DC had their Wonder Woman in 2017. Two years later and Marvel Studios finally released their first female-led superhero movie. And it was at a perfect timing. Captain Marvel is the perfect tie-in between Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. The superhero is touted to be among the strongest in the universe and is a formidable foe for Thanos. So, with that much power, did she prove herself to be worthy of a standalone movie? Well, that’s what we are going to find out in a bit.
Last February 27, Marvel Studios invited The Little Binger and select members of the press to the exclusive screening of Captain Marvel at the Director’s Club at The Podium. I flew all the way from Makati and braved the rush hour traffic but I would do anything for a Marvel movie, or any movie for that matter. So, we were a few minutes from the screening and I felt the excitement in the air. The lights dimmed, the snacks were served, my legs were propped on the Director’s Club’s reclining chair, and the movie started rolling.
A Hero In The Making
Marvel Studios sure does love creating origin stories for every new major characters that they are introducing. And that makes sense! People are not aware of them that is why a standalone origin story should be told to a wider audience. Anne Bodeyn’s directorial take on the Marvel superhero, however, took a slightly different route. While all eyes are on Avengers: Endgame and how the franchise will continue from the aftermath of the snap, Captain Marvel did a throwback to 1995 where we met Carol Danvers in her early days as the titular superhero.
Before we continue, I have a confession to make, Bingers. I have limited knowledge about this superhero. I have read a handful of Marvel Comics but those titles rarely featured her. So, I came in to see the movie practically empty handed. I know about the iconic Kree-Skrull war and how they may have affected the events on Earth and that’s it. Going back, the movie started on the Kree planet Hala, where Danvers (Brie Larson) is part of the Starforce, a squad against an army of Skrulls. Other members are Minn-Erva (Gemma Chan), Korath (Djimon Honsou), and Yon Rogg (Jude Law). The movie established the Kree warriors’ strength early on by engaging them in a skirmish against the Skrulls. A mishap later and we’re now on Earth where history is made.
Fury, Coulson, and Goose
Most of the fun part in the movie happened on Earth. It was 1995 and the audiences were taken for an ultimate throwback. Bring out the plaid polos, VHS tapes, and payphones! Carol Danvers returned to Earth in 1995 with one difference, with her memory erased! But wait, don’t confuse this for a lost girl’s search for her true identity. While it may partly be true, Captain Marvel did more than just that.
The movie is partly an exploration of how she became Captain Marvel but mostly about her discovery of the essence of being a hero. In doing so, she met characters that we already know – Coulson (Clark Gregg) and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). The two of them were still in their early days in SHIELD and the Earth has not met that much heroes yet. This setting provided a fresh perspective on the MCU that we now know.
Captain Marvel is an essential piece in the greater scope of things in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. More than just an inspiration, she resonates with the modern times. While set in the 90’s, it explored themes that are relevant up to this day. That is up for you, Bingers, to explore. The film worked with rich material and a strong plot but the storytelling was a bit clunky. Despite this flaw, Captain Marvel is a triumph on its own. It is an origin story but most of all, it is a hero’s discovery of her humanity.
Director: Anne Bodeyn and Ryan Fleck
Cast: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Jude Law, Clark Gregg
Binge-level: 5 out of 5 stars