Friday, April 05, 2019

Captain Marvel (2019)

I was recently in Portland, not to far from the last remaining Blockbuster Video.  I was tempted to make the trip over, but I was traveling with my parents to see family.  It was too far out of the way and I don’t think my parents would have wanted the side trip.  For me, it’s really more a curiosity.  It’s not so much that video stores came and went.  Nothing lasts forever.  Rather, it was more about the fact that it was still around.  What was it about the location that gave it that sort of staying power?

The only reason that I bring this up is that Captain Marvel uses Blockbuster and other icons of the 1990s as a backdrop to tell its story.  It starts out in the Kree Empire with Vers (pronounced with a long E) training.  She has full retrograde amnesia, leaving most of her memories beyond her reach.

She and her team are sent to recover an undercover operative, but that mission goes sideways.  Vers finds herself captured by the Krull, who attempt to probe her memory.  One thing leads to another and Vers finds herself stranded on Earth, with all manner of things not meant to last, like two-way pagers and Nick Fury without an eye patch.

This is the origin story where Vers finds out who she is and what’s going on all while trying to save the planet.  Yes, there’s danger and not everything is what it seems.  (The instant I saw the cat, I knew it was more than a cat and I’ve never read the comics.)

This is the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first female-led title.  I think there’s something about being second that steals the thunder a little bit.  Wonder Woman was epic.  Captain Marvel seemed a little less so.  Both featured strong women.  Both had amazing coming attractions.  Something about Captain Marvel seemed a little off, though.

Don’t get me wrong.  It was still a good movie.  It’s just that the movie seemed a little too grounded in nostalgia.  The soundtrack was straight out of the 1990s.  Someone my age is going to get a lot of it.  I don’t envy someone who has to explain to their children what a payphone is.  (“You see, you could put a quarter in and make a call to someone.  No, this was before cell phones.  Why are you looking at me like that?”)  Given that this is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, we know that Vers will show up again.  I’m just wondering what a second stand-alone movie would look like.

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