Captain Marvel

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Here comes another “Poops & Praises”, a style of review where I just list what I liked (praises) and what I didn’t like (poops). Warning, there are mild spoilers ahead.

A brief description: With this origin story, we learn how Carol Danvers becomes one of the most powerful superheroes in the Marvel universe after getting mixed up in a war between two alien races.

Powerful heroines in a male-dominated genre are always welcome. And thankfully, Hollywood didn’t try to stick an unnecessary love interest in there. This is the 21st entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. If you aren’t experiencing superhero film fatigue yet, then good for you I guess.
This is also Nick Fury’s (Samuel L. Jackson) origin story. We get to see the younger, light-hearted side of Fury which adds a lot of humor. Also, that post-processing face de-aging actually looks pretty decent. Speaking of post-processing, why are Jude Law and Annette Benning’s characters the only non-blue-skinned Kree? Is it because only top-billed cast get to keep their skin color? I have many questions…
Brie Larson brings lots of spunk and charisma to the character of Carol Danvers, along with a distinct humanness that makes her feel a bit more relatable than the likes of other female superheroes (looking at you, Wonder Woman). The editing and pacing of dialogue feel off at times, and conversations between Carol and Nick are rushed and choppy, which don’t allow for them to show their characters fully.
Brie Larson also gets to punch a grandma in the face! Fighting sequences are shot with so much shaky camera that we can’t even see what’s going on half of the time.
There’s a lot of love for the 90’s on display, so if you like that era, expect a nostalgia trip. The writers chose the amnesia route, and amnesia as a plot device can feel cheap.
The Skrull, who start out as one-dimensional bad guys, actually strike an empathetic chord in the audience by the end. The design of the Skrull feels lazy. Almost like a mix between Nosferatu and a goblin. I understand the need to make the bad guys look bad, but can’t it be slightly more inventive?

“Captain Marvel” overall is entertaining and exciting to watch, yet disappointing at the same time. Ten years ago, this movie would’ve been considered great. Today, amongst the myriad of superhero films, you need to do a lot to transcend the genre, and this one just checks the usual boxes without going above and beyond.

★ ★ ★

Director: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck

Starring: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn

2019, PG-13, 123 min

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