Directed by Ryan Coogler
Based on comic book characters created by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby
Screenplay by Ryan Coogler, Joe Robert Cole
Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker
This film is the first 2018 addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This comic book movie is based on characters created by Stan Lee (Doctor Strange) and Jack Kirby (Ant-Man). The screenplay was written by Ryan Coogler (Creed) and Joe Robert Cole (Amber Lake). Coogler also took the job of director for the film. The cast is full of big names including Chadwick Boseman (42), Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave), Angela Bassett (What’s Love Got to Do With It), and Forest Whitaker (Platoon). Michael B. Jordan (Creed), Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey) also star in the movie.
This story is a bit of a shift in gears for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Following the somewhat comic romps of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Thor: Ragnarok this one heads back to a more serious tone. Coogler and Cole did a nice job getting the momentum going quickly in this one. The story also establishes a basis for the conflict in the film very early on. This provides a good basis for a lot of solid action and a good amount of drama. The dialogue in this one is good, and mixes in the real Xhosa language used in South Africa. This story is a bit predictable at times, but that’s true with most films of this genre. Overall, it’s a solid action film with some great moments.
The acting in this one is a collection of solid performances. Chadwick Boseman does a good job with the action and the emotion of the role. His connection with the other stars is also evident. Among the rest of the cast there isn’t a bad performance. Nyong’o, Bassett, Whitaker, Freeman, and Kaluuya all make the most of the opportunity with good performances.
One of the best performances in this one is Michael B. Jordan. He elevates his role with a level of anger and intensity that is matched only by Boseman. The entire cast does a good job with the Xhosa language and the accents of their characters. Overall, the cast does a really good job throughout the film.
Somewhat surprisingly the visuals are the aspect of the film that seem to fall short. The camera work is fine, but the CGI work feels rushed or possibly cheap. The fight sequences are cartoonish and the backdrops to some scenes feel muddy. It should be mentioned that some scenes are beautifully done, with colorful detail. These issues aren’t a huge problem since the story is solid, but they’re hard to ignore.
Thankfully the score to the film is another great aspect of the production. Between the orchestrated score and the soundtrack provided by a number of stars, this one is fun. Overall, this is a good movie that should appeal to all the fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I would also recommend this to fans of the stars. I give this one 3.8 out of 5 stars.