Monday, 24 June 2019

You want that instant gratification of a knife attack

I done did see Avengers Endgame and Captain Marvel, in that order, and ah geez I sure wish the first big Marvel female superhero flick was a lot better than it was, but I didn't really like the character and the story was a weird mish-mash of tropes from 1980s cinema, only set in the 1990s and with a dreadful soundtrack.  The action scenes are also really flat, too, and some of the superpowered stuff later in the movie just seems nonsensical or perfunctory, like the aliens that fire enough missiles at a planet to raze its surface, but they fire them at the one spot rather than all over the planet at different places.
Avengers Endgame was much better, but I can't really tell you why as it's a movie about time travel and featuring evil doubles and zero new ideas.  I've got this sense that I should be feeling shortchanged by it, but it's the capstone on a decade-long run of good-to-great movies that have seen the superhero genre revitalised into a cultural juggernaut, so you know, I had a generous disposition towards it going in and it failed to annoy me even though I'm pretty sure its "nothing matters" approach to time travel is the height of laziness, not least because after establishing at length that nothing matters, it introduces a character who says actually what you're going to do does matter, and both versions of time travel rules are treated as equally valid.  Eeeeeeeghhhhhh
It delivers on the Big Ass Fights front, and at least one character who I have found utterly, bafflingly popular over the years the franchise has been running its course bought the farm in an underwhelming way, and for that I was quite grateful.  Although this is the second movie in a row where a lady gets chucked off a cliff and the movie compensates with a really contrived lady fight sequence in the CGI finale, which reminded me of those terrible tv shows and movies from the 1990s which thought they were breaking new ground with a lady protagonist doing kung fu on men and they'd introduce the character in a really obnoxious way with like a guitar riff or something while she jumps in from off-screen saying a painfully bad line containing the word "boys"*, even though female action stars were not only a staple of low-budget US action movies for years, but they were even regular draws in conservative territories like mainland China to the point they started importing them.  You do this kind of thing nowadays and apparently it's not cheap and tacky, it's a bold assertion of your creative vision, so basically the "overwrought female badass intro sequence" is the equivalent of having a synth score.
Oh fiddlesticks I'm rambling again - well anyway I did like Endgame but I suspect it was more to do with over a decade's worth of goodwill in the bank more than it was a perfectly acceptable entertainment product.

* which was - oddly enough - how they introduced Spider-Gwen in Into The Spider-Verse, a single duff note in an otherwise great flick.

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