Nerdlocker Movie Review: Captain Marvel


It only took ten years and twenty movies to get here, but finally the lady superheroes of MARVEL get their time to shine. If only that Black Widow movie would get moving already it would be even better. Until then it’s all about Captain Marvel, the hopeful wrench in Thanos’ grand plan.

Small Rant: Bad Language Warning
Of course this wouldn’t be a MARVEL movie without its fair share of ridiculous controversy and when I say controversy I’m referring to the losers that give real nerds everywhere a bad name. These asshats see a woman in the lead role of a superhero movie as some kind of threat to their fragile male egos. Twenty movies isn’t enough representation? The ladies can’t get in on this? Get a fucking life. Seriously, if the idea of women superheroes bothers you, and does so enough to boycott and attempt to sabotage the film’s success you need to do some serious re-evaluating in your sad, pathetic life. A little perspective goes a long way, remember that when you’re angry for all the wrong reasons. Anyway, fuck anyone that has a problem with this movie for any reason having to do with females in the limelight of your precious comics. Right, the review…
End of Rant.

Her presence has been teased for a while and now, through Brie Larson, the Captain has landed, ready for duty. Set during the glorious 90’s, Captain Marvel is a story that may have familiar plot points but suffers no loss of charm and engaging visuals because of it. It’s familiar but is completely aware of it and either approaches the familiar from a fresh perspective or in a way that makes fun of what’s been done before, making the film itself in on the joke.

I think at this point most expect a daring, trippy adventure like Guardians of the Galaxy or Ant-Man, and while Captain Marvel is a worthy addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it plays it safer than most this far into the overall story of the Avengers. This story would have fit better in the beginning of it all, when Iron-Man and Captain America got their first adventures, before MARVEL really stretched its cinematic wings, braving the weird and lesser-known heroes. This all said, Captain Marvel is without question a damn good time in all the ways you hope a MARVEL movie will be. It sets up what this particular hero is capable of and what her personality could be like intertwined in the dynamics of an already established group of arrogant, prideful heroes. We love these heroes but there’s no denying their faults. This is what makes them fascinating and most importantly, despite their amazing abilities, relatable to ordinary scum like you and I.

Brie Larson brings a lightness to her character with hints of cockiness making her a potential fun rival for Mr. Arrogant himself, Tony Stark. However in the moments of her greatest darkness, Larson sheds the metaphorical armor for one of bare nerves allowing for those around her to harm or accept her, for better or worse, for who she is.

As a not so subtle jab at the fragile notion of women being lesser than, Carol (Captain Marvel) must fight back against those that have made her believe that the abilities she harnesses are gifts given to her, and because of this she must be unwaveringly grateful to those who simply tell her she should be. It is about her self-discovery in the face of great adversity, an adversity that has hidden itself as an ally of hers only trying to help, of course ulterior motives are afoot. Once she accepts the truth of her past, her future, ultimate powers and all, will come forth in a show of true awesomeness only Captain Marvel could unleash. She will discover the only obstacles in front of her are simply in her mind, all they need to fall is a swift shove and her enemies far and wide, beware.

I suppose the weaknesses of this film fall in the familiarity of it all. I said it doesn’t exactly hurt the film but I can’t deny it doesn’t exactly propel the movie into the same category as say Black Panther or Guardians of the Galaxy. These are movies that left behind the expected and made something all their own, demanding the pedestal they now stand on, just above the rest, something special. This is a small complaint though, we can’t expect every new MARVEL film to be a game changer in every way imaginable.

However like Black Panther in particular, Captain Marvel breaks down societal barriers opening up so many possibilities for amazing characters of all races and sexual orientations. This is a feminist movie for both men and women that want actual equality, not special treatment. But more than this I think it’s a message that women can, as simply as men, be absolute badass role models for everyone to admire.

This is a movie with a particular target audience simultaneously meant to capture everyone’s attention. It says to all the little girls out there that they are just as amazing as boys and it says to all adults, particularly men, that women can be people looked up to just as much as any male counterpart. I think its greatest message is one of simplicity; it’s a hero whose sexual orientation while important, should not be the ultimate takeaway. It should be that a hero saved the day, and it was damn fun to watch. It gives women everywhere someone to look up to but also opens up the possibility of one day going to a movie about a superhero whose genitals are not the main point of conversation, no matter what. Basically anyone can be that mythical savior of Earth, protecting us from larger-than-life villains bent on world domination and destruction. The conversation should be about who will win between hero and foe, the rest should be commonplace.

Captain Marvel is another win for MARVEL and I for one can’t wait to see what she does to ruin Thanos’ day. That should be something to see. If anything, this makes the case that Avengers: Endgame will be nothing short of fantastic, featuring flawed, complicated, fascinating characters with equally mesmerizing abilities. It makes the case that MARVEL movies are as strong as ever and the next decade of films should be a ton of fun.

PG-13 For: sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and brief suggestive language
Runtime: 124 minutes
After Credits Scene: Two
Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Starring: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Jude Law, Ben Mendelsohn, Annette Bening
Directed By: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck

Out of 5 Nerdskulls
Story: 3.5/ Acting: 4/ Directing: 4/ Visuals: 5
OVERALL: 4.5 Nerdskulls

Buy to Own: Yes

Check out the trailer below:

In case you hate to read, check out Brandon’s review of Captain Marvel:

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Chase Gifford

"Cinema is the most beautiful fraud in the world"-Jean-Luc Godard