I very much disagree with you (and other apparent fair-er critics who shared similar complaints) once again, JakeS. I had a feeling I would. Fortunately! :) This is a wonderful and, in my eyes, extraordinary movie (no less than a good movie) in my damn opinion. Here’s comes a much more enthusiastic and radical response!
While the comparisons to Wonder Woman were inevitable, I find all the complaints about Captain Marvel failing to achieve what WW did (I.e. “there’s no wonder here”, “not really empowerment”) to be poor and missing the point. In terms of female empowerment, CM clearly went for something different than WW and it successfully did what it WANTED to. They are TWO DIFFERENT CHARACTERS, after all!
Words like “forced” have been thrown to criticize its themes and story, but I couldn’t disagree more with these negative opinions. What I saw was a uniquely told origin story that was effective and unforgivably full of girl power. Whatever issues others have with its themes/handling of female empowerment (not referring to the sexist trolls who take issue with strong girls that show attitude —or strong females in general), I just know the film did the title character justice. Carol is courageous, persevering, strong in every way, and unapologetically herself. There was as much depth in her as there was grit--she was just real. So with all that in mind, I’m betting this movie is going to resonate with more people (ghoulish trolls excluded obvs) than the charming but rather idealistic WW did.
Moreoever, despite the predictably tired “Marvel formula” criticisms I’ve seen from some, while the film shared a lot in common with Phase 1 films (for good reasons) imo it by and large felt different from many MCU films when it came to story structure and aesthetic. Uneven? It was certainly a puzzling film, and yet... that absolutely worked for me. On the whole, it is not one of the more eventful MCU films. However, I don’t at all see that as a negative thing. The movie is still packed with the satisfying thrills and humor so typical of the MCU, but for the most part it feels like a self-contained and understated film. Although it can be slower paced than others, I think the film ultimately told the story it needed to and had the right pacing. On that note, a major reason why this film worked in my book was because of Carol’s friendship with her old pal. Their scenes were impactful and well-executed.
Perhaps this could have been a bigger film in some ways, albeit I’ll be damned if I said I was underwhelmed. In addition to it having some of the most electrifying sequences...the action IS great... and solid characterization of any Marvel film (obligatory imo), I also found the duo of Carol & Fury to be PERFECT! To be frank, I’m getting amped just thinking about it! So now, much to the chagrin of the reactionary manchild army online, it’s time for CM to shine with audiences around the globe! So ready to see her in Endgame!!!
Honestly, I could compile a list of my problems with "Captain Marvel" but, ultimately ... I was bored (I actually yawned in the cinema when the Tesseract popped up, yet again).
But, as you know, I totally respect your opinion and I appreciate that you are a fan of these films.
The person who reviewed it for the site that I usually supply reviews for also looked at it much more kindly than I did ;)
You can read all of my latest film reviews here: https://www.maketheswitch.com.au/