No one’s past is crystal clear. It is full of potholes, bad memories, and mistakes that still linger in our minds. When facing our past, we can either run from it or face it.
The new Marvel movie, Black Widow, premiered two weeks ago. It takes place between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. The film opens on an average American suburban family in Ohio sitting down to dinner. But dinner is cut short when their true identity as Russian spies is revealed and they must hightail it out of the US. It then cuts to the present. Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) has discovered a conspiracy that is tied to her previous life as an assassin and spy. When she becomes a target, she must turn to the family that was assigned to her by the spy agency. Her younger sister, Yelena (Florence Pugh), father Alexei (David Harbour), and mother Melina (Rachel Weisz) have all gone their separate ways. Revealing the source of the conspiracy and ending it requires more than a physical coming together as a group, it means facing the unhealed emotional wounds that still linger.
This movie is amazing. The action and stunts are well balanced with the humor and the emotion. As an audience member, I saw the main character as more than a superhero who is able to save the day. I saw a woman who is conflicted about both her present and her past. She makes the difficult decision to look at what she has done square in the eye instead of running from it. It a lesson that goes well beyond the genre and movies in general.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely.
Black Widow is now in theaters.
P.S. Stay for the mid credit scene. The wait is long, but it is worth it.
Movie sequels, especially superhero movie sequels are a questionable topic. The film has to appeal to the general audience, while staying true to the narrative from the source material and the previous films.
The film starts off with The Avengers trying to prevent a terrorist attack in Lagos, Nigeria, While their mission is successful, the destruction that comes with such a mission is not unnoticed.
The UN, via Secretary Of State Thaddeus Ross (William Hurt) presents our heroes with a choice. Sign a document that would allow them to continue with their work, but with supervision, or not sign and potentially be outside of the law. The line in the sand in drawn when Captain America (Captain America) and Falcon (Anthony Mackie) lead the side that is against the document while Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) and The Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) are all for signing the document.
The disagreement becomes tenuous when Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) is found to still be alive and accused of murder. This murder hits close to home and has the potential to destroy The Avengers in a way that nothing else can.
I expect these kind of films to contain action scenes. It’s part and parcel of the genre. The problem is when the narrative is overtaken by action scenes. For my perspective, the narrative was there, but I wish the fight scenes could have been reduced (or left to the extras section of the DVD) and more of the overall narrative could have been present on-screen.
Do I recommend it? Well, it leads to the next film, but the plot is starting to become a little thin for me.
To answer your question, it’s a maybe for me, but someone else may disagree.
Captain America: Civil War is presently in theaters.