A Movie Entry – Marvel’s Captain Strong Female Character

This was, in every sense, Marvel’s response to Wonder Woman, and that is probably what kept it from being a really good movie. It was enjoyable, and the MCU is long overdue for a female lead, but the weight of those expectations and Wonder Woman led to a movie that was obviously trying too damn hard.

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A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned from Captain Marvel

1) WB/DC is not the only studio that refuses to use the title character’s superhero name in the actual movie.
2) How Nick Fury lost his eye.
3) Why Nick Fury will never tell anyone how he lost his eye.
4) If one alien race is terrified of an apparently benign Earth creature, you can chalk it up to a hilarious inter-species mis-identification. But if two alien races are terrified of an apparently benign Earth creature, you should probably be terrified as well.
5) All it takes to jerry-rig 1990s Earth tech into an intergalactic communication device is an alien power source and parts from Radio Shack.
6) Even though the CGI necessary to de-age actors has ascended the uncanny valley, it’s still kind of disturbing.
7) When villains lay the, “Fight me one-on-one” trap, heroes can in fact resist the bait.
8) Villains, however, can’t resist giving the hero just one more chance to overcome the only obstacle preventing the hero’s total victory.
9) All it takes to become a superhero is survive what should, by the laws of physics, be an absolutely (and probably messy) fatal accident.
10) For a technologically advanced space-faring, star-spanning imperial alien race, the Kree make some pretty dumb strategic errors.

A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned from Avengers: Infinity War

So “Daddy issues is the true universal constant” isn’t on this list because I’ve already learned that from previous MCU movies, although I will say that is reinforced here.

1) Asgard has rabbits but apparently not raccoons.
2) Rocket either really likes Thor, or really likes weapons.
3) Vision is fully-functional.
4) The Hulk has never known fear, and is terrible at dealing with it.
5) Tony Stark, a noted genius, remains remarkably short-sighted when it comes to anticipating what other people will say, do, think or feel.
6) The Cloak of Levitation is a sentient being.
7) Bruce and Black Widow still apparently have some chemistry between them.
8) There is always time for quips.
9) Captain Marvel can be reached with a circa 1990s pager.
10) Dark Helmet was right – “Evil will always triumph because good is dumb.”

A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned From Black Panther

1) Yep, the universal constant is daddy issues.
2) Team MCU can create a well-rounded sympathetic villain not named Loki.
3) Not only is Wakanda awesome, everyone in Wakanda is totally kick-ass.
4) Princess Shuri is far and away the best Disney princess.
5) Apparently Agent Ross was the only non-Avenger paying attention to Black Panther during “Civil War.”
6) Keeping ancient traditions isn’t a bad thing, but maybe it’s not good to have a traditional physical fight actually determine rulership.
7) I like all the protagonists so much I actually can’t decide which one I like best, and that is quite the compliment.
8) Vibranium is practically magic.
9) Team MCU can still create a mostly self-contained solo movie, which I appreciate.
10) Team MCU can also create a mostly serious movie, which I also appreciate.

Other thoughts – this is one of the best movies, if not the best movie, in the MCU catalogue. It’s primarily a political and family drama with some kick-ass action sequences. There’s not a lot of levity and certainly no quips or zingers, but that would have not worked in this movie. I hope the MCU has some more of these in waiting.

A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned from Spider-man: Homecoming

1) Tony Stark is the most irresponsible person in the entire MCU and is self-aware enough to know if his comrades found out he recruited an underage teen and gave him a weaponized murder-suit, they would kick his smug armored ass so hard Howard Stark would feel it.
2) Peter Parker is terrible at hiding his secret identity.
3) Adrian Toomes is more threatening without the Vulture suit than with the Vulture suit.
4) The Vulture actually can use the Z-axis to his advantage in a fight.
5) Happy Hogan is terrible at security.
6) Tony Stark isn’t much better at security.
7) Spider-man needs a lot more practice at this.
8) For all the flak critics gave Sam Raimi for a “campy” Spider-man, a Spider-man movie works much better as mostly comedy/action and some drama than a humorless action drama.
9) Other British MCU actors should take accent lessons from Tom Holland.
10) With great power may come great responsibility, but it still doesn’t grant great social skills.

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Storytelling Successes – Wonder Woman (Part 2 of 2)

Continued from Part 1 –

The Main Attraction:
1) Character – As an origin story, this success of this movie is entirely dependent  on how engaged the audience is with Diana and therefore Diana’s story. Shockingly this seemingly common sense bit of storytelling is lost on many contemporary film makers / studios (who then wonder why their big budget tent-pole blockbuster failed harder than the 2017 Cleveland Browns).

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