With Avengers: Endgame quickly approaching, fans of the MCU are waiting for the final piece to help the fallen heroes defeat Thanos. That piece comes in the form of Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel – an intergalactic badass with superhuman strength, speed, and the ability to shoot photon blast from her hands.
Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) story is set in 1995, 6 years after she went missing as a U.S Air Force fighter pilot. She lives on the Kree planet Hala with powers she isn’t sure how to use and she’s not exactly sure how she got them. She’s known as ‘Vers’ and is part of Starforce, lead by Yon-Rogg (Jude Law), an elite Kree military team fighting the Kree-Skrull War.
After Danvers is captured by one of the shape shifting Skrulls, she escapes and lands on Earth. On Earth, she’s greeted by Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson) and a young Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg). Together, Danvers and Fury try to find a woman from Danvers’ reoccurring dream. They believe she possesses something the Skrulls want and must get to her before they do. Danvers gets a little help along the way from her best friend Maria Rambeau (Lashana Lynch).
Captain Marvel is a lot of different movies rolled into one. Its part buddy-cop film, part space adventure, part Bourne Identity amnesia action film, and it serves as an origin story. Like most films that do a lot of different things, Captain Marvel does some things really well while other things suffer because the plot is overstuffed.
The Carol Danvers and Nick Fury buddy cop movie works really well. Danvers gets to be playful, likable, and endearing in a way that makes her character fun to be around. Her back and forth banters give a glimpse at how much fun it will be to see her interact with the other MCU characters. 1996 Nick Fury is a different Nick Fury than the one with the leather trench and black turtleneck introduced in Iron Man. The two of them are magical together onscreen. I’d watch an entire TV series based on the adventures of Captain Marvel and Nick Fury.
The space adventure/alien invasion film works because of Ben Mendelsohn. He’s fantastic as Talos the lead Skrull. He’s so much fun in every scene. The story makes great use of Mendelsohn’s comedic timing and they find fun ways to use the Skrull’s shape-shifting abilities.
It’s no surprise Brie Larson is perfect as Captain Marvel. She embodies everything you’d want in your superhero – brave, strong, and fierce. Larson took her Academy Award winning talent, poured it into a superhero, and created a fantastic portrayal of one of Marvel’s coolest characters. There’s a reoccurring commentary in the film that Danvers is “too emotional” at times. The best part is Larson’s facial expression and reactions whenever someone says that.
Captain Marvel suffers from what most MCU superhero intro movies suffer from. These films serve as origin stories and they’re also saddled with being part of a narrative story and having to lead into future MCU projects. Danvers’ amnesia storyline is packed with exposition because you need an established Captain Marvel before the big showdown in Endame. All of this information is necessary, but there’s a lot to tell and there’s only so much story you can tell in 2 hours.
Even with that plot taking on multiple tasks, Captain Marvel is a lot of fun. There’s a heavy exposition dump about Danvers and who she is during the first act. Once that’s out the way, the film gets a second wind and is lively, funny, and hilariously entertaining.
Captain Marvel is a great addition to the Marvel family. From her lovable smirk to her fierce fighting, Brie Larson embodies Captain Marvel the way Chris Evans embodies Captain America. This is a fun intro into the MCU. We’ll be seeing a lot more of Carol Danvers in the near future.