REVIEW — “Captain Marvel”
The cat is my favorite Avenger
Captain Marvel is written by Geneva Robertson-Dworet, Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, directed by Boden and Flack, and stars Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Djimon Hounsou, Lee Pace, Lashana Lynch, Gemma Chan, Annette Bening, Clark Gregg, and Jude Law. It tells the story Captain Marvel, an alien Kree warrior who finds herself caught in the middle of a battle between her people and the Skrulls. With help from Nick Fury, she soon tries to uncover the secrets of her past while harnessing her powers to end the war. Captain Marvel is a fun, energetic origin story with exciting action and a fantastic performance from Brie Larson. Don’t listen to the internet, it’s a good one.
Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck are directing here and they do a fine job. They handle Carol Danvers with care and take a lot of time to craft her and develop her honestly as a character. Her story is an interesting, and at times daunting one, and they do a solid job making it easy and digestible. Even though they are clearly working within a fairly rigid formula, they’re still able to tell a compelling and emotionally resonate story, even if it doesn’t reach the heights of something like Guardians or Spider-Man. That being said, they lack any real voice or theme that they’re trying to communicate here. There’s no style or personality to the film and that was very disappointing to see. They don’t knock it out of the park, but they get the job done.
Geneva Robertson-Dworet, Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck penned the screenplay and unfortunately, this is probably the weakest aspect of the film. This is nowhere near as cliche as it could have been, but it’s still another Marvel movie. It pretty much hits all the beats you would expect from an origin story and there’s nothing too surprising here. There are a few aspects of the story that were fresh, but overall you’re getting what you paid for. There are also a considerable amount of very cheesy lines in the film, to the point where I audibly laughing at them. The dialogue can be very on the nose and incredibly obvious. Characters speak very intense lines that sum up their motivations a bit too often and it really hurt the film. For such a dynamic and important character, her write up was fairly basic.
Brie Larson stars here and as you’d expect, she crushes it. What a wonderful addition to the MCU she is. She brings such a great energy and attitude to the character, and while I can’t attest to how accurate her portrayal of Carol Danvers is, I can’t wait to see more of her. She’s gonna punch Thanos in the face and I cannot wait for it. Samuel L. Jackson also does a great job here and is clearly having a blast playing a younger version of the character he made iconic. It’s one of his best performances in years and I hope we see a Coulson and Fury buddy cop show. Ben Mendelsohn and Jude Law are also nice additions to the cast and I’m very happy they’ve found their way into the MCU. Goose The Cat knocks it out of the park and I hope he receives a nomination for his work here. The performances are probably the best aspect of the film and I am genuinely excited to see what comes next for Carol.
On a technical aspect, Captain Marvel is just as fantastic as you’d expect from Marvel. The CGI is genuinely incredible. There are big action sequences and they all look great, but the real star is the de-aging. The work on Nick Fury and Agent Coulson is scary good, mainly with Fury. It looks remarkably real, and I genuinely forgot that any work was done to Samuel L. Jackson. They keep getting better and better and if they keep it up, I’ll be convinced they’ve found the fountain of youth. The cinematography was flat and static, but that’s what you should expect from Marvel at this point. The score was actually a nice addition to the film and did a great job mixing Marvel’s classic theme with an authentic 90s sound. Everything here is efficiently done and at times can feel factory made, but that de-aging CGI is groundbreaking.
In short, Captain Marvel is a tried and true Marvel film. It’s light, funny, and a bit forgettable. 3/5