A Major Female Superhero Role (Just in Time for Women’s History Month)

Captain Marvel was released in the US on March 8, which just so happened to be the same date as International Women’s Day. It should come as no surprise that a movie with a dominant female role would be in tune with the month of March. CNN states that Marvel’s first movie starring a female superhero opened up in the domestic box office with $153 million. If that doesn’t seem like much to you then compare that to the $455 million the movie made globally in the same week! Even though Captain Marvel is racking in the numbers, some critics are still not convinced that it’ll be a huge success.

(Don’t worry, there will be no spoilers here! But if you haven’t yet checked out the movie, here is a link to the trailer.)

Marvel Studios has been up and running since the early 1990s, and has produced a number of memorable films based off Marvel Comic characters. The pressure was on when Captain Marvel was in the making. You don’t often see many women depicted as heroes with significant screen time. Sure, you have Shuri from Black Panther, Black Widow from Avengers, and Gamora from Guardians of the Galaxy. All of these women and more have been recently placed front and center in their respective films. But when has there truly been a badass woman as a lead instead of being shoved to the sidelines? Screen Shot 2019-03-15 at 10.51.57 AM.pngBack in 2017 DC Films released Wonder Woman, and despite many doubts the film grossed over $821 million worldwide. Even though there was a hit TV show of the same name in the late 1970s, the debut of the DC film launched a movement of female empowerment. The Hollywood Reporter says, “ It shouldn’t have taken until 2017 for a major studio to hand over the reins of a big-budget blockbuster to a female director as well as a female star, and DC deserves credit for beating Marvel to the punch.” SYFY Wire explains the importance of this film is due to its major milestones. Not only was Wonder Woman the highest-growing film directed by women and the largest domestic opening film with a female director, but it was also the biggest opening for a comic book movie with a female lead. You can only imagine how many punches Captain Marvel was taking before it was even released.

Nonetheless, Captain Marvel has had many positive reviews since its release. Though some were and are hesitant to see the movie, both women and men alike are checking it out. As a woman, you are not obligated to like this film just because it stars a female lead. However, think of the representation that spotlights strong women in film. With this platform brings an understanding of the confidence and true power of women everywhere.  

It’s amazing to see more inclusivity and diversity on the screen, as well. Representation shows girls and women how they can take a stand and take action from their own perspective. It is movies like this that break from the traditional male lead, especially when it comes to superheroes. There have even been numerous cases of sexist post in regards to fake movie reviews.

Brie Larson, the woman who stars as Captain Marvel, has been doing wonders for gender equality through her role in the film. According to the Hollywood Reporter, after Larson was cast as Captain Marvel, she saw Wonder Woman in theaters. “As a kid, I wanted to be an adventurer," Larson says. "I wanted to be a smart-ass. I wanted to get my hands dirty. But it wasn't until being in the theater seeing Wonder Woman…[that] I was like, 'Why is this making me cry so much?' I realized 'cause I hadn't had that, and there was a kid in me that was like, 'Oh, my God. I can do that?'”

Whether you like the movie or not, Captain Marvel is another step forward in showcasing women in the superhero universe. All great stories have to start somewhere, after all.

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