MARVELous Movie Review: Captain Marvel (2019)

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“Well, Thanos is fucked.”
Anjie J Han/ Twitter

Release: 8 March 2019
Rating: 12
Length: 2Hr 5min
About: 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.

The Good

  • Fury’s Benjamin Button trick. I don’t know how well it will hold up to repeated viewings, but I was very impressed with the CGI retro-aging of Samuel L Jackson. In fact, I loved Sam Jackson taking centre stage for an outing on the whole.
  • Brie Larson makes for a sound Captain Marvel and she works well with the script and story she’s given. Larson is able to balance the tone between conflict and humour really well. I’m looking forward to seeing what else she has to offer in the upcoming Endgame.
  • Ben Mendelsohn’s duel character of Talos and Keller.
    Mendelsohn has well established himself as a Hollywood ‘bad guy’ over the last few years. Without going into detail regarding his character’s impact on the plot, Mendelsohn seems to truly enjoy himself in the role. It was awesome to hear his native accent too.
  • The cat, Goose! Move over Groot, we’ve got a new cutie in the MCU. There’s the nice little nod to Top Gun with his naming and he gets added points for reducing Fury to baby talk.
  • 90s vibes; its good to see the 90s in cinematic form. From the costumes, settings and pop culture references its a comfortable setting that brings the fun. The best part is the use of music throughout the whole film. While still not on par with Guardians’ Awesome Mix, it gives it a good fight.

The Bad

  • Coulson’s Benjamin Button routine is not as flawless as Fury’s. Perhaps not as much money/time was spent on Clark Gregg’s youthful glow but it does stand out as a computer rendering.
  • Jude Law gives a good go as Veer’s mentor and he’d even be up in the category above if it wasn’t for the bloody trailers. Yet again, outsourcing the trailer production reveals plot points the film conceals from the audience. It throws off the intended story and takes away any shock factor the director intended.
  • 90s vibes- I feel old! When did the 90s become nostalgia?! I’m not ready to look back on the 90s as if it was 30 years ago. It was only last year we were freaking out about the Millenium Bug, and there’s nothing you can say that will change my mind.
  • Other than Coulson and Fury, it felt a little short on the Easter eggs. If a film is going to retcon an entire franchise, I’d like a little more connections; even just a nod to Stark Snr and Stark Industries would have been enough.

The Ugly

  • Another origin story. It’s old hat now and Spiderman has shown viewers that MCU is more than that. It feels too formulaic 10 years in and I’m really tired of the check-box approach to plotting.
  • The storytelling seemed clunky, messy and, at times, painfully slow- the first 40 minutes really needed a good editing. While I like its use of flashbacks, it felt a little bluff on a double bluff by the time Larson lands on Earth.
  • The comedy is as jarring as ever. This time it was a dick joke: do we really need Fury checking out the dead dudes junk and comparing sizes?! I laughed, don’t get me wrong. I laughed louder than anyone else, but it was hollow and cheap; leaving a bitter after taste.
  • As always, the film falls down when it comes to its villian/s. The motivation or even the origin of the ‘bad guys’ is rather unclear and is left somewhat unresolved; which doesn’t help this film fit within the MCU timeline as smoothly as we were assured it would.
  • The dedication- this being the first movie out since the great Lee’s passing, Marvel have something heartfelt for the franchise’s creator. It had me ugly crying

Final Thoughts

It’s not the amazing outing it could have been. While there’s things I know of Captain Marvel that could come into play when we come to sit down for Endgame in May, I’m not certain there was anything in this film that gave me hope that she’ll be the saviour audience’s say she’ll be.
What I will say, if a character is going to take the glory from any of the long standing Avengers, it better be that damn cat!

Have you seen it?
What did you think?
Let me know in the comments.

Love Han x

Marvelous Movie Reviews: Iron Man (2008)

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“Let’s face it, this is not the worst thing you’ve caught me doing.”

Tony Stark

Release: 8 May 2008
Rating: 12
Length: 2Hr 6min
About: A billionaire industrialist and genius inventor, Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), is conducting weapons tests overseas, but terrorists kidnap him to force him to build a devastating weapon. Instead, he builds an armored suit and upends his captors. Returning to America, Stark refines the suit and uses it to combat crime and terrorism.

First Thought

I was VERY hungover when I first ever watched this film. I missed a lot as I dipped in and out of sleep. Up until watching it to review the film for this new series, I considered it a rather disjointed mess of a film that I never wanted to see again. It didn’t help that each time I’ve watched it since has been because its been found on TV mid film.
I actually wasn’t looking forward to this watch and I’ve put it off all month.

The Good

  • While my poisoned brain did not appreciate the way this film opened, I loved it this viewing. Being thrown into the action can seem a little disorientating and certainly not something done often in cinema, but it’s a device used in many tv shows to great effect. Here it gives you a snap shot of who Tony Stark is, before finding out how he got himself into the situation.
  • It’s an economically told origin story. When I compare this to others, it would have been easy for the first 40 minutes to be stretched to the full 2 hours, leaving the remainder of the plot to a sequel movie. I’m so glad that didn’t happen.
  • The relationship between Stark and Yinsen is something I slept through the first time, and it’s the strength of the movie. It gives Stark his motivation to become ‘Iron Man’ and change the mission statement of Stark Industries. It’s sincere and emotive; I only wish there was a look back to him at some point. Perhaps there is and I missed it; this rewatch will answer that.
  • What a good bad guy. It’s the one thing I don’t think Marvel gets quite right in subsequent movies. No long-winded explanation as to why, no sob story to make him an anti-hero. Just pure greed. The moment in which Jeff Bridge’s Obadiah renders Stark vulnerable is really chilling and the most sinister scene of the whole franchise.

The Bad

  • It really bugs me that Yinsen lists off all the languages that The Ten Rings speak and the one they don’t, is English. Surly if your main aim is to hold a demographic to ransom, you learn to communicate with them. However, I do like the fact that the film gives us Yinsen to translate and eliminate the need for subtitles.
  • Not sure if it’s because I’m so used to his replacement, but I’m not a fan of Terrence Howard. He doesn’t seem to gel with the rest of the cast and his scenes with RDJnr fall a little flat for me.
  • While the CGI of the suit and its construction is some of the best in the franchise, I found the CGI during the ultimate showdown a little old and ropy.

The Ugly

  • Watching it now, it makes me realise that the franchise started on such a high. It set a tone and standard that I fear I am going to watch slowly degrade as I go through my re-watch.
  • There’s not enough Happy Hogan. I’m sure directing was time consuming and explains Jon Favreau’s presence being reduced to nothing more than a cameo, but I’m certainly looking forward to him having more screen time in later films.

Final Thoughts

I’m glad I gave the film a second chance. I’ve really been missing out with not giving this installment my full attention. Perhaps I would have been Team Stark outright when it came to Civil War had I really, properly, watched Stark’s humbling journey.

Next week in Phase One of the MCU rewatch is 2008’s The Incredible Hulk, which sees Edward Norton taking up the mantel of the Toxic Avenger.

Have a Marvelous week.
Love Han x