Tag Archives: marvel

Movie Review: Spider-Man: Homecoming

It’s been a while since I’ve really posted a review, especially a movie review, and I felt like sharing my thoughts on the MCU’s latest offering: Spider-man: Homecoming.

Spider-man: Homecoming is probably not going to be lauded by most as the best Marvel has to offer, but I think it’s safe to say most will consider it the best of Spider-man. Tom Holland nails his role as a nerdy and quirky Peter Parker, who is a total Hufflepuff by day, and Spider-man-with-training-wheels-but-doesn’t-know-it by night. Even if you feel burned-out on Spider-man after so many reboots, if you had any love for the character in Civil War I’d definitely recommend checking out Homecoming.

A few of my favorite things about the movie:

  • Peter’s such a good guy. He hasn’t been jaded and I love his pure enthusiasm. His main desire seems to be to do the right thing.
  • Peter’s not a perfect Spider-man. He really has to work to develop his abilities. 
  • High school awkwardness. So much on-point high school awkwardness and I loved it. 
  • Captain America PSAs. Enough said. 🙂
  • Peter’s friend Ned. Ned feels like such a real high school student, rather than a glamorized version of one, and I really appreciated that. Plus he is a good friend to Peter. 
  • Peter makes a choice that gives him a nice little arc. I don’t want to spoil anything, but Peter shows some maturity towards the end of the movie that I thought was a nice touch.

Also, not necessarily a favorite thing about the movie, but something I did appreciate, is that there isn’t really a romance. Peter does pine after a girl, but they never kiss or go on a real date, and at the end he doesn’t “get” her. It was refreshing and felt more realistic!

But it wasn’t perfect…

  • The villain. I appreciated a certain aspect that I won’t spoil, but overall he was really pretty boring. Villains that aren’t named Loki really are Marvel’s Achilles heel.
  • Really… that’s the main thing.

Right now I feel Marvel is trying to walk the tightrope between taking itself too seriously and being too light with their movies since Civil War. While I really liked the turn of Winter Soldier, Age of Ultron fell a little flat, and Civil War never completely worked for me, so I’m enjoying the levity. Right now, I’m enjoying the high-quality popcorn entertainment Marvel provides, but I am curious to see how this might ultimately tie together for a deeper storyline.

Have you seen the latest Spider-Man? What are your thoughts?

Mini Movie Reviews: Inside Out, Ant-Man, and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

Inside Out

inside-out

I have not been happy with Pixar’s sudden shift from creating brand new, original stories to CRANKING OUT ALL THE SEQUELS, though admittedly, I had also not been happy with their last original offering, Brave. My expectations for Inside Out were cautiously optimistic. Thankfully, I really enjoyed it! The main character, Ryleigh, is about 11 or 12 when her family makes a big move from Minnesota to San Francisco, and I was really able to relate to it with the big moves I’ve made in my life. I really enjoyed all the characters and, as a movie about emotions should do, it gave me all the feels. Definitely recommended.

Ant-Man

ant-man

With Ant-Man, the latest offering of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe (note: do there is a difference between Marvel’s cinematic universe and other Marvel films that are being released like X-Men, the new Fantastic Four, etc.), I was again cautiously optimistic. The marketing department had not done much to convince me this would going to be better than an average superhero movie (because I expect better these days), but I also hoped it was probably going to be pretty good because, well, Marvel Cinematic Universe. Thankfully, it was quite enjoyable, maybe not profound or earth-shattering, but very funny. I think this movie for me is what Guardians of the Galaxy was for a lot of other people, with just a little twist in the typical superhero image and fun. Paul Rudd really sold the show for me. Recommended.

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

rogue-nation

I like the first MI movie. I kind of liked the second and third ones for a while… and I still think the third one is a pretty strong movie, but man does Phillip Seymour Hoffman freak me out in it… but recently I have grown a little less interested in them. Probably because they’re all overshadowed in my mind by the fourth one, Ghost Protocol. Brad Bird did an amazing job with the direction, I liked the addition of Jeremy Renner to the team… I don’t know, it just hit all the right notes for me. It’s got to be one of my favorite action movies. So my hopes were high for Rogue Nation and THEY WERE MET. This movie was twisty and left me guessing constantly. This is definitely going to be one I will want to watch over and over again like Ghost Protocol. Highly recommended!

Have you seen any of these movies yet? What are your thoughts?

Movie Review: Avengers Age of Ultron

I saw this movie on opening night. I enjoyed it. I went home.

I almost forgot about it.

Almost.

avengers_age_of_ultronBut let me back up. I love what Marvel has done with superhero films. I think what made Iron Man so great was that it didn’t take itself too seriously. It was self-aware. It was what we all wanted deep down and didn’t even realize.

i-am-iron-manCaptain America was very different, more historical and tragic, but it was about the American spirit and hero we all want. It touched something different inside us than Iron Man did.

captain-america

And then Thor was different because it took place in Asgard, a whole new world that was fascinating. And he’s a fish out of water when he’s on Earth.

thorAnd all these movies have great lines and great side characters: Pepper Potts, Peggy Carter, Sif and Loki, etc.

Where The Incredible Hulk unfortunately suffered in all this is that it was still just a regular superhero movie, like all the others we had seen before Marvel and Christopher Nolan changed the game. Apparently Edward Norton, who played the Hulk back then, was super involved in the writing of the movie, and he was a big fanboy of the Hulk. This sounds awesome in theory, but I wonder if he was trying so hard to fit the Hulk in this box that he had created that it didn’t give the character the chance to shine.

I’ll admit, I still wasn’t sold on Mark Ruffalo’s version of the character in the first Avengers movie, but I can give Age of Ultron the credit for making me care about him much more this time around. Or maybe what I should say is for making me care about Bruce Banner, the person underneath the Hulk.

bruce-bannerWhile we are talking about character exploration in Age of Ultron, I’m going to say that is the movie’s strength, and that is what has stuck with me since walking out of the theater.

There’s been a lot of talk about Black Widow in this movie, and say what you will about her role, but I think we got to see a whole new side of her and I was really glad to see it. Would it be cool if this was explored more in a movie or TV show? Yes. Will I move on with my life if it’s not? Yes. We see a much more vulnerable side of Natasha, but I don’t think she’s ever portrayed as weak. And while (mild spoiler) the interest between her and Banner did kind of surprise me and I wasn’t entirely sure I was 100% there with it (since we’ve had no build-up to this it felt like it came out of left field), I don’t think this weakened her either. It made her human. Same with their talk about infertility, which he started.

natasha-blackwidowI also appreciated that we finally got more from Hawkeye, after that poor guy got brainwashed in the first Avengers movie. His character has become a more relatable, almost every-man sort from this movie, and I thought that was a nice touch.

hawkeyeThe addition of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch really didn’t do a whole lot for me, though funnily enough, their best moments were when they were with Hawkeye. Quicksilver and Hawkeye had their running, “What, you didn’t see that coming?” joke, and Hawkeye hyped up Scarlet Witch for the battle against Ultron.

(Highlight for spoilers) Ultimately, the death of Quicksilver did very little for me. It made me sad for his sister, because it obviously put her in a lot of shock and pain, but I wasn’t sad for anyone else or for me. I had barely started kind of liking the guy when he died, though I appreciated the act that led to his death, especially when I was starting to worry that Hawkeye was going to be a goner. There was no real emotional resonance with it. 

There’s also the introduction of Vision, who is sort of interesting? We’ll have to see what happens to him in the future. We really get very little development with him at all.

Now let’s talk about the villain, Ultron. Even though he demonstrates just how much he is capable of, I never really feared that the whole entire world was actually in danger of this guy. I know it sounds ridiculous to say the stakes weren’t high enough when the whole idea was that he wanted to destroy the world but seriously, they weren’t high enough, because I was never worried that he would actually accomplish this, and not just because it’s a movie and I know it’s going to turn out OK in the end. But that could have been part of the problem. In Captain America: The Winter Solider the movie ends with SHIELD in shambles. It’s not a happy ending. While it was still probably surprising for many people watching the movie (unless they watched Agents of SHIELD, which they should have, honestly), destroying SHIELD is a much more viable option for a movie ending than destroying the world. But really, I think it was mostly that Ultron never truly frightened me enough.

But, the way Ultron was created was fascinated and I hope that comes back up because even though there is heated debating about it in the movie, it definitely feels kind of glossed over in  the grand scheme of things.

All in all, this is another solid movie from Marvel, enjoyable, witty lines, and some pretty good character development, but there were some weak spots in the movie that keeps it from being a favorite in the long run.

4stars2If you’ve see Age of Ultron, what are your thoughts?

Agent Carter, Inhumans, & I Have No Idea What’s Happening in the Marvelverse Now

*Warning, if you’re not caught up on Agent Carter or Agent of SHIELD, there are spoilers below!

I watched the first half of this season of Agents of SHIELD excited every single week. The show was finally just consistently good. Then the mid-season finale hit and… I don’t know… I felt like my tires got deflated. It was really hyped up by Marvel, and in some ways it was good, but I felt sort of like I got punched in the stomach and then the offender just ran off. I wrote a long blog post about it that I never published on the blog, because after I wrote it I thought maybe I just needed to get my feelings out and I was actually fine now that the words had been written.

Thankfully, Agent Carter was there to divert my thoughts for a while. If you know me, you know I’m a Peggy Carter fangirl, and I was super stoked about the show. When it started I was… confused… about the direction it was going in and the plot. I thought it was sort of going to pick off where the Agent Carter one shot left off, but it actually feels more like it never happened. I thought Peggy was supposed to be in charge of the beginning of the SSR, I mean, this had been alluded to in the one shot, in Captain America The Winter Soldier, and in Agents of SHIELD. Instead, she’s just the glorified secretary to the boys. But after a few episodes, I decided to enjoy it for what it was. I still loved Peggy, as well as many of the new secondary characters, such as Jarvis, Angie, and Sousa.

I ultimately enjoyed the season. I still never completely understood what the plot of it had to do with the Marvel universe at large, but I hoped for a second season to help sort it out some more. And I still want that.

Then Agents of SHIELD returned, and we’re one episode in and while it was a fine episode, I’m still feeling uncertain about what’s happening. Fitz finds out what’s happening to Skye but he’s going to keep it a secret. Raina’s essentially a demented porcupine. Bobbi and Mack are up to something, but what? Are Fitz and Simmons ever going to talk again? OK, I know they won’t let that drop, but I want it now, dang it. I have a hard time caring about the Inhumans storyline at the present because I’m still very worried about the humans on the show. I am completely not over Trip’s death (that was what my unpublished ranting blog post was about, essentially), I worry about Fitz-Simmons, I worry about all of them.

Except Ward. He wasn’t in this last episode and I did not care or miss him for two seconds. They made me hate him that much. (Or maybe that indifferent to him.) I just don’t like feeling this way. I guess I’m not supposed to like feeling this way. No one said this was a Hallmark movie. But just the thought of him popping up again just makes me feel… ugh. I just don’t care about him. I want him to leave. I want Trip back (not matter how impossible). I want to smoosh Fitz and Simmons’ faces together, and then we can carry on with Hydra and Inhumans and whatnot.

I’m happy that this next episode features Lady Sif, because I love me some Sif (not quite as much as Peggy, but still a lot). I just hope things will make sense soon. When the season ends, I want it to feel like the story is heading in the right direction. The season one finale left us hanging, but it was good and left me wanting more in the right ways. I know there’s some time and I shouldn’t worry, I suppose I just hoped that after such a long hiatus I would get something I was hoping to see, instead of basically nothing at all that I cared about (other than Coulson yelling and bringing down some Hydra folks, because that was good stuff).

Also, how is this going to tie into Avengers 2? What the heck is that movie about anyway? That first trailer really gave me chills in the best way, and this newest one is just not nearly as interesting to me. I’m sure it will all work out, but I’m just curious about what direction the Marvel universe is actually going if there’s supposed to be Civil War and so much other crap going on. I’m sure someone with comic book cred could help me out.

What are your thoughts on Agents of SHIELD, Agent Carter, and the various Marvel storylines? 

The Top 3 Superhero Side Characters Who Deserve Their Own Spotlight

Sometimes there are side characters in the superhero story that really deserve their own chance to shine. These are the three that I would love to see get there own spotlight… in no particular order…

1. ROBIN John Blake

johnblakeMy husband and I recently rewatched the three movies of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy, and it just confirmed what I’ve always wanted: to see Christopher Nolan turn Joseph Gordon-Levitt into Batman. So why do I love John Blake so much? He’s intelligent, resourceful, and brave. He isn’t dramatic and he doesn’t get distracted. I’m not saying he’s perfect, but… he’s pretty awesome. And he deserves his own trilogy! Step aside, Batfleck!

2. Peggy Carter

260364422177501418_KTseeC91_cMy love for Peggy Carter and my enthusiasm for the upcoming Agent Carter TV show is unending! I adore how she is feminine yet tough and able to handle herself. She grew to care for Steve for his courage and heart, and she possesses those qualities as well. And though it was hard, she was able to move past his death and accomplish great things. She’s amazing and totally deserves this show and I cannot WAIT!

3. Lady Sif

lady-sifLady Sif is awesome. More awesome than Jane, more awesome than Thor. She doesn’t need some silly hammer to knock down the enemy. She did appear in an episode of Agents of SHIELD, which was GREAT, but I could definitely use more Sif! A Sif movie? TV show? Even a one-shot! Just give me more SIF, please!

Which side character from a superhero story would you like to see in the spotlight?