Black Widow – First ImpressionsThe Dark Herald
Does NOT pass the Bechdel test.
I’ll do The Tomorrow War review first. There is no rush on this one. It’s not as bad as I thought it would be and since almost no one who reads this blog on the regular is going to see it anyway, Black Widow is now reprioritized. If I was going to rate it at Does Not Recommend I’d get it done today but it’s not that bad. I thought it was finally going to be the really awful Marvel film we’ve been expecting for a while and it isn’t. That is not to say that it is a particularly good movie either.
It is nowhere near as Woke as Disney marketing was desperately trying to make it out to be. And none of the women in it can go for five minutes without mentioning a man. So it fails the so-called Bechdel test.
Here is the big thing, I can’t help but wonder, what was the point of this movie?
If it had come out between Infinity War and End Game then it would have brought a lot more emotional impact to Natasha’s death. And the post-credit scene at Natasha’s grave would have fired up even more interest in End Game.
I suspect but cannot prove that after Wonder Woman came out something like this happened at Marvel. Feige gets a panicked called from Bob Iger telling him he absolutely has to make a superheroine movie. Kevin calls for pitch meetings and he fell in love with the Black Widow concept. But he also knew that he had to present an unworkable first idea to Iger so he could get Black Widow greenlit and back then Marvel didn’t own the rights to too many of their heroines. He went with the half-assed idea of Captain Marvel and pitched it high and to the left knowing that Iger would shoot it down. Iger instantly fell in love with Woke OP Carol Danvers.
And honestly, that should have been it for Black Widow but it clearly became a passion project for Kevin Feige. He really wanted this picture made.
Its most fundamental problem is that the character of Natasha is still dead. Her death hangs over the whole film like a pall of despair. Any triumphs she has are muted, any dangers she faces are pointless. The character died in 2019, no earlier and no later.
And this film does not set up much of anything for the films to come.
Since you are probably most curious about the post-credit teaser, here it is; Natasha’s sister, Yelena (AKA literally discount Black Widow) visits her sister’s grave, does sentimental things there, and then receives the assignment to kill the man responsible for her Natasha’s death, Hawkeye. Dun! Dun! Dun!
Ultimately, this film feels a bit like Schwarzenegger’s Last Action Hero, a film that would have been a mega-blockbuster just a few years before but now feels kinda dated. There is nothing here that you haven’t seen before and don’t know about already.