Black Panther ★★

This is the first MCU movie I've seen since The Avengers, and it appears I'm just as apathetic/antipathic about their "inspired" phase than I was about most of the early films. The action is frankly uninteresting and shot in a way that does a bad job actually drawing attention to it, greatly dulling the impact. Character interactions are largely uninteresting, as are the characters themselves (few are differentiated at all from each other, let alone from stock character paradigms. That said, Michael B. Jordan's Killmonger is not only a commendable performance but also a rare example of a Marvel villain having a well-defined, differentiated ideology. This doesn't segue into the brilliant conversation about socialism that many viewers seem to have identified, but it does allow for a relatively complex relationship between hero and villain that results in a climax with the film's more entertaining action (visually and tonally) and interesting emotional dynamics.