She's here to kick ass and chew gum... and she's out of gum.
When I'm on long trips and I don't have anything to read (or I've finished what I'm reading and don't have anything else ready) I think about a lot of different things. My current escape is a hypothetical Black Widow movie. What would it be about? What would it look like? (Why hasn't it happened yet?!) @Luci546 posed this question and I encourage everyone to share:
Thank you @paulisaghost for being the original inspiration!
It takes place after Winter Soldier.
But before Age of Ultron. At the end she says "I blew all my covers. I got to go figure out a new one" and this movie follows through on that promise. She's spent years pretending to be someone else, and in Winter Soldier she's motivated to figure out who she really is. Which means that she needs to go backwards, and find out who she was.
She's a rogue agent.
She doesn't have the pristine track record that Captain America does; nor does she have Iron Man's budget. Without S.H.I.E.L.D. she has no authority. She's got to get by on her skills and her luck. And the more she uncovers, the more she begins to remember.
What's worse than forgetting?
The memories that they replaced the true ones with. The more she goes back, the more she finds. Splinter cells with similar training programs to the one she endured. Sleeper agents with Natasha's memories implanted in their subconscious. There's so much that still need to be unraveled, so much she has to do before she can wipe out all that red...
There's the constant threat of recapture.
But she's not a frightened child anymore. She knows herself and she knows who she wants to be.