“Forget the naysayers, The Marvels is brilliant comic book entertainment. It is highly enjoyable from start to finish.”
The Marvels have finally arrived. The latest comic book movie from Marvel Studios flies into screens from today. Starring Brie Larson, Teyonah Parris, and Iman Vellani, the movie is the sequel to both Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel. Audiences may need to brush up on the pair’s previous outings as well as the recent Secret Invasion to fully understand everything that happens or is said during the running time of the film. A basic knowledge of the characters and their respective stories, although not essential, will help a fair deal. With the return of Samuel L. Jackson once more as Nick Fury, the film seems to have all the pieces in place to make for a great piece of entertainment. But is the film an enjoyable return to form for Marvel Studios? Or is it as cold as space itself, and yet another average effort?
While investigating a wormhole linked to the Kree, Monica Rambeau’s powers become entangled with those of Kamala Khan and Carol Danvers. The trio team up to determine why they are swapping places with each other every time they use their powers.
Marvel fans, rejoice! Despite some problems that the film does have, this is a comic book movie to be proud of. From the start of proceedings until the end credits, the film soars higher than the MCU cinematic universe has done for a long time. Forget the just above-average Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3, and the average Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania, this more than makes up for them both. A rip-roaring adventure that is the perfect entertainment for families and Marvel fans alike. Even non-fans will get a kick out of the movie. It is a kick-ass ride that entertains and has us cheering, and laughing all the way through. And the surprises keep on coming.
The movie grabs us from the start and never lets go. Even during some of the more quiet moments, we can’t help but be hooked by what we are seeing on the silver screen. To get the utmost enjoyment from it, I suggest you see it on the biggest screen possible. It also contains a vast amount of humor, something that we don’t expect. Some of this actually makes us laugh out loud at times, not only because it is genuinely funny, but also because it is knowing. Some of the film is preposterous. Yet the film knows this and revels in it, letting the audience in on the joke. It isn’t high art, nor does it pretend to be. It knows exactly what it is, what it needs to do, and does it well.
THE MID-CREDITS STINGER
There is only one stinger present during the end credits and it comes about midway through them. There are mid-credits stingers and then there’s this movie’s mid-credits stinger. I, of course, won’t spoil it for you. But if I was to describe it in one single word it would simply be…WOW! Do you want to bring the house down after the main event? They’ve gone and done it. It is a stinger that will have the audience cheering their heads off. It only lasts for around a minute and change. But once it’s over, you’ll end up clapping at it until your palms are raw. It is genuinely one of the moments where you throw your arms in the air, clench your fists, bring them down again and holler ‘YES!’
Brie Larson as Carol Danvers/ Captain Marvel once more plays the character with relish. She also seems to be having fun at all times. Instead of being all moody, ready to fight at all times, this time, she seems chilled out. This is a more personable Captain Marvel than we have seen previously. We finally get some real depth invested into the character, some real and genuine emotion. And it pays off. Brie Larson doesn’t have a whole lot to do differently, but she makes us see the character in a different light. Add in some backstory, including finally resolving the mystery of where Captain Marvel was during the events of Avengers: Infinity War, and we’ve got a more rounded-out hero. Brie Larson steps back into the costume like she’s never been away. But she can’t claim to be the standout character.
Teyonah Parris as Monica Rambeau is also in top form. After her exploits during the season of WandaVision, Monica now has powers that complement Captain Marvel’s. And make her a vital part of what is to come, what happens and the future going forward. Far from being a weak link in the trio, Teyonah Parris comes into her own here. Also, she injects some real emotion into her portrayal of a character who feels let down by Carol. Although she is civil in the opening scenes between herself and Carol, there is an underlying tension bubbling under the surface. Carol doesn’t understand it, or why Monica is being this way with her. But once the answer is revealed, we discover a fragile side to Monica. One that endears us to her more than we expect. Teyonah Parris gives a great performance here. But again, she can’t claim to be the standout character.
That honor goes purely and simply to Iman Vellani. Returning to her role as Kamala Khan/ Ms. Marvel, she is a delight from start to finish. She managed to establish herself as the character in the Disney+ series. Here, she again injects so much energy, so much spark, and so much fun into the character, that we can’t help but keep our focus on her. It is a performance that even an Oscar-winning actress or an Oscar-nominated actor cannot match. Iman Vellani makes Kamala one of the best characters in the MCU, and an important one going forward. The actress also gets to indulge her heritage in a sequence that involves some colorful dancing (don’t ask, just watch!) to great acclaim. But it is the heart that she puts into her acting, her enthusiasm that makes her the standout character amongst them all. And it is a performance that lifts the movie up even higher than before. Iman Vellani is the MVP in the whole movie.
When it comes to the supporting cast, Samuel L. Jackson is in brilliant form as Nick Fury. This time, however, Fury is somewhat of a comic foil. He does get his heroic scenes as you’d expect. But Jackson actually gives a comic performance that we’ve not seen before. And it works wonderfully. Again, some of the humor surrounding Fury makes us roar with laughter. And it is to Jackson’s great credit that he plays along without batting an eyelid.
The triple threat of Zenobia Shroff as Muneeba Khan, Mohan Kapur as Yusuf Khan, and Saagar Shaikh as Aamir Khan works wonders. As Kamala’s mother, father, and older brother, the three are superb once again as they reprise their roles from the TV series. Zenobia Shroff gets the best lines, and the best laughs, and is the best out of the three. I can’t wait to see them all return in the future. The MCU needs them. And Goose the Flerkin Cat still rules.
Sadly, the same can’t be said for Zawe Ashton as Dar-Benn, the big bad of the movie. Please don’t get me wrong, Zawe Ashton is a brilliant actress and gives the character her all here. But the problem is that as the main villain, she doesn’t have a lot to do except act and look mean, do some nasty things, and give speeches that don’t resonate. It isn’t the actresses’ fault, that lies in the script. Dar-Benn is a thinly fleshed-out character, one that is simply written and then forgotten about until she’s needed for some big scene or to give some speech. It is yet another poorly-written villain that seems to stretch back sometime in the MCU.
THE DIRECTION, THE SCRIPT, AND THE SCORE
Nia Dacosta juggles the director’s chair with the added responsibility of being one of the three writers of the film (the others being Megan McDonnell and Elissa Karasik). And she accomplishes the task really well. Despite some letdowns in the script with regard to the villains, the screenplay actually works wonders. We get characters that we care about, some brilliant action scenes, some exposition that we don’t expect, and it lays down solid foundations, not only for the characters in the film but for the MCU going forward. It also contains more humor than we expect which is a genuine surprise and a delight. And it gives us some true fist-pumping moments.
Nia Dacosta’s direction is sublime. She makes the film pop from the start. The colors are vibrant as you’d expect, the shots are framed well, and the direction of her cast works wonders. We get a sense that the cast responded to her direction and were determined to repay the faith she put in them. Not one cast member phones in their performance, and we get the feeling that Nia Dacosta wouldn’t allow them to if they tried. This is an accomplished directorial effort. But then again, we really shouldn’t have doubted her in the first place (if indeed we did.)
The score by Laura Karpman is extremely good and fits the film perfectly. I do have one complaint though, the lack of Pinar Toprak’s theme for Captain Marvel. However, Laura Karpman has gone her own way with the score, bringing us something that stands on its own feet without having to go back to what’s been done and used before. And it is a wonderfully uplifting and enjoyable soundtrack to the film.
Forget the naysayers, The Marvels is brilliant comic book entertainment. It is highly enjoyable from start to finish. There are a few issues that drag it down but they are very few and far between. The cast is exemplary, the visual effects are superb, and the whole film pops. The brisk 105-minute runtime seems fitting to what we see on screen. However, it feels like a meal. It fills us up really nicely, sates our appetite, and leaves us feeling fulfilled. But we also feel that we have enough room for just a bit more, an after-dinner mint, shall we say, that would fill us to the brim. But this is a minor quibble.
With the mid-credits stinger, the film makes us feel almost completely satisfied. There are a few things along the way that drag the movie down slightly but they are very few and far between. After films such as Thor: Love And Thunder and Eternals which felt labored and as if the MCU was running out of ideas, and some by the numbers entries, this drags the Marvel Cinematic Universe back from the brink. It reinforces that Marvel is the company that will give us the best comic book entertainment on the block. I can’t wait to see where they go from here. And look forward to seeing these characters again in the future. The MCU is looking much more rosy than it did a few months back. Is the film Marvel-ous? Not quite. But it comes pretty damn close. I Flerkin loved it.
The Marvels is in cinemas worldwide now, courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.
Future of the Force News Editor,Liverpool F.C fan,Halloween Movie Fan, Friday The 13th movies fan, Star Wars Fan, Star Trek Fan.