Ever since Marvel first announced it’s very first female solo superhero movie, fans have been anxious to see what it would look like. And after years of anticipation, Captain Marvel is finally here.
We were fortunate enough to attend an early premiere before the movie hits the cinemas on it’s official premiere date on March 8th (significantly, as the date marks International Women’s Day as well), so we’re here to give you an honest review of the movie.
It’s difficult to explain what exactly is going on without spoiling a few major plots of the movie, so here’s just a brief spoiler-free intro.
Feel free to skip this if you feel more comfortable doing so.
What you need to know is that Brie Larson’s character (codenamed Vers) is a soldier, part of the Kree’s elite Starforce squad who are trained to handle missions for the Supreme Intelligence- an artificial intelligence system that rules their world. These warriors are trained to obey orders without question and to perform perfectly. Even though Vers is considered partially flawed because of her inability to keep her emotions in check during battle, she is still considered the most powerful weapon at disposal for the Kree, making her a vital part of all their missions.
But the thing about Vers is that she has a history, and her history isn’t with the Kree Empire. She often gets flashbacks of her former life, but she is too immersed into her new position with the Starforce to allow herself to think about it. That is, until she and her team members are ambushed on a mission against the Skrulls (another alien species that are at war with the Kree). She gets kidnapped and in the Skrulls attempt to get information from her, she finds out their goal and their target, which happens to collide with her past.
She ends up on Earth, and teams up with a S.H.I.E.L.D agent Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and an orange tabby named Goose (as expected, the ultimate scene-stealer in the entire movie) to find out more about the Skrulls target, and with that about her past. But while doing so, she encounters an unlikely victim of the war between the Kree and the Skrulls who makes her question many of the things she believes in.
What follows is the heart of the movie, probably not the plot that you’d expect (as it usually is with Marvel movies), but to get to the details we’ll have to leave you to purchase a ticket and go see what happens. You probably think you know what will happen, but we can almost guarantee you that you’re wrong.
As is the case with Marvel, we didn’t exactly get many of the things we expected. But does that make the movie worse? Absolutely not. Marvel is known for throwing curve balls at fans to keep us guessing, the best example of that being the latest Avengers movie- Infinity War.
While Captain Marvel didn’t have as many surprises to throw us off as Infinity War, you will be thrown a few curve balls while you’re watching it. The plot of the movie was brilliant and unexpected.
Also, the relationship between Vers and Nick Fury is a major part of the movie, and it’s their immediate chemistry that keeps everyone entertained. Keep in mind that this was set before agent Fury was the head of S.H.I.E.L.D., so he’s quite different from what we’re used to. He had two functioning eyes, for example. But the story of how he lost one of his eyes (as it was hinted in the Winter Soldier when he said he lost it due to trusting someone) is truly one of an unexpected betrayal.
Jackson’s portrayal of Nick’s personality before he was head of S.H.I.E.L.D. and his acting in this movie really show us why he’s a quality actor. We’ll let you see for yourself what this is all about, but who would’ve guessed that Fury is a cat person?
Two more significant relationships are between Carol and her old friend Maria Rambeau and her daughter Monica, and the relationship really is something precious.
If you’re a massive fan of visual effects, this film may be just a tiny bit disappointing.
But it’s all for a reason. Since it takes place in the late 80s and early 90s, the visual effects didn’t have as big of a role as in Ragnarok or Infinity War. If we were to compare them to any of the effects in the MCU, we’d have to give it to the Iron Man movies, with a bit of Guardians Of The Galaxy during the scenes in space (especially at the very beginning and end of the movie). However it was all perfectly balanced (as all things should be)- just enough visual effects for you to enjoy, but not enough to make you think you’re watching a movie set in the present or future.
And what about the initial reactions we experienced?
The general audience at the premiere was a nice mix of both men and women, and as we sat and waited for the mid-credit and post-credit scene, we were able to lay low to see the audience’s reaction to what they just saw. This part was interesting, because if you’ve been following the general commentary on social media about the expectations for this movie, you’ll know that many have labeled it as “feministic propaganda” for various reasons, which caused low ratings for the movie even before it was released. Without getting into all of that, we can safely say that this movie will please both the male and the female gender, should they decide to give it a go. You may be expecting that most of the movie is focused on female empowerment, and you would be both right and wrong. In her raw form Carol Denvers is portrayed as a fierce, determined, brave, intelligent, and witty character, dare we say a blend of Spider-man and Black Widow? The only hint at her gender being an “issue” is that her emotions get in the way of her battles, as we’ve mentioned. However, the emotions in question are anger and confusion, and what’s most important, these emotions don’t make her vulnerable, but more determined.
And while listening to the reactions of the audience in the cinema, it’s safe to conclude that the vast majority liked it. While we’re sure it wasn’t quite everyone’s cup of tea (haters gonna hate), we weren’t able to hear any negative comments about the film.
So, was this movie good? We’ll just say that at one point, a fully grown man stood up and unironically shouted “you go girl!” at Carol Denvers during one of the major fight scenes.
Now, allow us a moment to talk about the impact of this film.
There was a scene in the movie that really spoke volumes if you’d cared enough to listen. Pretty much every superhero movie has that one scene where the hero has internal struggles to get back up on their feet while facing an enemy. Iron Man as he struggled to get to the Arc Reactor after he was paralysed, Thor as he sacrificed himself to save his friends and the citizens of a small town, Spider-man as he was trapped under a collapsed building. It’s the essential hero moment.
For Carol Denvers, that hero moment happened as she hit the ground hard while battling with the enemy (who we won’t name, for spoiler-free purposes). She stayed on the ground for a while, and during that time in her head all that she could see was herself at various stages of her life, continuously falling down in failure. Whether it was as a little girl on a bicycle or a grown woman during training, she kept falling.
Fall. Fall. Fall. Every time.
However, what makes the scene amazing is the fact that they showed a very determined Carol get back on her feet. She picked herself up after every fall, and it’s what inspires her to rise above the circumstances and show everyone just what she’s capable of.
Now, imagine a little girl watching that scene. After watching hundreds of movies where little boys grow up to be heroes, there’s finally a little girl with scraped knees and messy hair who got up every time she fell down, and she was a hero too. This is what we believe to be one of the most essential scenes that every little girl has to see- a six year old girl, a thirteen year old girl, a fully grown woman- falling down many times, and getting back up every time. While we have no doubt that many little girls will be running around and pretending to be Captain Marvel (just as little boys pretend to be Superman), it’s nice to know that these girls will also witness this scene, and hopefully they’ll learn something from it and be empowered by it.
And that, dare we say, is why we need this diversity in superhero movies. Every little boy and little girl of all different backgrounds should have a superhero to look up to.
So, in conclusion, we highly recommend you go see this movie. Captain Marvel has met our standards set for Marvel, which are pretty high. It has all the factors of a good superhero movie, with determination and vulnerability of the main character being the driving force of it all.
So, from us it’s a five star rating. Tell us what you think over at CelebMix!