Scarlett Johansson and Florence Pugh in Marvel's Black Widow.

First Reactions to Black Widow Are Overwhelmingly Positive

Critics are praising Florence Pugh and Scarlett Johansson's performances.

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Ever since Scarlett Johansson made her big screen debut as Natasha Romanoff in 2010’s Iron Man 2, fans have been waiting for a Black Widow standalone movie. Besides Hawkeye, Black Widow is the only O.G. Avenger not to have her own solo film, an absence that became all the more glaring as the MCU expanded into nearly two dozen films and series. At long last, after a decade of development, the Black Widow movie finally arrived in 2020 … only to be delayed for over a year thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. But now that life is (somewhat) resuming normalcy, Black Widow will FINALLY hit theaters and Disney+ on July 9.

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The film was screened for critics last week, and the first reactions have been overwhelmingly positive. Many are praising Florence Pugh’s introduction as Yelena Belova, as well as Scarlett Johansson’s final performance as Natasha. The film also received raves for its fight sequences and world building. Black Widow is directed by Cate Shortland (Berlin Syndrome), who makes history as the first solo female director of an MCU film.

We’ve rounded up the first impressions of the film below:

Black Widow hits theaters and Disney+ premiere access July 9.

(image: Marvel Studios)

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Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.