Sunday, March 10, 2019

Captain Marvel

Movie Name: Captain Marvel
Year of Release: 2019
Director: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Starring: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Jude Law, Annette Bening, Ben Mendelsohn, Lashana Lynch, Clark Gregg, Rune Temte, Gemma Chan, Djimon Hounsou, Lee Pace, Chuku Modu, Akira Akbar, Algenis Perez Soto, Matthew Maher
Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 5 
View Trailer

Synopsis and Review:
2019 is still fresh but this is the first comic book adaptation of the year. The film follows the story of Captain Marvel or Carol Danvers, a young pilot, whom when the narrative starts, we encounter in an alien planet, battling what she initially thinks is an enemy species. When her mission goes awry, Carol gets sequestered and put through an interrogation process that forces her to probe deeper into her past, something she does not recall. When she manages to escape, she finds herself on Earth, and on the trail of the same species who tried to get that information from her. She becomes acquainted with Nick Fury, an agent for a special division, who becomes her much needed helper, as she starts tracing her past, in the hopes of solving the riddle of who she is, but also why the alien species have such an interest on Earth. What she uncovers forces her to re-equate everything she went through in the more recent years of her existence. 
Marvel and their extremely well oiled production machine have decided, yet again, to court some interesting talent to helm the first feature on their cannon to focus on a female driven story. Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck who made a name for themselves with "Half Nelson" back in 2006 were the interesting choice to tackle this origin story. The film touches on many points similar to all origin stories, namely understanding the background of the lead character, in this case in particular, how Carol's perseverance, endurance and strength came about. What is interesting about how this story is tackled, is the fact that the writers decided to make this process of unveiling the character, a discovery/detective one of sorts, which works both for the character and for the audience. We learn about her challenges and path in life, much like herself, through the unveiling of her memories. Sadly though, the film doesn't really provide enough of an actual antagonism (or even much of an arc) to warrant this as a particularly memorable feature. The story tries to explain itself on more than one occasion, though ultimately it feels underdeveloped (much like most of the supporting characters). Brie Larson easily carries the film on her shoulders, with an ease and comfort that are quite surprising and charming. There's an authority, resilience and humor that emanates from her, that really make the character quite endearing. Her rapport with Samuel L. Jackson is also quite fantastic, the same being said for Annette Bening and Jude Law. It's a somewhat entertaining film, filled with pacing and writing issues. Here's hoping the creative team can learn and finesse this character's next adventures.