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Sunday, March 10, 2019

Captain Marvel

Director: Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck Studio: Disney

Review: Captain Marvel

Marvel Cinematic Universe releases their first film featuring a female-lead character that will surpass the box-office revenue from several superhero films. MCU all started with 2008’s Iron Man and continues the timeline, telling stories of each of the Marvel characters before 2012’s the Avengers which later became an important setting. Like I said earlier, I’m a devotee to comic-book films but I can’t say all comic-books films are good like the mediocre “Iron Man 2” or “The Incredible Hulk.”

In “Captain Marvel,” Carol Danvers, a fighter pilot and a soon-to-be member of an elite Kree military unit called StarForce, becomes Captain Marvel after Earth encounters the biggest conflict between two alien planets.

As the story flows in the 1990s setting, “Captain Marvel” reaches a perfect height of bringing the action sequences and lovely performance of Brie Larson, who appeared in 2015’s Room for which she won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress and Kong: Skull Island, towards American audiences. Not only Larson, but I love how the filmmakers also use the Blockbuster Video setting as it seems to be more like flourishing back in time as one of company’s best franchise before the bankruptcy. It gives a similar taste and emotion as if Toys “R” Us are still around in the 1990s.

Back then, Blockbuster Video as well as Toys “R” Us were popular and still around until both companies went bankrupted. The only things people don’t have in 1990s are smart phones, iPads, and streaming services such as Netflix. These three don’t exist in their lively hoods when aging through 1980s and 1990s. Blockbuster and Toys “R” Us really delve deeply and heavily on childhoods.

I described the action sequences, the setting, and the character development of Larson as female “Captain America” as the entire course throughout the film serves as a familiarity of 2011’s “Captain America: The First Avenger.” I also admired on the direction from Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck as they take full commitment and dedication on helming this anticipating film with awesome stunts compared from seeing the trailer as well as the music from Pinar Toprak.

The main actor providing a supportive advices to is Jude Law who played as Yon-Rogg, Danvers’s mentor. The performance from Jude Law came out similarly like The Ancient One from 2016’s “Doctor Strange,” portrayed by Tilda Swinton. They both mentored the training protagonists but often made [somewhat] indirect threats toward their respective trainers. By the way, “Captain Marvel” is Jude Law’s first Marvel film while Robert Downey Jr., who played as 2009’s “Sherlock Holmes” in which Law co-starred with him, appeared as Iron Man starting in 2008.

Aside from Law, the supporting cast of Ben Mendelsohn, Djimon Hounsou, Lashana Lynch, Gemma Chan, and “Guardians of the Galaxy” actor Lee Pace who plays as Ronan the Accuser. What is more surprising as that I met Gemma Chan at the press screening of “Crazy Rich Asians,” co-starring with Constance Wu and Henry Goldings, and really enjoyed chatting with her and her performance to both “Crazy Rich Asians” and “Captain Marvel.”

Also returning are Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury in MCU, and Clark Gregg in which both are digitally-aged by the usage of CGI due to the 1990s setting. Recalling Gregg’s words from 2008’s Iron Man that the film “isn’t his first rodeo.” Gregg always pops and goes whatever the film served him. Although, the main question about Jackson’s Nick Fury role is ecstatic as the setting takes place before he loses an eye. And let’s not forget about the cameo appearance from the late Stan Lee as a heartwarming tribute.

The chemistry between Brie Larson and Samuel L. Jackson becomes and proves to be a greater reminiscent of Marty and Doc from “Back to the Future,” Marlin and Dory from “Finding Nemo,” and Dr. Alan Grant and Dr. Ellie Sattler from “Jurassic Park.”

As for everything, I can’t give out too much spoilers away but I will say this, “Captain Marvel” is a good movie for full-price of admission and maybe the easier, wise choice for a Spring Break movie outing. It’s not like a topsy-turvy environment or some kind of a crash-and-burn technique being orchestrated by filmmakers, it’s just a story that lives up the expectations for both teenagers and young adults.

Keep this in mind that Captain Marvel will return sooner in the forthcoming “Avengers: End Game” which is less than a month away (My answer is “End Game” will be in late April 2019 to be exact). Running time: 125 minutes

(Review by Henry Pham)

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