Captain Marvel First Reactions: Empowering, Entertaining, and Full of Surprises

How is Brie Larson? Is the movie totally '90s? And what's the deal with that fabulous cat?

by | February 20, 2019 | Comments

With its 21st installment, the Marvel Cinematic Universe finally has its first movie centered around a solo female superhero. And it delivers spectacularly, according to critics who saw Captain Marvel last night. While full reviews are still embargoed, social media reactions on Twitter following the screening highlight Brie Larson’s performance in the title role, the movie’s ‘90s nostalgia, Ben Mendelsohn’s villain, and, most notably, a scene-stealing cat.

Here’s what the critics are saying about Captain Marvel:

Has Marvel done it again?

Captain Marvel is pure joy
Devan Coggan, Entertainment Weekly

Captain Marvel is a blast!
Eric Eisenberg, CinemaBlend

Captain Marvel is a lot of fun!…Thumbs up!
Jim Vejvoda, IGN

Second viewing can’t come soon enough.
Perri Nemiroff, Collider

Captain Marvel is a mixed bag.
Gregory Ellwood, The Playlist

How does it fit with the other MCU movies?

It feels completely unlike any other Marvel film. A unique and fresh take on an origin story that feels new. This is one of my favorite Marvel movies of all time.
– Scott Menzel, We Live Entertainment

MCU’s most multilayered villain story.
– Peter Sciretta, Slashfilm

The MCU feels more complete now that Carol is in it.
Kayti Burt, Den of Geek

The future of the MCU gets even brighter adding Captain Marvel to the mix.
Perri Nemiroff, Collider

Marvel Studios
(Photo by Marvel Studios)

What does the film mean to women?

It’s super empowering. It made me feel proud to be a woman.
Yolanda Machado, The Wrap

Carol’s hero moment was very cathartic/true to the female experience.
Kayti Burt, Den of Geek

I cannot wait for the generation of little girls who will grow up with Carol Danvers as a hero.
Devan Coggan, Entertainment Weekly

What does Captain Marvel do well?

Marvel does a prequel right, not over-explaining too much but giving us unexpected answers in interesting ways.
Peter Sciretta, Slashfilm

Has some cool surprises that I definitely didn’t see coming, and the mystery/origin it weaves is engaging and fun.
Eric Eisenberg, CinemaBlend

Some nice surprises and clever decisions throughout. Cool sci-fi elements. And funny!
Jim Vejvoda, IGN

Marvel Studios
(Photo by Marvel Studios)

How is Brie Larson?

Brie Larson literally shines in the role.
Steve Weintraub, Collider

Brie Larson is awesome and makes a fantastic first step into the MCU.
Eric Eisenberg, CinemaBlend

Really fell for Brie Larson’s sass, strength and energy in the role.
Perri Nemiroff, Collider

How is Ben Mendelsohn as the villain?

Ben Mendelsohn is the surprise MVP.
Drew Taylor, Moviefone

Mendelsohn steals the [movie].
Gregory Ellwood, The Playlist

I can’t get over how great Ben Mendelsohn is. I was worried he was just going to be one of those Marvel villains with alien makeup, but that’s not the case at all. This movie doesn’t work without him.
Mike Ryan, Uproxx

Ben Mendelsohn and the cat both steal the show.
Peter Sciretta, Slashfilm

The cat?

Goose is a brilliant scene-stealer.
Eric Eisenberg, CinemaBlend

Goose the cat is definitely a scene-stealer but one that has a purpose.
– Scott Menzel, We Live Entertainment

I would die for Goose the cat.
– Devan Coggan, Entertainment Weekly

My kingdom for a Nick Fury and Goose buddy comedy.
– Angie Han, Mashable

I am pitching a spin-off series (they are going to sell so much Goose merch…to me).
– Roth Cornet, Screen Junkies

Marvel Studios
(Photo by Marvel Studios)

How are the visual effects?

VFX of full Marvel powers much better than trailers.
– Gregory Ellwood, The Playlist

Realized something half way through Captain Marvel: the de-aging technology being used has become so seamless that I forgot it was being used. We are on the precipice of something both exciting and scary.
Steve Weintraub, Collider

Is the movie totally ’90s?

Just enough ‘90s nostalgia without overdoing it.
– Jim Vejvoda, IGN

Several truly magnificent music moments for this 90s kid.
Kayti Burt, Den of Geek

As a ‘90s teen, the soundtrack….oh, the soundtrack.
– Yolanda Machado, The Wrap

Finally, the MCU and a Nirvana song come together (as Kurt Cobain wanted).
– Mike Ryan, Uproxx

A fun 90s soundtrack, but sometimes the song choices feel too obvious.
– Peter Sciretta, Slashfilm

Are there any major complaints?

It’s a little wobbly at times but only because it’s so ambitious.
– Drew Taylor, Moviefone

First half is slow and uninspired. Second half much better. Feels like directors could not escape Marvel formula.
Gregory Ellwood, The Playlist

Will it get you hyped for Avengers: Endgame?

So ready for Avengers: Endgame.
– Steve Weintraub, Collider

Thanos is f**ked.
Angie Han, Mashable

Captain Marvel opens everywhere on March 8.


Captain Marvel (2019)

Adjusted Score: 104.011%
Critics Consensus: Packed with action, humor, and visual thrills, Captain Marvel introduces the MCU's latest hero with an origin story that makes effective use of the franchise's signature formula.
Synopsis: The story follows Carol Danvers as she becomes one of the universe's most powerful heroes when Earth is caught in... [More]
Directed By: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck

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