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Marvel Studios’ Captain Marvel – Trailer

The first trailer for Marvel Studios Captain Marvel dropped this morning, and it you’re unfamiliar with the character you’ll likely have no idea what’s going on.

The trailer has little in the way of any sort of narrative thrust, though you do learn that Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) is a warrior and has flashbacks of her life on earth and she’s really mean to old women on trains.

A de-aged Nick Fury (Sam Jackson) and Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) make an appearance (the technology to make actors younger seems to be virtually flawless, though up to this point we’ve only seen it used on men. I wonder if this is because there’s have been no need to use it on women yet or because of technical shortcomings. I don’t recall it being used on Michelle Pfeiffer in Ant-Man And The Wasp, then again she’s aged so well it’s hard to tell).

As far as first trailers go, it’s a bit overwhelming, and I expect that followup trailers will begin to make sense of the chaos.

Sun Sets on Cavill’s Superman?

Apparently, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Henry Cavill is out as Superman.

There are quite a few reasons stated (scheduling issues, problems negotiating a cameo in Warner Bros upcoming Shazam!, delays in ramping up a sequel to 2013’s Man of Steel, etc) and while–if this is true because it bears repeating that this is not been confined by Cavill or his representation–for my money how egregiously bad Superman had been interpreted has more than a little to do with it.

And speaking of Man Of Steel, anyone with a modicum of vision could see that was where the problems began.

As a Superman movie it was a pretty good alien invasion movie, which is problematic because such a controversial approach to the character–by the way, if you’re generating controversy producing a Superman movie you’re already doing something wrong–alienated huge swaths of moviegoers, tainting everything that followed.

And I have said before that the current incarnation of the DCEU needs to go, but I had always hoped that Cavill hung around because you can see the optimism, the potential for hope embodied in his performance being subsumed by the ego of a director who clearly never truly understood the material he was working with.

Iron Fist, Season Two – Review

I binged–a word I have every intention of continuing the use of–the second season of Marvel’s Iron Fist last week and it was…okay.

It course-corrects from first season, which seemed to spend as much time with Joy and Ward Meechum (Jessica Stroup and Tom Pelphrey) as it did with Danny Rand/Iron Fist (Finn Jones).

One issue that remains–perhaps the most pressing the problems–is the approach to the entire series (one shared with Marvel’s Luke Cage, it’s worth mentioning) in that it keeps doubling down on the realism, when they should be leaning into the more fantastical elements of both characters.

Here’s an example of what I mean. Here’s the trailer for The Five Deadly Venoms which I include because this is the sort of action that should inspire Marvel’s Iron Fist.

And sure, it’s a bit over the top, but that’s the point. It should be! We’re talking about people with abilities beyond those of mortal men.

The filmmakers shouldn’t be be afraid to lean into that (and sure, such an approach would likely facilitate greater use of stunt people, but I think it would be worth it).

The Villainy of Ben Mendelsohn

Is it even possible that Ben Mendelsohn can play anything but a villain? I’m admittedly not too familiar with his filmography–I first noticed the actor from Netflix’s Bloodline (2015-2017) where he was less an antagonist than just troubled–though the next thing I caught him in was 2016’s Rogue One where as Admiral Krennic he was so villainous that if he had a mustache he would likely have twirled it, Snidely Whiplash-style.

He supposedly was in 2012’s The Dark Knight (I assume his role was a relatively minor one because I don’t remember seeing him) though I suspect I’ve seen him more than I think because he’s been appearing in movies since the early 1980’s.

I bring him up because Entertainment Weekly has just released some photos from Marvel Studios upcoming Captain Marvel with Mendelsohn as–you guessed it–a villain.

I’d be worried he was being typecast I’d it weren’t for the fact that he’s so prolific.

Here’s he’s playing the leader of the shape-shifting Skrulls.

Marvel’s Iron Fist – Season 2 Trailer

Netflix dropped the trailer for the second season of Marvel’s Iron Fist a few hours ago, and it looks… okay.

I don’t mean that to imply that I didn’t enjoy it or Iron Fist’s first season–I did–though I thought the Season Two trailer didn’t necessarily give enough new information to intrigue me (particularly as someone who’s already seen Season One) while the first season had many great moments though overall suffered from the wrong emphasis, by which I mean Iron Fist/Danny Rand felt like a secondary character in his own story.

I hope this time around they embrace the martial arts over the more dramatic aspects of Rand’s story because when you watch a series centered around a master of the martial arts, it should go without saying that there needs to be more martial arts.

Constantine: City Of Demons – Trailer

I’ve never thought that Matt Ryan’s portrayal of John Constantine was a particularly good one, though I don’t blame him more than the casting. For a start, Constantine is the comics is physically lanky and more roguish than Ryan played him.

Ryan says all the right things, but never quite does so convincingly.

Then there’s his voice, which if you haven’t seen his former series or DC’s Legends Of Tomorrow, sounds rougher-edged and ‘lower class’–whether one wants to accept it or not, there are variations on a British accent, most of which stem from where in the United Kingdom you grew up as well as whether or not you were rich or poor–than perhaps it should be.

Though perhaps most importantly, Constantine should be extremely world-weary. He’s seen and knows things that would send the average person gibbering in terror, yet he carries the burden despite the costs to himself and potentially the people he cares for.

As I implied, I never felt the desperation (and the barely concealed desire for normalcy) from Matt Ryan’s characterization.

A (Partial) Visual History of Iron Man Armor in the Movies

As a huge fan of the MCU’s Iron Man (the image below this text is from my collection) I had never heard of the Stan Lee Museum Popup, though luckily someone a bit more fortunate was able to attend past these pictures to me.

Below are replicas of various Iron Man armors from the films.

Mark IIron Man (2008)

Mark IIIron Man (2008)

Mark IIIIron Man (2008)

Mark VIIron Man 2 (2010)

Mark XLIIIron Man 3 (2013)

Mark XLIIIAvengers: Age Of Ultron (2015)

Mark XLVICaptain America: Civil War (2016)

Thodey’s armor, despite being based on Iron Man, is visually a different beast entirely with a more purposeful, military thrust more interested in form following function, making Stark’s suit gaudy by comparison.

War Machine

And while the statue’s based may say ‘The Avengers’  War Machine wasn’t in that movie (though he did appear in the Iron Man movies, Avengers: Age of Ultron and Avengers: Infinity War).

And I’m guessing this variant of his suit is either from Iron Man 2 or 3 (I thought it was bulkier in  Avengers: Age of Ultron and Infinity War.

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