Black Widow is a superhero film based on Marvel Comics that features its comic character of the same name. Produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, it is the 24th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film was directed by Cate Shortland from a screenplay by Eric Pearson.
Set after the events of Captain America: Civil War (2016), the film sees the Black Widow on the run and forced to confront her past. After what happened in Avengers: Endgame (2019), I enjoyed seeing more of this character but sadly, Johansson said she was “going out on a high note” and was proud of the film, feeling that her work portraying Romanoff was now complete.
Black Widow opens in 1995 with what appears to be a normal American family living in Ohio In reality, dad (head of the household) is a Russian super-soldier Alexei Shostakov / Red Guardian (David Harbour) and mom is a Russian Black Widow / Melina Vostokoff (Florence Pugh). They work as Russian undercover agents, along with their two young Russian daughters, Natasha Romanoff (Scarlette Jonhassan) and Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh), and are responsible for stealing S.H.I.E.L.D. intel as instructed by their boss, General Dreykov (Ray Winstone). After raiding the Ohio community, the General has Natasha and Velena taken to the Red Room for training. Years pass, during which Alexei is betrayed and imprisoned in a Russian prison while Natasha escapes and defects to S.H.I.E.L.D.
I truly enjoyed Black Widow. The plot was pretty simple, Russian operatives against America, headed up by a mad general and his team of Black Widows. The adventure was exciting, fun, and all ends had closure. The cinematography was fabulous as Black Widow took you to many different countries including Norway, England, Budapest, Rome, and Maroco. There are many chase scenes that will have you on the edge of your seat. I loved the relationship Jonhassan enjoyed with the character Mason (O-T Fagbenle) who I recognized from the Handmaid’s Tale. Mason’s character services Natasha as Alfred services Batman. Additionally, Ever Anderson played Natasha as a youngster and speaks Russian. Anderson felt her background in taekwondo along with her gymnastics training was helpful to the role. Black Widow broke several pandemic box office records and has grossed over $371 million worldwide, becoming the fifth-highest-grossing film of 2021; it also made $67 million through Disney+ in its opening weekend. The film received generally positive reviews from critics, with praise for the performances, particularly those of Johansson and Pugh, and the action sequences. On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 80% based on 420 reviews, with an average rating of 6.9/10. The site’s critical consensus reads, “Black Widow‘s deeper themes are drowned out in all the action, but it remains a solidly entertaining standalone adventure that’s rounded out by a stellar supporting cast. Aside from appearing in theaters, Black Widow is also streaming on Disney+with premier access. Check It Out!
Posted in CURRENT MOVIE REVIEWS, STREAMING
Tagged (David Harbour) - Alexei Shostakov / Red Guardian, (Florence Pugh) - Yelena Belova / Black Widow, (Liani Samuel) (Michelle Lee) (Nanna Blondell) Red Room assassins, (O-T Fagbenle) - Rick Mason:, (Olga Kurylenko) - Antonia Dreykov / Taskmaster, (Rachel Weisz) - Melina Vostokoff / Black Widow, (Ray Winstone) - Dreykov, (Scarlett Johansson) - Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow, (William Hurt) - Thaddeus Ross, black widow
In my opinion, Civil War is the best Captain America to date. I absolutely loved this movie. It even addressed the over the top destruction I often talk about in these types of movies. In fact, you might say destruction, carelessness, and thoughtlessness are the themes of Civil War. It also addressed the diversity issue of giving Blacks better roles, although these types of movies are never nominated for Oscars. This third movie in the Captain America series starts out with Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) trying to displace a blast into the sky using telekinesis. However, a nearby building is destroyed killing several Wakandan humanitarian workers. This causes the US Secretary of State, Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross (William Hurt) to expedite preparation of the Sokovia Accords that will establish a United Nations panel to oversee and control the Avengers as well as the Superhuman Registration Act. Due to the deaths of innocent by-standers and guilt about Ultron’s creation and Sokovia’s destruction, Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.) supports the Accords. Steve Rogers/Captain America (Chris Evans) however, places his faith and judgement in himself and the team rather than the government. The Accords causes a major conflict between the two leaders and they end up so divided, they go off in separate directions to fight the good fight. NOTE: [The TV series, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. makes mention of the Accords as do the coming attractions of the X-men.] In the meanwhile, at a conference in Vienna where the Accords are to be ratified, a bomb is detonated killing King T’Chaka (John Kani) of Wakanda. Security footage indicates the bomber is Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), who T’Chaka’s son, T’Challa/Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) vows to kill. Information provided by Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp), who is the niece of Captain America’s deceased girlfriend, Peggy Carter, informs Rogers of Barnes’ whereabouts and the government’s intention to kill him. Rogers decides to apprehend Barnes himself, since Barnes is his childhood friend and war comrade. Barnes is brainwashed, his handler has been killed and a book containing a series of words that allows one to totally control him is being sought after by the killer. This is just the beginning of an exciting 2 and a half hour movie. Stark and Rogers really go at it, forming two independent teams. James “Rhodey” Rhodes/War Machine (Don Cheadle), Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), Scott Lang/Ant Man (Paul Rudd), Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Sam Wilson/Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Android: Vision (Paul Bettany) and Brock Rumlow/Crossbones (Frank Grillo) make up some other participants of the two opposing teams. Helmut Zemo (Daniel Brühl; is a Sokovian Colonel turned terrorist obsessed with defeating the Avengers), Aunt May Parker (Marisa Tomei; plays Spider-Man’s Aunt), Miriam Sharpe (Alfre Woodard; is a grieving mother who lost her son and blames Stark. Howard Stark (John Slattery; is Tony Stark’s father) and Maria Stark (Hope Davis; is Tony Stark’s mother). We learn what really happened to Stark’s parents — it wasn’t very pretty and didn’t make matters any better between the super heroes.
As usual, I’ve said enough and have to stop at this point in order not to give away any more of this fascinating story. I can only say there is so much more to come. I found Captain America: Civil War very interesting and highly recommend that you see it on the big screen. Even though I saw it in Real 3D, I didn’t really see a need for it. Your time will be well worth spending to see Civil War. The acting is brilliant, the story is excellent and the outcome is great.
Posted in DVD MOVIE REVIEWS
Tagged ant-man, anthony mackie, black panther, black widow, captain america: civil war, chadwick boseman, chris evans, crossbones, don cheadle, emily vancamp, falcon, frank grillo, Iron Man, james rhodes, john kani, king t'chaka, natasha romanoff, paul rudd, peter parker, robert downing jr, rumlow, sam wilson, scarlett johansson, scott lang, sharon carter, spider man, Steve rogers, t'challa, the accords, tom holland, tony stark, war machine