'Avengers: Endgame' and That Apparent 'Saving Private Ryan' Reference

It seemed only fitting that Matt Damon, who co-starred in Steven Spielberg's 1998 war epic, also attended the premiere of the Marvel superhero film.
Photofest
Chris Evans as Steve Rogers in 2011's 'Captain America: The First Avenger' (left); Tom Hanks in 1988's 'Saving Private Ryan'

[This story contains spoilers for Avengers: Endgame.]

Avengers: Endgame pays homage to a number of films (such as The Big Lebowski and Back to the Future), and it seems as if the 1998 Steven Spielberg war epic Saving Private Ryan is among them. 

The instance in the recently released Marvel blockbuster is subtle and occurs during a highly surprising and emotional scene, but it is arguably one of the enduring moments in both the Russo brothers film and the Tom Hanks war drama. And it seems only fitting that Matt Damon, who was in the Saving Private Ryan scene, also attended the Endgame premiere (and he did have a cameo in 2017's Thor: Ragnarok).

To repeat the above warning, there are major Endgame spoilers ahead.

The seemingly shared moment happens toward the end of Endgame after the Avengers have undone Thanos' (Josh Brolin) snap and following Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) sacrificing himself.

Steve Rogers, aka Captain America (Chris Evans), is tasked with going back through time once more to return all the Infinity Stones to the moment before they were taken by the team in Endgame — only Rogers decides to change his own destiny by living out his life in his original timeline, which means he is a physically old man when he returns from his final mission.

Sam Wilson, aka Falcon (Anthony Mackie), notices Rogers is wearing a ring, clearly having been married. Wilson asks Rogers if he wants to tell him about that story. Rogers smiles, pauses and says, "No, I don't think so." But the audience assumes — and learns in the final shot — that he married the love of his life, Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell).

That back-and-forth mirrors a scene in Saving Private Ryan when Captain Miller (Hanks) is speaking with Pvt. Ryan (Damon) about their lives back home, a tender moment before they wage their final battle. 

Ryan tells Miller he can't see his deceased brothers' faces, even through he keeps trying to picture them. Miller tells him to not think of their faces, but in memory context. When he thinks of home, Miller says he pictures his wife pruning their rose bushes. 

After Ryan recalls the last night he and his brothers were all together before they reported for basic training, he asks Miller to tell him about his wife with the rose bushes. 

Miller responds, "No, that one I save just for me." 

Watch the Saving Private Ryan moment below.