CAPTAIN MARVEL (2019)

dir. Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck. Oppressively dull. Brie Larson shifts from clinically bored to mild irritation. It is incomprehensible how the lead actor in a major movie could be so poorly directed, or so disengaged. It seriously looks like they recorded Brie Larson reading the script for the first time, and shouted “Ok, and CUT! PERFECT! PRINT IT!” Ed Wood style. There are never any stakes or tension, even for a Marvel movie. The only scenes with any emption are driven by the wonderful Ben Mendelsohn. Djimon Hounsou is wasted. Annette Bening is wasted. Lee Pace is in the movie, I guess? This feels like a fake movie within a mildly better movie — the jokes are not funny, the dramatic scenes are not emotional, the action is not exciting. On every level, this is a bad film, even for the absurdly low standard that Marvel movies have set for themselves. If you want to see more Ben Mendelsohn, check out David Caesar’s films, MULLET (2001) and IDIOT BOX (1996).