When everyone watched the conclusion of the scene on Vormir in Avengers: Endgame, it was believed that Natasha Romanoff aka the Black Widow would no longer be seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). It was heartbreaking to watch and some say it was sadder than the death of the founding member of the franchise, Tony Stark aka Iron Man. While Endgame is, no doubt probably the best film in the whole MCU, many fans were upset about one thing. Stark gets a tearful and honorable farewell (as he should) while Romanoff’s death is mourned for only 2-3 minutes. Well, after over a year with three delays, fans finally have a chance to say goodbye to the only female hero of the founding original six Avengers.
Black Widow is the 24th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and features Scarlett Johansson reprising the role of Natasha Romanoff for the ninth (and perhaps the final) time. Also returning from various MCU movies is William Hurt as Thaddeus Ross. Newcomers are Florence Pugh (Fighting with my Family), David Harbour (Stranger Things), and Rachel Weisz (The Mummy). In the movie, taking place immediately after we last saw her in Captain America: Civil War and before the events in Avengers: Infinity War, Natasha Romanoff is on the run from the government for violating the Sokovia Accords. But when an old conspiracy tied to her hidden past resurfaces, she is forced to face it, and in doing so, facing her real family.
While Scar Jo gives a terrific performance as the former Russian assassin as usual, David Harbour and Florence Pugh are the screen stealers, especially the latter. Whenever the Red Guardian (played by Harbour) is on screen, it is almost impossible not to smile. Everything out of his mouth is hilarious. Whether he’s being serious or meaning to be funny, he’s great. Now I’d actually like to see him take on Captain America in a fight. Yelena Bolova (played by Pugh) is the one who makes this movie. She’s funny and could give Black Widow one heck of a fight.
Natasha’s whole family is played well and they are exactly what you’d think they would be like. Always bringing up the Avengers and pointing out things that Marvel fans (including me) have failed to notice in previous movies, like the pose Black Widow makes during a fight in previous movies. The story is good and an entertaining one and connects great to MCU movies released in the past.
Speaking of past movies, this movie takes place in it. We get to see what Natasha was up to before we see her with Captain America and the Falcon in Infinity War. Black Widow does answer the questions that some had in Infinity War, like where did she get that new hair style and color? Where did she get that awesome new suit? Other questions from past movies are answered too. This is a movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so of course you can’t see one movie without seeing and remembering all the others. Things mentioned and seen in past movies like The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron tied to the Black Widow’s story are brought up. One of which plays a big part in this movie.
Marvel Studios is no stranger when it comes to special effects and fight scenes. While the effects are good, what stands out perhaps more than anything in this film are the fight scenes. The sound and fight choreography when it comes to hand-to-hand combat might be the best it has ever been, in a long time.
The only con with this entry is its villain. While the character of Dreykov is pretty good, it’s the one comic book fans were looking forward to seeing that’s a bit of a disappointment. Hopefully, this isn’t the last of the Taskmaster. The classic villain is a bit of a letdown in this movie. Hopefully the character returns and audiences get what they want from him.
Natasha Romanoff has been with us for the past eleven years. After such a long journey and seeing her in nine different movies, it is hard to say goodbye. Stark gets his farewell in Avengers: Endgame, as he should because if it weren’t for him, we wouldn’t have this wonderful interconnected film franchise. But Romanoff is special too. Not only is she a founding member of the Avengers in the MCU but for three years she was the only woman on the team, probably being an inspiration to young girls everywhere.
Even if she isn’t an inspiration, she is still one of the most beloved characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and comic book history. It’s very hard for her not to be in someone’s top ten MCU heroes list. When the last ten minutes of the movie plays, you can’t not wonder what’s to happen to her in Endgame. But with something sad, comes something good. Of course, stay till after the credits to see how this movie connects to more entries in the franchise. All in all, Black Widow is a solid entry to the franchise. It’s greatly paced, keeps the viewer entertained and satisfied, and gives us the closure we all needed two years ago.
A film enthusiast, I’m a senior year student at the Purdue University Northwest in Hammond, Indiana, set to graduate in May 2023. My degree is in Broadcasting with minors in Journalism and Advertising.