Captain Marvel is an extraterrestrial Kree warrior who finds herself caught in the middle of an intergalactic battle between her people and the Skrulls. Living on Earth in 1995, she keeps having recurring memories of another life as U.S. Air Force pilot Carol Danvers. With help from Nick Fury, Captain Marvel tries to uncover the secrets of her past while harnessing her special superpowers to end the war with the evil Skrulls. – Marvel Studios
Captain Marvel is the 21st installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and perhaps the most controversial film released by Marvel Studios? I really don’t care about Brie’s comments or how people may or may not have misconstrued them—I just wanted to watch a movie in one of my favorite franchises, so that’s what I did. Moving on, the film was directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck and was also written by them and Geneva Robertson-Dworet.
This is a good movie. It’s fun, it’s enjoyable, it’s a Marvel movie. By no stretch of the imagination is Captain Marvel the best of the MCU (my top three are Thor: Ragnarok, Infinity War and The Winter Soldier) nor is it the worst. Captain Marvel is a solid middle of the road origin movie. In style of story Captain Marvel is more comparable to a Doctor Strange than a Spider-Man: Homecoming—I even put Captain Marvel just above Doctor Strange in my ranking of the MCU. which has not been updated as of yet.
Space. I love space, the Marvel movies need more space. Recently we’ve gotten more space in the movies with Infinity War, Ragnarok and now Captain Marvel before Guardians of the Galaxy were the only ones to show us space. Captain Marvel showed a bit of space but for the most part it was relatively earth based. We saw Hala, the super futuristic home-world of the Kree—cool looking place but we were only there for like five minutes. In conclusion I want more space in a future Captain Marvel installment.
On the bright side the space stuff looked really good. Overall this movie was good-looking and aesthetically appealing except for when Carol was wearing her helmet, she looked rubbery and fake and it took me out of the movie. On the other hand they seamlessly de-aged Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg twenty plus years and it was barely noticeable—granted both of them look great for their ages, the de-aging was impressive nonetheless. The Skrulls looked fantastic and I do believe they were mostly done through practical effects. Also in general the Skrulls were awesome, let’s get more Skrulls in the MCU, especially Ben Mendo—dude crushed it.
As mentioned above this is your standard Marvel origin story, so certain plot points have to happen in order to set the characters up for future films. Luckily, Marvel didn’t make another paint-by-numbers Iron Man, they shook things up a bit. We were thrown into the thick of it and gradually over the film more information was revealed to us—this was a less linear way of telling of the origin story. And I’d say overall that method worked, the story zagged when you thought it would zig and subverted some expectations so, I’d call that a success—there were actually some things I did not see coming.
What really made this movie was the humor and character chemistry—I’m sure you’re thinking “duh Will, it’s a Marvel movie. Of course there is humor,” and yeah you’re right but it was just really effective. Captain Marvel had a lot more dry humor than any of the other MCU movies and it was mostly delivered by Ben Mendelsohn. On the front of chemistry through, Sam Jackson and Brie Larson are perfect together, they bounce off of each other so well and had lots of fun little moments together. A third of the way through the movie Captain Marvel became a buddy cop movie with Nick Fury and Carol Danvers.
I really dug the aesthetic of the film, space and the 90’s—probably two of my favorite things. Seeing Blockbuster in the trailer and in the film, just warmed my heart. When I was a kid my mom would take me to Blockbuster just about every Friday to pick out movies to watch over the weekend—fond memories but I digress. The 90’s aren’t that much different from now but it was fun seeing flannels and dial-up computers back on the big scene. Like you’d expect from a Marvel movie, Captain Marvel is a good-looking movie. I did have some gripes with the CGI but I can understand why as they basically only had the mouth to work with. To add another negative into the mix, some of the fight scenes were shot way too close up and it was impossible to follow what was actually happening. With that being said there were two fights in particular that really stuck out to me in a good way. In one of them Captain Marvel had to fight her way through a slew of enemies with her hands inaccessible for the most part—this scene might actually be one of my faves in the MCU, though it’s more likely a recency bias making me think that. Another scene was set to Just a Girl by No Doubt—I’m always a sucker for action scenes set to music, think Guardians or Ragnarok.
Captain Marvel has a great cast including Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Clark Gregg, Ben Mendelsohn, Gemma Chan, Lee Pace, Jude Law and so much more. Unfortunately, Clark Gregg and basically every actor/actress playing a Kree were all squandered and criminally underused. It was great seeing Agent Coulson back in a Marvel movie but the dude only got like 10 minutes of screen time—a major bummer. The real standouts in this movie were Brie Larson, Sam Jackson and Ben Mendelsohn and that’s because they were the ones in the movie the most.
Brie Larson, some people are going to like her performance some are going to hate it. I liked it, she’s beautiful and a badass. She does smile in the movie but that doesn’t really matter does it. She plays Carol quite well—she’s goofy, awkward and over-confident. Brie Larson captured the spirit of the character. We all already know Sam kills it as Nick Fury but this Nick Fury isn’t so sure of himself and is a bit lost around aliens and super powered individuals but of course, he crushed. And last but not least Ben fucking Mendelsohn. I’ve been a fan of Mendo for a while now and seriously he is literally great in everything and Captain Marvel is no difference. He played the Skrull leader Talos—he was covered in makeup but he still made the character his own. Every second he was on screen he stole the show. He might just be the funniest character in the MCU. His comedic delivery is unparalleled.
Also here is a special shout out to the Goose, who was adorable, had a great relationship with Nick Fury and added some more comedy.
We are literally in the Endgame now. You don’t need to see Captain Marvel to be caught up for Endgame but come on, don’t be that guy. This movie was a blast and will make Endgame feel closer.
I give Captain Marvel an 8 out of 10, would watch again.
“It’s funny because objectively speaking you are quite handsome.”