By Sam Coles:
Scarlette Johansson has been in many roles over the years since she was a young teenager, but I would argue that she didn’t really explode onto the scene until she played the femme fatale spy and assassin Black Widow in 2010 in Iron Man 2. Fast forward 11 years she is playing her for the last time in the aptly named film Black Widow, where we get some background about her childhood and how she found herself to turn into the hero she became where she was taken in by The Avengers. Is the film any good? Yes, but let’s talk about it in more detail.
Black Widow takes places directly after the events of Captain America: Civil War, where Natasha Romanov is on the run from the American government because she aided Steve Rogers (Captain America) when he decided to do operations off the grid as well as assaulting the King of Wakanda (Black Panther). she does what she knows best from her past as a Russian spy, goes into hiding. It’s not long that she finds out the program that she was indoctrinated in The Widow Program is still going, where thousands of orphaned females are being brainwashed to become assassins to stir the political soup across the globe. She goes on a journey to find her family, to help take down The Widow Program.
Once again Scarlette Johansson is fantastic as the mysterious and ambiguous assassin Black Widow, what I like about her performance is that she doesn’t have to convey her feelings through meaningless exposition. She can shoot a glance and you get a general understanding of how she is feeling and what her motivation is, this can be anger, joy or overwhelming emotions of sadness she does have a decent amount of flexibility as an actress. Some would argue that she is flat or monotone, but that is the entire point of the character of Black Widow as she is not supposed to let emotions get in the way of the job, which makes the times when her emotions do get the better of her more captivating.
The supporting cast playing Natasha’s family is excellent too, especially David Harbour playing the Red Guardian. Every scene he is on screen is hilarious, it is a classic brutish character where he thinks with violence first then asks questions the next day after. I was grinning ear to ear when he was on screen, which onto the which was on point and didn’t feel forced. Natasha’s sister constantly ridicules her for a “poser” landing, as she thinks she chooses style over practicality it is perfect sibling rivalry in inappropriate situations. The film knows when to be serious and can get emotional in parts, however as I have discussed it knows when to change out the sad mask with a laughing one to add levity to the film.
Now onto the reason most watch Marvel films, the action! Is it any good? , as they tend to do most of it practically where they can add a sense of believability and brutality to the fights. The car chases are fast, frantic and over the top where it puts some modern Bond films to shame, where you see cars flip through the air and motorcyclists using car bonnets as spring boards. It had me on the edge of my seat the action sequences, as a lot of the fights in this film compared to other Marvel films were really bone crunching in parts, which made question the 12+ age rating.
Overall, I think Black Widow was a good film, it gave us a more of an insight into Natasha Romanov’s backstory as a child and it is a fine end to Scarlette Johansson’s performance of the character. Not only that it was great to be back in a cinema watching films again, always a plus. A film I recommend you go and see.