Starring: Brie Larson, Teyonah Parris, Iman Vellani, Samuel L. Jackson, Zawe Ashton, Zenobia Shroff, Mohan Kapur, and Saagar Shaikh
Director: Nia DaCosta
The Marvels feels like it had so much more story to tell (at least 30 minutes’ worth), and its makeshift structure is clearly a product of the end of the MCU’s Bob Chapek era. But while some emotional moments and plot points are underdeveloped, the film is ultimately an enjoyable time and highly rewatchable. The lead trio shines together (Iman Vellani is just a fucking delight), and director Nia DaCosta puts together great set pieces, both comedic and action-packed. Plus, the endings (worth a half-reel alone) hold promise that the so-called post-Endgame “mess” will soon be behind us.
Just as it feels like things are about to get heavy in the MCU, The Marvels boasts a lighter tone, which is a welcome change. The three leads (Brie Larson, Iman Vellani, Teyonah Parris) work well together, and though I wasn’t particularly a fan of Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan (Vellani) is the highlight here as her quirks are vastly improved when paired with seasoned superheroes. It’s certainly no homerun, though, thanks to a sorely underdeveloped villain and a progressively messy plot, but I can’t deny I had fun with the creative set pieces from director Nia DaCosta (the opening fight is excellent) and the team's chemistry.
For a person who thinks both Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel are bottom-tier MCU offerings, The Marvels might be slightly better than I expected, but that doesn’t elevate it any higher than just okay. The opening fight scene is admittedly a lot of fun, but the movie also has a forced, almost pandering, Bollywood-inspired set piece and a silly sequence set to “Memory” from Cats that rivals the goofiest parts of Love and Thunder. Plus, overall, the plot is just thin and messy, not to mention an ending that sets up a future I have zero interest in (the mid-credits scene is a different story).
I'm not one of those people who enjoys constantly harping on Marvel, but if The Marvels is any indication, their reign is coming to an end. It's not horrible, but it's certainly nonsensical from a story and tone perspective. It's all over the place, and the villain is as undercooked as it gets. Still, I did have fun, though. When director Nia DaCosta was able to express some creative freedom, it elicited some enjoyment and laughter out of me, as did the three leads, especially Iman Vellani. However, I did not have nearly enough fun to call this movie good.
The latest MCU entry, The Marvels, shines due to its stellar chemistry between leads Brie Larson, Teyonah Parris, and Iman Vellani. It’s got boatloads of fun action sequences and comedic moments that will have you grinning from ear to ear. While this well-paced popcorn flick is full of energy, I can’t help but feel a wee bit underwhelmed by another weak MCU villain and a subpar script that felt like scenes were missing from the final cut. Although it falls in the middle of the road in regards to Marvel's films, I walked away joyfully entertained with this lighter and more buoyant outing.
I was so pleasantly surprised by The Marvels. Unlike the latest Marvel offerings, director Nia DaCosta brings creative flair and originality to inject humour and heart into the story, as well as composing some entertaining set pieces. It’s well-paced and energetic, and driven by the genuine chemistry between the leads Brie Larson, Teyonah Parris, and Iman Vellani. Although the script is a little weak, and I would have liked for the villain’s plot to have been further developed, it’s the first Marvel film in a long time that I can honestly say I’d rewatch.