Brie Larson’s ‘Unicorn Store’: 4 Reasons to Watch the ‘Captain Marvel’ Star’s Directorial Debut
Captain Marvel star Brie Larson has another new film out before Avengers: Endgame. Her directorial debut, Unicorn Store, is now available for streaming on Netflix. The movie, which was filmed in 2016, is very different from anything you’ll see in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But if you know Larson’s work, that’s not surprising. Here’s why you might want to consider checking out this cute movie.
Unicorn Store is an easy watch
While Marvel movies are intense, action-filled epics with humor sprinkled in, Unicorn Store is entirely simplistic and fun. Larson stars as Kit, an artist who fails out of school because no one gets her youthful, colorful style. She takes an office job and tries to assimilate to what it means to be an adult, but she can’t help but falter when she gets a very unique invitation that leads her to her dream.
It taps into the Millennial experience
It’s common practice to rag on the Millennial generation these days (which, for those who simply use the word as synonymous with young people, is defined as those born in the 15-20 years before the turn of the century — who are adults now). But because Larson falls perfectly in the confines of the generation, she is able to channel the story through that lens.
There are little nods to the past, like Care Bears. However, the real message is deeper: Kit is on the precipice of adulthood, but still clinging to her childhood dreams. Unicorn Store really taps into that feeling of arrested development and the push to “grow up” while you still have no idea what that means. It’s a timeless concept but done with special care to appear to Millennials.
The cast is spectacular
In addition to Larson, there’s no shortage of household names in the film. Joan Cusack and Bradley Whitford play Kit’s well-meaning, health-conscious parents, who don’t quite understand her the extent of her creativity. And of course, there’s Larson’s Captain Marvel and Kong: Skull Island co-star Samuel L. Jackson as the mysterious Salesman.
You’ll likely recognize many other faces in Unicorn Store. Annaleigh Ashford (Masters of Sex) plays Kit’s jealous co-worker, Crystal; Hamish Linklater (Legion) is her creepy boss, Gary; and Martha MacIsaac (Superbad) and Ryan Hansen (Veronica Mars) portray Kit’s work friends Sabrina and Brock, respectively. Karan Soni (Deadpool) has a supporting role as Kevin, and newcomer Mamoudou Athie shines as Kit’s new friend, Virgil.
Larson pulls off an impressive feat
While plenty of directors appear in their own movies, few manage to balance the starring role with their behind-the-scenes duties. Especially not on their first try. Larson is a veteran of the industry and has obviously had the chance to learn from many incredible directors, and it shows.
Unicorn Store, which first aired at Toronto Film Festival in Sept. 2017, wasn’t picked up until Jan. 2019. There’s no chance the timing of this was a coincidence: Netflix saw the hype around Captain Marvel and Larson herself, which is why it decided to buy her movie. Unicorn Store is, like Kit, the little engine that could — it took a long time and a lot of bold moves to get its whimsical heart across.