Captain Marvel ★★★★ ½ | Movie Review


Vers starts to remember details of a life she may have once led. Can she unlock the secrets in her head while trying to stop the invasion of C-53?


Midnight screening... what was I thinking? Somehow I managed to stay awake in the cinema (others didn't fare so well), but I went in pretty pumped up. Not so much for the film but the overall atmosphere of a Marvel first screening. There were over 100 tickets pre-booked, and the cinema was certainly very busy. There's something about the buzz of an audience that big. I did try and hold a couple of conversations while I was there, they were not successful due to my brain's impaired state.


Let me just get this out now... I enjoyed this movie, but I also didn't like it. I know,  what does that even mean? I'm going to waffle a bit and hopefully it'll become clear.

I don't have a lot of pre-knowledge about Captain Marvel, in fact, until the trailers started coming out I'd probably have asked if you meant Ms Marvel or Shazam. As always the similarities between characters and brand is a complete mess.

Brie Larson had some pretty big boots to fill as the MCU's first headlining female character. I feel a bit sorry for Black Widow to be honest, but this is probably a bit lighter than her offering would have been considering her background.

Watching the trailers for this I wasn't left wowed. Vers comes across as rather cocky and after seeing the film I don't think she needed to be that way. Part of me thinks that a difference actress would have played it better, but mainly I'm just happy that they didn't ruin it.

Samuel L. Jackson was a treat, but then when isn't he?! It was nice seeing this more light-hearted side of his character. It leaves us with a little gap in his history that makes me wonder what happened to him. As ever he's a great presence and shows us just a glimpse of what's to come (or rather what we've already seen) while still being funny.

Ben Mendelsohn has made a rather large splash over the last few years in big-ticket movies. Rogue One, Ready Player One, Robin Hood and now Captain Marvel. His character of Talos is comical and warm but I found it slightly strange hearing him with his normal accent. That seems even weirder when I write it down, I guess I'm just hardwired to expect most aliens to sound American! He's definitely my stand out actor in this, he handles the twists and turns of the story wonderfully and made for an incredible surprise. There was one moment with a terrible bit of script that made me cringe at the screen but everything else made up for it.

I probably need to say something about Jude Law, that something is going to be "meh". I'm not sure that I'm fuzzed by any of his roles historically, and this isn't really any different. He also suffered from a dubious bit of script near the end of the film that feels out of place, but I'll leave that one for you to contemplate on.

I know I've been a bit of a mix so far about Captain Marvel but there are a lot of things to like about this movie. In particular, Marvel have really nailed music on the head recently, Guardians Of The Galaxy (1 not 2) and Thor: Ragnarok being two of my favourites. There's that moment of joy when you hear those old tunes, a smile crept across my face for every one of them. It was a great selection and they fitted into place amongst the story so well.

Nostalgia value is high in this one. Ahh, Blockbuster, I do miss you. There are plenty of things to spot, I'm sure that someone has already created a bingo game to go along with it... or a drinking game, "cry into your drink uncontrollably when you see Stan Lee". We obviously knew he'd filmed some cameos before he moved on into his big ol' galaxy, it was lovely to see him smiling out at us. Not only was it a fun little cameo but Marvel also did something magical with those opening titles and it made me cry... don't judge me!! I didn't cry as much as I did during the credit tribute in Once Upon A Deadpool though.

I could keep waffling, I'm fully aware that I've gone on a lot longer than normal about this one. I'll try not to keep you too much longer.

Obviously they've used some artistic license with the characters from the comics, as they do. The Skrull minions are so close to the comics, I was a little dubious about them when they popped up but they're carbon copies. The main thing that I know they changed was Nick Fury's eye, this version is better than the comics. I'd be interested to know how SLJ felt about finally being able to play Fury with both his eyes.

De-aging was used again but with much heavier usage than we've seen before. It was a bold choice doing it on one of the main characters when he's got so much screen time but I'm glad they chose this over recasting him. There weren't any of the minor oddities that were visible during Ant-Man & The Wasp's use of it, it all looked quite natural. There's no denying that Coulson might be a little overdone but *squeeeeee* little Coulson is so adorable that I don't care!

I mentioned my issues with Vers in the trailers, that wasn't the only misgiving I had. There weren't as many as the "I'm never going to see this movie" crowd (you know you're going to see it, get ahold of yourselves) but there were a few.

We've been with this series for over 10 years, this film leads into the last film in the sequence... and now they're giving us a new character? That's what I have an issue with. Don't get me wrong, I like the idea that they're bringing in a female character to clear up the mess created by the (mainly) boy's club, it's art imitating life... I'm joking, partly... but I can't help feeling like this is more of a last minute add-on. Previous new additions have appeared in other films, they've been able to interact with characters. The whole way through we've been shown teamwork and camaraderie, and throwing Captain Marvel in at the last minute flies in the face of that. But if we'd had her around before this then we probably wouldn't have needed Endgame because there would have been no distractions from what needed to be done. (Before you start on me we see that for a fact, none of Thor and Starlord's nonsense.)

For all of my waffling about it feeling separate they have clearly tried to connect her to the existing MCU. There are links in there on multiple fronts which give you hints at other films, it's quite impressive that they managed to make this without it being filled with series continuity errors.

As my last parting comment I want to say that Goose was amazing. Sadly not so hot on the CGI, I did wonder at one point if he was going to jump up and dance Garfield-style at one point. Annoyingly I already knew some details about this fluffy character before seeing the film but it just left me with anticipation. I didn't think that Fury would be a cat person though.

What you should do

If you're a Marvel fan you're going to have to see it before Endgame, but quite frankly you should want to see it. You could skip it if you really want to... but do you want to risk it? No, I didn't think so.

REMEMBER: There are two credit scenes, one in the middle and one at the end.

Movie thing you wish you could take home

Of all the things I'd have to say Goose, that cute little floof would brighten my day as well as coming in handy for several reasons.