Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Digital Review: Captain Marvel

Two of the biggest box-office draws this year have been produced by Marvel Studios - Avengers Endgame and Captain Marvel (PG-13; 125 minutes), which the latter is now available to own on Digital HD (Movies Anywhere), 4K Ultra HD (+Blu-ray +Digital), Blu-ray (+Digital), and DVD.

Directed by Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck, the film stars Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Djimon Hounsou, Lee Pace, Lashana Lynch, Gemma Chan, Annette Bening, Clark Gregg, and Jude Law.

Set in 1995, the film centers on Vers (played by Brie Larson), the only human member of an elite Kree military called "Starforce." After a mission to take down a group of Skrulls, Vers crashes-lands in Los Angeles, where she intertwines with S.H.I.E.L.D. agents Nick Fury and Phil Coulson (played by Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg) right before the shape-shifting Skrulls crashes the party.

Fast forward a few chase scenes, where Vers learns her real name is Carol Danvers, a U.S. Air Force fighter pilot who was supposedly killed in an explosion. In reality, the accident gave her superhuman strength (and memory loss). As she learns more about her past, the "Starforce" travel to Earth in the attempt to eliminate the Skrulls refugees.

Basically, Carol must choose which side to fight against - the Kree or Skrulls.

Digital Exclusive Special Features:
  • Journey into Visual Effects with Victoria Alonso – Experience how filmmakers' visions of the MCU come to life on-screen through the skill of the Visual Effects team.
  • What Makes a Memory: Inside the “Mind Frack” – What does it take to craft an action-packed sequence for a Marvel Studios film? Nothing short of an epic team effort!
  • Concept Art – Explore artwork from “Captain Marvel” and trace the visual development of characters.
  • On-Set Images – Uncover a trove of behind-the-scenes and production photography.

Digital & Blu-ray Special Features:
  • Alternate Movie Versions
    • Movie with Intro – An introduction by directors/screenwriters Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck.
    • Movie with Commentary – Commentary by directors/screenwriters Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck.
  • Featurettes:
    • Becoming a Super Hero – Follow Brie Larson's journey as she joins the MCU, and see what it takes to be a Marvel Super Hero in every sense of the word.
    • Big Hero Moment – Explore how impactful Captain Marvel's entrance into the MCU is, and how she inspires audiences around the world.
    • The Origin of Nick Fury – Witness some of the MCU’s most significant events through Nick Fury's eyes, and see how his influence helped shape the MCU.
    • The Dream Team – Discover why Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck are the perfect pair to direct Marvel Studios’ most powerful hero.
    • The Skrulls and the Kree – Take a deeper look into the Skrulls and the Kree, their ongoing conflict, and the importance of shifting perspectives in the film.
    • Hiss-sterical Cat-titude – The cast and crew dish on working with Goose and the raw talent it takes to portray such a complex character on-screen.
  • Deleted Scenes
    • “Who Do You Admire Above All Others?” - Kree Commander Yon-Rogg must answer to the Supreme Intelligence, who questions his leadership ability.
    • Starforce Recruits - Yon-Rogg lectures a roomful of students on the Kree's mission to defend all nations from the scourge of the Skrulls.
    • Heading to Torfa - Vers (Danvers) and her fellow Starforce members banter as they prepare for their rescue mission to Torfa.
    • “What, No Smile?” - In this alternate version of a scene from the movie, Vers is consulting a map when she receives a dubious offer of assistance.
    • Black Box - Keller attempts to track Vers and Fury after their escape in a quadjet from the Joint USAFA Facility.
    • Rookie Mistake - Novice S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson helps Director Keller out of an embarrassing situation.
  • Gag Reel – The fate of the universe hangs in the balance as the cast battles props, flubs and Flerkens in these outtakes from the set.

Final Thoughts

While I didn't grow up reading comic books, I've become a fan of Marvel Comics in recent years thanks to the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe); which has had its share of great films and a few forgettable ones (Thor: Dark World, Iron Man 2 & 3). Captain Marvel arrived in theaters just a few weeks before Avengers: Endgame took over the box office, but it managed to haul in over $1 billion during its run. I live in a one-screen theatre town and the film never made its way here. Anyhow, I wasn't too hyped about Captain Marvel mostly because I'm not a big Brie Larson fan. Nevertheless, it's a Marvel film, so part of me wanted to see the thing, which I finally did last week on Digital HD.

What did I think of it?

Captain Marvel was better than what I was expecting it to be, but it was also very underwhelming compared to the other MCU films. It felt more like a filler movie leading up to Avengers: Endgame. Now that's not exactly a bad thing, as I do get tired of the "end the world" plots that superhero flicks like to recycle. Like I've already mentioned, I've never been a fan of Brie Larson, but she does a decent job as Carol Danvers (a.k.a. Captain Marvel). However, whenever a sequel is made (And there will be one!), I hope the scriptwriters develop the character a little bit better. If it wasn't for Samuel L. Jackson as Agent Fury, the movie would have been a complete bore. The best scenes are the buddy moments between Danvers and Fury. Also, there were a few scene-stealers with Agent Coulson (played once again by Clark Gregg) and Goose the cat that amused me.

The special effects were a bit of a mixed bag for me. The de-aging special effects to make Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg look younger was amazing. The CGI battle scenes with Captain Marvel flying around looked weird at times or in other words - it looked too fake; almost like a scene from video game.

The picture and sound quality for the Digital HD is perfect. As for the special features, there are tons of bonus extras that should make any MCU fan happy.

Overall, Captain Marvel isn't a necessarily a bad movie. Despite some flaws, it's still an entertaining superhero flick.
*Note - I received a Digital HD code from Walt Disney Home Entertainment.
All opinions are my own.

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