Marvel-ous Day 5: Part 2

June 28, 2020 at 6:57 pm (Reviews, TV/movie review, With a list)

Now, I know what you’re all thinking. DID THE CHOCOLATE MOUSSE SET OVERNIGHT?

No it did not.

Somehow, TJ didn’t seem to mind.

ANT-MAN AND THE WASP (2018) Disney +

One-sentence summary: Ant-Man and the Wasp rescue Wasp’s mother from the quantum realm.

The first opening scene is good (Hank Pym and Janet as the first-gen ant-man suit wearers; Janet has to go subatomic and is lost in the subatomic realm), and the second is magnificent.

The second scene is a deliciously, ridiculously elaborate game between Scott Lang and his daughter Cassie. Cassie is a brilliant child, and her love for her dad shines like the sun.

After Infinity War, this is a wonderfully light, fun movie with a nice simple goal: to save one person. And we finally get to see the Wasp in action.

We also meet Ghost (Ava), who is certainly a villain but she’s in so much physical and emotional pain and all she wants is to live.

*

My daughter wandered through the living room so I gave her a bowl of chocolate mousse too, explaining that it was meant to set but it still tasted good. She said, “Next time try looking at the recipe.”

Thanks for that, kid.

She redeemed herself (or not) a few minutes later by telling me I make the best mousse-flavoured soup ever.

*

The Ant-Man films are genuinely improved by product placement.

And there’s another iconic moment during the chase:

I love the fact that Ghost gets healed and becomes Ant-Man’s “new friend”.

Post-credits scene 1: Ant-Man goes into the Quantum Realm again to fetch some more healing energy for Ghost while Hank, Janet, and Hope stand by with the equipment outside. Then all three Pyms dissolve into dust, just like so many others did at the end of Infinity War. And Ant-Man is stuck in the Quantum Realm.

Post-credits scene 2:

 

CAPTAIN MARVEL (2019) Disney +

One-sentence summary: Captain Marvel realises she’s Captain friggin’ Marvel.

We open with a dream/flashback of a plane crash, then Kree soldier Vers (soon to become Captain Marvel, and used to be Carol Danvers) wakes from her dream and talks her mentor Yon-Rogg into a training session. He lectures her on controlling her emotions (and her shiny and very potent super-fist) but she eventually punches him with her shiny super-fist. And gets in trouble for it.

On her first mission against the shape-changing Skrull, Vers is captured.

They shuffle through her memories, and we see a girl who is constantly told to give up and never does. We also see Dr Wendy Lawson for the first time. Vers promptly escapes from the Skrull, taking an emergency pod, and crashing through the roof of a Blockbuster Video store in the movie’s first seriously iconic moment, neatly establishing time, place, and tone.

She quickly butts heads with Fury (who will shortly be her staunchest ally; the chemistry between them is glorious—as is the chemistry between Carol and her best friend the fighter pilot Monica Rambeau, and between Carol and Rambeau’s daughter).

Carol runs away from Fury to chase some Skrull. Specifically, this one:

The Skrull are brilliant villains because of the extreme paranoia of knowing they could be anywhere, and anyone. But Carol knows her business, and she punches that old lady in the face without hesitation.

*

Later, the script flips and we find out the Kree have been gaslighting Vers (who is human) into thinking she’s Kree—and into thinking her super-punching skills were given to her by them, rather than something she gained accidentally back in that plane crash. Carol adapts fast, and helps the Skrull as Dr Wendy Lawson (actually a Kree scientist based on Earth and helping Skrull refugees) wanted.

But the Kree follow her into a Skrull refugee base, and capture her.

*

The Kree double down on their gaslighting, calling her cute and pathetic, and saying that her only strength comes from them. But they’re wrong, and Carol now knows it. Not only does she break free of the fight and of their mind control, she takes the power-limiter (that they have told her is necessary to keep her safe) off her neck.

It is glorious.

Then Goose eats the tesseract (yes, the power stone one). He’s not a sweet ginger tabby, at all, but a terrifying Flerken monster. And he eats a bunch of baddies too.

It is gloriouser.

And then “Just a Girl” by Gwen Stefani plays as Carol beats up all those who have told her they’re her team, her only friends, her saviours. Their threats and intimidation just… don’t work. At all. Then she blows up a bunch of spaceships so easily it makes her laugh.

It is the gloriousest.

*

But is it too on the nose?

*

I felt ambivalent coming into this film for the second time. The first time it meant so much to have a female superhero film at last, and the themes of gaslighting and lies were so powerful. But was it just that—a girlie film, catering purely to the frustrations of the females of the population?

And yeah. It definitely resonates more with women. Because women get more gaslighting, more lies, and more people telling us we can’t do what we want, and that we’re “too emotional” (and at the same time, that we should smile more). And it’s high time we got a truly awesome superhero film that went ahead and leaned into those themes.

This is that movie. And until such time as all reviewers remember that

(a) Women make up half the population, and

(b) Themes that are more relevant to women than men are still universal, and certainly not embarrassing or trite (something I’m clearly not over myself), and

(c) Superheroes aren’t just for boys

…this film will have a special power that makes it even greater than the norm.

*

And yes, I spent several months after this yelling, “FLERKEN!” at my cat during odd moments. But so did everyone.

Which reminds me. My kitten wasn’t born yet. Time to give her the flerken treatment.

*

Post-credits scene 1: Captain America, Black Widow, Dr Banner, and Rhodes are looking at screens showing how many people vanished in that awful moment at the end of Infinity War (same moment as the post-credits Ant-Man and the Wasp scene), with Fury’s special Captain Marvel pager in the other room. Then Captain Marvel appears among them and says, “Where’s Fury?”

Post-credtis scene 2: Goose the flerken throws up the tesseract on Fury’s desk.

*

Since my entire mind is so very saturated with this Infinity Saga at present, I’m compiling a bunch of lists! What are the best five movies? Best five scenes? Best five villains? Best five one-liners?

Is there a particular list you’d like to see?

1 Comment

  1. Summary of a Saga | crazy talk said,

    […] 3 (part 1, part 2, part 3 aka Infinity War, part 4, part 5 aka Endgame, part […]

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