence that Endgame will knock your socks clean off your feet: "Marvel fans rejoice. There will be more than a few sniffles rippling through the audience when you go see Avengers: Endgame, but surely some of those tears will be tinged with joy because what you will have just witnessed is unprecedented in the annals of comic book movies. The final chapter in an interconnected series of stories that Marvel Studios has been weaving together since 2008, across 22 movies, is the greatest superhero movie ever made ... We haven't seen anything like this before in franchise movie-making. One can only hope that the next 10 years of Marvel storytelling — which will feature new heroes and villains — comes close to this."

Fans can arrive at their own conclusions about Avengers: Endgame when the film hits theaters this Friday, April 26.