Captain Marvel (2019)

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It has been long awaited but Brie Larson finally makes her Marvel debut in this second prequel of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, after 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger.

Vers is a Kree warrior on the planet Hala who was found six years ago and has become a worthy fighter. However, she begins to have some dreams that has plagued her. The dreams revolve around her past but yet she doesn’t know anything about it. As the Supreme Intelligence sees her potential, Vers is able to join mentor Yon-Rogg and his team. Their mission is to find any member of the Skrulls, a shape-shifting race, and eliminate them. Caught in an ambush, Vers is abducted by Skrulls commander Talos, who was looking into her past in hopes to find something important. Vers escapes but ends up on Earth when she crash lands.

Her crash attracts the attention of a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, Nick Fury, who at first questions Vers and her reasoning to being on Earth. However, she learns that the Skrulls have infiltrated Earth and she plans to go after them. However, along the way to complete her mission, her memory begins to slowly come back to her and with Fury’s help, she intends to find out who she really is and how she became a Kree warrior. In the midst of her mission and remembering her past, a sudden twist of fate will change the life of this warrior forever.

Since the announcement was made in 2017, fans have been anticipating the arrival of Brie Larson as Captain Marvel and her alter ego Carol Danvers. Having finally arrived, the husband-wife duo of Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck do quite a nice job at collaborating to bring the character to life, bringing to mind a nostalgic era in the form of its 1990’s setting and soundtrack to the story about a warrior who slowly learns about who she really us and who she will become.

There are those who may feel that Larson may not be a good fit for the role of the superhero perhaps due to a more typecast in terms of her acting ability, which earned her an Oscar award for her performance in Room. However, it is that ability that allows her to suit the role well here as Vers, the human-Kree hybrid warrior who slowly attempts to remember her past due to her constant dreams. When she needs to, she can pull off that emotional range needed and when she needs to, she can kick some serious butt.

Using the great de-aging process via CGI, Samuel L. Jackson makes a triumphant return as a young Nick Fury. His chemistry with Larson is quite a highlight here as the two pull off that “mismatched partners” routine quite well throughout the film. Look out for Clark Gregg in de-aged form as rookie S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson, who makes the most of his limited screen time. Ben Mendelsohn is both menacing and if this can be believed, funny, at times as Skrull commander Talos, who can shapeshift and even pulls off an impressive job as S.H.I.E.L.D. director Keller, which is actually Mendelsohn sans make-up and straight up American accent where as Talos, he sticks to his natural Australian accent.

The film has a connection not only to the upcoming Avengers: Endgame, but another particular Marvel flick with a nostalgic style soundtrack. That film? 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy. The appearances of future Guardians villain Ronan is reprised by Lee Pace, who gets a limited but important part of the story along with Djimon Hounsou’s Korath. Annette Bening makes a surprise in the form of the Supreme Intelligence, the A.I. leader of the Kree who is Vers’ mentor, along with Jude Law’s Yon-Rogg. Lashana Lynch makes for some great support as Maria Rambeau, the best friend of the former Carol Danvers, who after six years is shocked to see her best friend re-emerge on Earth, let along still living.

Depending on your taste, Captain Marvel is not the best entry of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it still holds its own as a decent prequel that showcases Brie Larson’s range allowing her to take on the titular role in a great way that will help the Avengers in their upcoming adventure, Endgame.

WFG RATING: B+

A Marvel Studios production. Directors: Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck. Producer: Kevin Feige. Writers: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck, and Geneva Robertson-Dworet; story by Boden, Fleck, Robertson-Dworet, Meg LeFauve, and Nicole Perlman; based on the character created by Roy Thomas and Gene Colan. Cinematography: Ben Davis. Editing: Debbie Berman and Elliot Graham.

Cast: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Jude Law, Annette Bening, Lashana Lynch, Ben Mendelsohn, Djimon Hounsou, Gemma Chan, Clark Gregg, Rune Temte, Algenis Perez Soto, Lee Pace, Chuku Modu.

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