Avengers: Endgame was a very important film as it left us all satisfied and gave Tony Stark the most fitting end a movie character could ever get. His story arc was brought to an end quite smoothly as in his final movie, Tony got to tie the knots upon every dangling thread in his life. He squashed his beef with his friend Steve Rogers, he got to live a retired life and raise a family on his eco-friendly farm. He solved time travel and managed to successfully bring Spider-Man & others back to life. But most importantly, he got closure from his father and was ready to make his final sacrifice.
Tony took a page out of Barton’s book. He got married to Pepper, built her a farm, and raised his daughter Morgan along with his wife. He lived the slow retired life for 5 years until Scott, Steve & Natasha gave him a visit and instilled a new hope bringing Peter back to existence. He finally solved time travel, something which he had previously tried to do, but failed. Then one thing led to another, and Tony & Steve ended up to the land of closure back in 1970.
The trip to 1970 turned out to be more crucial for the final act of the film than one would think. This trip actually inspired the final acts of Tony Stark and Steve Rogers in Endgame. Steve’s inspiration was more understandable as he saw Peggy once again, and all his love for her came crawling back. He just couldn’t have let go of Peggy knowing that he could have another shot at the life he didn’t get to live.
But it’d be a little complicated to understand how Tony’s meeting with his father played a role in his final snap. His relationship with his dad wasn’t the greatest. Back in Iron Man 2, Tony told Fury that his father was a “cold and calculating” man who never showed any affection. But in the same movie, Tony also saw an old video of Howard. This was the start of Tony seeing and understanding why his father couldn’t pay much attention to him. This video is what turned Tony’s resentment towards his father into forgiveness. Howard Stark said:
“Tony, you are too young to understand this right now, so I thought I would put it on film for you. I built this for you, and some day you’ll realize that it represents a whole lot more than just people’s inventions. It represents my life’s work. This is the key to the future. I’m limited by the technology of my time, but one day you’ll figure this out. And when you do, you will change the world. What is, and always will be, my greatest creation… is you.”
This video changed something in Tony. He started to look at world peace and its prevention as his goal. He invested his entire time on coming up with a way to get Earth ready for preventing itself against extra-terrestrial threats like Loki & Thanos. His work caused two major setbacks. First Ultron, and then in the Civil War (which led to Infinity War and the loss of life throughout the Universe). But then, he got back to work, and when he saw his father once again, he got to thank him and say his final goodbye which he couldn’t.
This was an older and wiser Tony Stark, who saw that his father was still spending time upon his work to make the world a better place at the time of his mom’s impending labour. This wiser Tony Stark didn’t get mad upon seeing his father prioritizing the safety of the country and the world rather than being home with his wife and the upcoming child who might need them. Tony understood this because he had been in his father’s shoes for quite a while. His work once almost led to him getting separated from Pepper. And at the point he hugged his father goodbye, he forgave him in his heart. The lines he quoted about the memory of his father hold a much deeper meaning:
“My old man, he never met a problem he couldn’t solve with a belt. I thought my dad was tough on me. And now, looking back, I just remember the good stuff, you know. He did drop the odd pearl.”
Seeing how Tony himself was able to forgive his father for having given his life to work than to him, Tony knew that his daughter would one day be able to forgive him for the same. Hence, Tony didn’t hesitate while making the snap. Doctor Strange gave him the clue, and he knew that it will only end with his sacrifice. He went all out on Thanos, reiterating his infamous catchphrase once again. And when Pepper told him that she and Morgan will be okay, he was finally at peace.
Talking about Morgan’s forgiveness, that’s what the deleted scene with Katherine Langford was all about. Right after snapping, Tony would’ve met the older version of his daughter who would’ve thanked him and forgave him. While the scene would’ve been quite meaningful, it didn’t really fit into the ending of the film as far as facing and run time was concerned. So, it got deleted.
Decoding the real meanings of the several scenes from the MCU only makes us fall in love with the franchise even more.