Here at Meredith College, we are no strangers to strong women, but the cinematic world does not display strong female characters as often as we might hope. As a fitting way to celebrate International Women’s Day on Friday, Mar. 8, I went to see the new Captain Marvel film, for which Marvel Studios chose to merge the Ms. Marvel and Captain Marvel stories to create a female Captain Marvel, keeping the commanding and militaristic title which captures the strength of this heroine. This movie has a refreshing, distinct and intentional feminist feel as the lead character, Carol Danvers, is impressively played by Brie Larson. Larson conveys a tough and powerful character who fights for good in the world with compassion. Larson’s indestructible yet sincere essence effectively captures all that Carol Danvers is: the most powerful character in Marvel works, according to the official Marvel website. Her expressions and motions accurately portray the grit of her character, especially in a scene near the end in which she overcomes a powerful alien villain’s mind manipulation against her.
Another notable theme is friendship: specifically, women building each other up. In the film, Carol returns to the home of her best friend, Maria (portrayed by Lashana Lynch), and is received with a deep love and respect by the friend of her past life. Maria also has a daughter who already shows signs of toughness and decision-making at a young age, hinting at the strong generation of women rising up now. The character Mar-Vell holds another important role in the movie as the leader of research to save the universe against a powerful alien evil force, which Captain Marvel continues for Mar-Vell when she is no longer able. She deciphers evil from good from the beginning and fights to defeat the evil in order to help the innocent. Mar-Vell is played by Annette Carol Bening, giving the audience a variety of strong women as main characters, from children to senior citizens and both African-American and white.
This film captures a heroine who not only gets the job done but shows humility and compassion throughout the process in a distinctly human way. Larson, in an interview with IMDb, noted that she was excited to play Carol Danvers because she is a flawed character. Larson commented that all humans are flawed, and as the film highlights, life is about our determination to stand up and keep fighting when we are down. The film plot mainly parallels the original 1968 Ms. Marvel comic that features the character Carol Danvers with the air force background that the film character Danvers, “Vers,” has, as well as, shares comic character Danvers merge to Captain Marvel that occurs in a later comic. Captain Marvel gives more background information on its heroine than other Marvel movies.
The film is intriguing from start to finish with plot twists and incredible acting talent throughout. Whether you have read every Marvel comic and seen every film or do not have a clue what Marvel Studios is, I highly recommend you go support this movie that promotes strong women, friendship and so many important human values.
By Ashleigh Murr, Staff Writer