Oh, Carol Danvers. Where have you been all my life…or at least the surprisingly large portion of it consumed with Marvel movies?
For the record, Captain Marvel does a respectable job answering that question for all of those wondering why Nick Fury didn’t page her when the Chitauri invaded New York.
Complete with an inventive and touching tribute to Stan Lee (that I know the hardcore fan boys will roll their eyes over, but give the guy some love already) this movie served to deliver everything it needed to.
Was it as good as Captain America: The First Avenger? No.
Was it as captivating and imaginative an origin story as Black Panther? No.
Did it meet the bar that Wonder Woman set for a female superhero movie? No. (And I know that’s a different universe, but Marvel shamefully to date has not provided another female-led movie for me to compare it to.)
So what did it do? It managed to give us yet another Marvel superhero origin story that absolutely refused to be predictable or boring. After so many, that’s a feat unto itself.
It also successfully helped bridge the gap in the MCU between Earth and The Guardians. In that regard, I would say it was far more successful than Doctor Strange, which I think tried to do the same to some extent with Earth and the magic associated with Asgard.
Also, it wasn’t boilerplate. Carol Danvers wasn’t some spunky, enhanced hero with a chip on her shoulder bent on proving herself or triumphing over personal tragedy. In fact, one of the best lines in the movie plainly stated exactly the opposite. Don’t get me wrong, she had personal tragedy; she just moved on and that might have been the most heroic thing about her, if not certainly the thing that separates her from the Avengers pack. I think this ability, more than photon bursts and flight, is what is really going to define her as the strongest, yay, mightiest Avenger.
Not to mention that it also gave me the distinct impression that Thanos is about to have his ass handed to him on a silver platter.
My only complaint about the movie was (past tense) that I didn’t feel as though I got to know Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers as well as the other Avengers in their first solo outings. This was really bothering me until my husband pointed out that because she had (mild spoiler) amnesia she didn’t know herself until the end of the film and that’s when it clicked how great this movie was. Because of her memory loss the audience gets to discover who she is along with her and that is a brilliant, fresh spin on the otherwise tired superhero origin-story schtick. Trust me when I say that by the end of the movie, both she and the audience is simultaneously made fully aware of exactly who she is, what she can do and who she is fighting for.
I don’t know how many more of these origin stories Marvel can pull off (Disney already learned from Solo: A Star Wars Story there’s a limit), but they got this one in under the wire and anyone who is a fan of the MCU will surely appreciate it for all the humor, action, adventure and triumph they’ve come to expect from this franchise.
It really did go higher, further and faster!
Oh, and Goose??? YESSSSSS!!!!
P.S. END CREDITS SCENES! There are two of them and they are both exactly what you’re hoping for.