review by Bobby Blakey
Now that Marvel’s Phase 3 has to come to an end and fans have been given some time to heal and refresh from the last 10 years of action, excitement and heart ache they are getting ready to kick off Phase 4. After a whole year delay Black Widow was finally released starring Scarlett Johansson, Florence Pugh, Rachel Weisz, and David Harbour. Could this latest entry be another win for the MCU as well as the well-deserved solo outing for Widow or will it fail to complete its mission?
Black Widow follows Natasha Romanoff who confronts the darker parts of her ledger when a dangerous conspiracy with ties to her past arises. Pursued by a force that will stop at nothing to bring her down, Natasha must deal with her history as a spy and the broken relationships left in her wake long before she became an Avenger.
This film was not only delayed due to the pandemic, but long overdue in general. For whatever reason they waited so long to finally give Johansson the proper solo outing for Natasha it is finally here and well worth the wait. Now some are unsurprisingly confused to where this story takes place given the events in End Game so to clear that up it is focusing mostly on Natasha after the events of Civil War. This allows us to not only dive into her own mythology but also an explanation to where the rest of the Avengers might be.
This film takes on a very similar tone to Winter Soldier as more of a spy thriller infused with a super-hero flick which is the only way it should be given Natasha’s history. Despite numerous connections and mentions of characters and events we already know happened they do a great job of keeping this film as its own thing that just exists in the same universe. It has a great balance between all the characters, the current story they are going with and diving into her past to give fans the
deeper connection with her we have been waiting for.
Johansson can play this character in her sleep at this point, but this is her best turn yet. She flawlessly carries the movie and showcases all the elements and layers we have come to love about her character. Right alongside her is Florence Pugh who holds her own to perfection. She is yet another strong female character that has depth and is just as fun to watch as Widow. The real scene stealer of the film for me though is David Harbour’s Red Guardian. He looks to be having a blast as a flawed hero of sorts that brings heart and humor to the role.
As expected there is a ton of action in the film with a lot of it more of the same awesome fighting like was showcased in Winter Soldier. I will have to say that they have stepped their game up even further this time around and really knocked the fights out of the park. There are a couple that use too many quick cuts and shaky cam, but still delivers. Everyone gets to get in on the action and all hold their own worthy of being in the MCU and stand side by side with the Widow herself.
If I had any issues it was the direction they went with Taskmaster which I will not reveal here. The character is a badass to watch and visually offering up some great moments just not sure I like some of the changes. That being said it is really my only issue with the film and I can honestly say that while Winter Soldier has always been my favorite of the entire MCU films this one ranks right up there with it above all others for me.
It goes without saying to remind you to stay through the credits for the surprise tag which promises yet more fun new directions in the MCU to come. In addition to the film this release offers up bonus content including bloopers, deleted scenes and featurettes taking fans behind bringing this long overdue film to life. Grab your copy of Black Widow available now on digital, 4K Ultra, Blu-ray and DVD from Marvel Studios.