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'Captain Marvel:' A Fanboy Reviews

Marvel's Most Controversial Film Yet

By Sam GamblePublished 5 years ago 4 min read

A not-so surprising amount of controversy has arisen out of this film, and it seems to be for the sake of causing controversy. I don't see the foundation for calling this movie terrible just because the main character is a woman, but I also understand that Brie Larson has been somewhat provoking it. Her moves are also understandable because these are conversations that need to be had for the world to progress. However, I'm not here to comment on it. I just want to review the film.

A Character Focus

Captain Marvel stars Brie Larson as the titular hero, as she goes on a galaxy-wide mission to bring a war to an end, along with uncovering the secrets of her forgotten past.

Amnesia as a set-up has been done before, however, the directors have made an interesting choice in the film, as it doesn't really tend to be used to deliberately hide plot information for the most part. Instead, most of the flashbacks are designated to helping her understand who she used to be, punctuating the action and space drama with more intimate character moments between her and a lifelong friend from Earth.

As a result, this is one of the more quieter films in the MCU, which I think helps slot it into the history of the world we've seen so far. This movie is set in the 90s, and so we, of course, see characters that we've already seen, namely Nick Fury and Agent Coulson, both de-aged with impressive and yet deeply unnerving CGI. Both actors do a good job, but whilst Fury is integral to the story, sharing a buddy-cop style relationship with Carol Danvers, Coulson is relegated to little more than fan service. Considering his continued appearance in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., it seems a shame to waste his return, especially considering his impact on the MCU films after his death.

A Movie of Three Parts

The first thing I came away thinking about this movie was the slightly choppy tone. It feels like three movies rolled into one. Starting out as a space opera on the Kree homeworld, and getting to know how "Vers," as she's known at the time, and her comrades. The two stand-outs are Jude Law as Yon-Rogg, and having both Djimon Honsou and Lee Pace reprising their roles from Guardians of the Galaxy. The two of them seem to be on the good side at the beginning of the film, leading many to believe that their villainous turn would factor into the movie, but as of the end (spoilers) that hasn't taken place. Maybe this will factor into a sequel down the line. From here, Vers is captured, escapes in the best action scene of the film, where her powers are severely limited, and drops down to Earth.

The second, and by far the most interesting, part of the film begins when Danvers crashes into a Blockbuster Video, and meets Nick Fury. From here, the film switches to a more buddy-cop style. This is the most "Marvel-y" section, with a few action sequences, but most of the enjoyment comes from the banter between Danvers and Fury. Speaking of the action sequences, I'm afraid to say that these are some of the lazier action sequences in the MCU so far. Quick cuts, lazy choreography, and with a lot of the actors not feeling driven by their character. With most of the films proceeding it, every single action sequence felt driven by character, as the Russo's have said they aim to do with every installment. This film, except for the ending 15 minutes, felt like action for action's sake.

The third part, wrapped up in a spoiler, turns into more of an extra-terrestrial political thriller. The villains throughout the film, to this point, have been the Skrulls—A race of aliens that possess shapeshifting capabilities, infiltrating planets by assuming the identities of other citizens. It's then revealed that the Skrulls they are up against are a group of refugees, simply looking for a home, and the Kree's have been targeting the Skrulls because... Well, it's never really explained. It all seems to be set up by the Supreme Intelligence, portrayed by Annette Benning; at least that's my takeaway. As the centre of all Kree intelligence, it's quite possible that this AI has gone rogue. However, this isn't answered in the movie, and instead culminates in Carol, now fully aware of who she was, breaking out of her Kree bonds, discovering her full powers, and defeating her former squad.

Oh, and the Tesseract was at play. A Kree, also Annette Benning, was designing a light speed engine for the Skrulls to escape and find a home. It's somewhat out of place, but works in the timeline. It just seems slightly shoehorned in.

A Summary

So a lot of the reviews are saying that this film falls flat, and whilst it isn't perfect, I think a lot of it stems from this film switching focus from action to character. It's so tightly focused around its central character that some of the essential elements that make a "Marvel" movie. The action is flat in places, and the humour is toned down somewhat, but Carol as a character is one of the deeper heroes in the universe currently. I don't see where other reviewers are saying she falls flat.

So whilst this isn't one of the more conventional Marvel movies, it is still an enjoyable character study, and very much leaves the door open not just for the character to appear in Avengers: Endgame. It will also carry the plot on from this point, and fill in the 20-something year gap between the end of this film and the post-credit scene.

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About the Creator

Sam Gamble

Film reviews, movie-making articles, and more. Follow a fanboy's journey in exploring pop culture and everything else around it.

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    Sam GambleWritten by Sam Gamble

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