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“Captain Marvel” soars above expectations

The “Infinity War” follow-up excites through stunning action and fully-rounded characters.

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“Captain Marvel” soars above expectations

Jacob Allen, Freelance Writer

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Directors and indie darlings Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck faced a tough task following up “Avengers: Infinity War” with “Captain Marvel.” The post-credits scene of Nick Fury sending a message to Captain Marvel left fans wanting to know who exactly she is and how she will stack up against Thanos. Pair that with Thanos’s infamous snap and you have your fans heavily anticipating what is next. But before we get to see how Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel plays a part in Thanos’ demise, we are taken back to the ‘90s when Captain Marvel’s story begins.

UNCONVENTIONAL ORIGIN

The newest MCU installment opens with an amnesiac Captain Marvel waking up from a bad dream. Unsure of what it means she confronts her Kree captain, Yon-Rogg, played by Jude Law. The two journey on a mission along with an elite Kree task force in order to rescue an undercover agent from the Skrulls, a shapeshifting alien species who are enemies of the Kree. The mission results in Captain Marvel’s kidnapping and interrogation. Through the interrogation scene, we see her memories start to return, which sets up her journey to find out who she truly is.

Although the film gradually unravels this mystery, once it does, ”Captain Marvel” hits its stride and becomes fully focused. Until that point, the incredible cast carries the film. Larson embodies Captain Marvel with the same gravitas and energy as Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man. Samuel L. Jackson, who reprises his role as Nick Fury, gives his freshest take on the character through his younger and lively persona. Together the two make an iconic pair, using wit and sarcasm to encapsulate a buddy-cop theme. While Larson and Jackson are great, Ben Mendelsohn’s Skrull general Talos anchors the film. Mendelson brings depth to a Skrull that could easily be lost behind all of the makeup and becomes one of Marvel’s most memorable characters.

STUNNING ACTION

At first, the action is stripped down to chase scenes and fistfights, but ramps up as Captain Marvel learns to use her powers. One of main reasons why the MCU has kept its success is that it diversifies how it tells stories. They all follow the same formula, but are told in a different style. You have already seen Iron Man take to the skies while shooting laser beams out of his hands. So, to change it up, the filmmakers put Captain Marvel in space against a whole fleet of spaceships. This sequence is so visually stunning, it will make you say only one thing—“Thanos is screwed!”

Overall, the film stacks up against the other MCU origin stories. While Boden and Fleck may not have much experience with a big-scale blockbuster, the pair knows how to tell a story while focusing on its characters. You will leave the theater wanting more of Larson’s Captain Marvel.

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“Captain Marvel” soars above expectations