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In the current world of superhero movies, the Black Widow and Punisher characters are sort of reduced to secondary superheroes. It makes sense in that regard that there now finally is an animated movie in which they are given the opportunity to shine. But do they really? The movie is too much talk and not enough action in my opinion, which still may have been fine, if only the story was a more solid one.

It's actually hard to say what makes the story such a lacking one. It's probably the combination of several small problems, that together work out as a big problem for the movie. For one, I believe that every superhero movie needs to have a strong villain in it too. And no, this movie really doesn't have a very good or memorable main villain in it. Part of the problem also is that he doesn't get introduced into the story until the movie is halfway through already.

The movie is also lacking a strong and clear enough main conflict. So what was the main goal and objective again? At times the story works out more like a detective, in which our heroes have to investigate and infiltrate before they finally get to use their real skills and powers. It doesn't ever feels like the conflict in the movie is anything life-threatening or something that could destroy the world, or anything else along those lines. This perhaps is also due to the fact that the movie more often focuses on personal drama, rather than on its main big conflict and storyline.

And sp0ilerrr!!1! I also thought it was weird how this is a Black Widow and Punisher movie but it eventually are the avengers who come in to save the day...yet again. It gives the movie an excuse to put more popular and recognizable characters like Thor, Iron Man and the Hulk on the cover but I feel that all of this is pretty offensive to both the Black Widow and Punisher characters. It should have been just their movie in my opinion and there also truly was no real need for the avengers to show up in this movie.

The animation style is decent enough. It's definitely Japanese and you'll either like it or not but I do believe that most people should be able to appreciate it. After all, this is the type of animation style most of us geeks grew up with and it also does suits most of the characters and action in this particular movie well.

The voice acting is also pretty good. Again, nothing too impressive but it definitely suits the characters and no one sounds out of place in this movie, unlike some other Marvel and DC animated superhero movies that I have seen.

It's really not a very solid or entertaining animated superhero movie in my opinion. The story is too weak and dry and the main heroes aren't ever given enough real opportunities to shine. But oh well, maybe at least the true hardcore Marvel fans will take some more joy and pleasure out of this movie.

5/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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