I’m going to keep this brief.
Captain Marvel opens to the titular heroine (known as “Vers”) as she awakens from a nightmare of a previous battle. She consults her Starforce commander, Yon-Rogg for guidance. He, in turn , directs her to the Supreme Intelligence – the overseer, of sorts, of their homeworld. However, neither can offer her guidance in reference to the dream and her missing memories prior to it. Being defenders of their Kree homeworld, Hala, the star force are deployed for an OP in the long running war between the Kree and the shapeshifting Skrulls. The OP goes south, Vers is captured and her memories are probed for information, specifically those surrounding the battle that haunts her dreams. Their ship, however, ends up crashing on planet C-53 (what you and I like to call Earth) bringing the skrull/kree war to the planet. Now Nick Fury and Vers must figure out what the Skrulls want before the pursuing members of the wrecked crew finds them.
Captain Marvel feels a little like MCU: Origins. Captain Marvel is an origin film, so Captain Marvel is prominent, but does feel like it’s also pulling double duty. With its continuity hooks in the periphery and presence of a younger Nick Fury, it’s a look at Shield and its first steps towards it becoming the organization we know in the present MCU.
Captain Marvel, is kind of a WYSIWYG character. Everything, short of her backstory, is on display from the get go. Carol is headstrong in the face of opposition and mission focused as a soldier, but also fun-loving and somewhat confused about her history – not that learning it changes all that much about her. Carol’s character arc is that of reaffirming what she already was – Captain Marvel channeling (fully) all of the aspects of Carol Danvers that made her successful to begin with.
A lot of the fun comes from the lowkey buddy cop thing Carol and Agent Fury have. Watching these two go on their adventure figuring out who Carol is and how Earth fits into all of this was great, but it felt odd how underutilized Agent Coulson and some of the other characters are. But for what it’s worth, the core ensemble that forms by the end of the second act is a solid team that’s a blast to see in action.
It’s a Marvel film, and an origin film no less. So you essentially know what you’re getting. High production values, flashy big scale fights and tie-ins to the greater silver screen mythos.
But moving on to some politics. You can feel the feminist aura wafting off of the film. But it’s the most unassuming, inoffensive tenets of feminism ever – the pragmatic feminist credo of “Don’t let anyone tell you you can’t do something worthwhile since you’re a girl because you very much can”. Most controversy about this is likely lasting sentiment from previous Brie Larson comments and some fan’s feelings about how Marvel itself handled the comic counterpart.
Furthermore, I feel Captain Marvel got cheated a little. Everyone else has had multiple movies to change and grow, but poor Carol is given half a movie and now has to stand next to more developed characters just a few months before Endgame.
Someone said this feels like a phase 1 movie. I can no longer say I have any recollection of what that feels like, but I’m hard pressed to disagree. It feels like they’re trying to level up a new weapon halfway through the game. But whatever, Dr Strange did the same, getting his origin movie then showing up in Infinity War and that worked out fine, I guess.
But despite those complaints, the movie’s still fun. Carol throws down with an old lady (the scene that made want to watch the movie in the first place) and it’s glorious. I watched that part in the trailer like “HOLY SHIT, SHE JUST PUNCHED THE FUCK OUT OF THAT OLD LADY! GET REKT, BEATRICE!”. She also beats up some bad guys to the tune of “Just a Girl”. This movie is FUUUUNNNNN.
It isn’t a bad movie. It’s fun. Just not fun in the same way that Captain America Movie #3, Iron Man Movie #3 or Spiderman movie #6 is.