Film Fanatics: ‘The Marvels’ fails to marvel audiences

The three superheroes show off their strengthened powers. Photo courtesy of Popverse


“Film Fanatics” focuses on the latest and greatest cinema has to offer. Ranging from the newest movies in theaters to familiar favorites, enjoy thoughtful reviews that inspire further reflection or several rewatches. Read on to discover a new favorite film

Superhero fatigue is plaguing the nation and the box office. Audiences are tired of being introduced to a new superhero and forced to learn how their story fits in the grand scheme of that cinematic universe. The newest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), “The Marvels”, fails to break this streak and presents a convoluted, unmemorable movie. 

After her leading role in “Captain Marvel”, Brie Larson returns as the titular character, exploring her journey to make amends with her rocky past. After a collision with a wormhole, Captain Marvel’s powers become entangled with two familiar faces, Captain Rambeau — portrayed by Teyonah Parris — and Ms. Marvel — portrayed by Iman Vellani, which causes them to switch places when their powers are used. Forced to work together, the three superheroes must team up to face Dar-Benn, portrayed by Zawe Ashton, a villain determined to restore peace to her planet at the cost of destroying the entire universe. 

“The Marvels” tanked at the box office due to bad press, lack of promotion due to the SAG/AFTRA strike, and ultimately, superhero fatigue. The movie only grossed $47 million opening weekend compared to Captain Marvel’s opening profit of $154 million

It is refreshing to see increased diversity in Marvel movies with an almost all-women-led cast. Before “Black Panther” was released in 2018, every Marvel movie had a white male in the title role. Now, Marvel represents a wide variety of voices and perspectives, redefining what it means to be a superhero. “The Marvels” is a great step in the right direction for Marvel and the movie industry as a whole. 

Iman Vellani is the break-out star, injecting life and energy into this movie. Her character Kamala Khan offers a joyous vibrancy that balances the sternness of her two counterparts, Larson’s Danvers and Parris’ Rambeau. Her bubbly personality saves this movie from being a complete flop. 

The beauty of the early-day Marvel movies was the callbacks to other properties within the same cinematic universe. These small moments were few and far between, giving audiences just enough to pique their interest. However, Marvel started to utilize “fan service,” or intentionally adding moments into a movie for the sole purpose of pleasing fans, in almost every scene in their movies. The original plot of the movie gets lost in favor of introducing the next character or setting up the next conflict. “The Marvels” falls victim to this phenomenon, adding unnecessary cameos and completely shifting the tone in the conclusion to establish the next phase of the MCU. 

The movie attempted to add comedic moments, but those additions did not align with the established tone of the movie, changing from upbeat and joyous to serious within the same scene. Captain Marvel’s character development felt disjointed, and the subplot with Nick Fury and Kamala’s family did not fit within the scheme of the movie. 

Marvel needs to reevaluate their business model of quantity over quality if they want to keep their existing fan base. In 2023 alone, Marvel has already released “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania”, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3”, and “The Marvels” alongside TV shows like “Loki” and “Secret Invasion”. Their overabundance of releases has been met with mediocre reviews. Hopefully, Marvel can realize the error of their ways before they lose all of their fans. 

If audiences want to watch at least forty hours worth of movies and TV shows to barely grasp the background information of this movie, then go for it. However, “The Marvels” might be better enjoyed in the comfort of one’s home with easy access to Google. 

“The Marvels” is currently out in theaters and will be streaming soon on Disney+.


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