Captain America: Civil War Review

Chris Evans -Steve Rogers / Captain America    Robert Downey Jr.  Tony Stark / Iron Man    Scarlett Johansson   Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow    Sebastian Stan   Bucky Barnes / Winter Soldier    Anthony Mackie   Sam Wilson / Falcon    Don Cheadle Lieutenant James Rhodes / War Machine    Jeremy Renner   Clint Barton / Hawkeye    Chadwick Boseman   T'Challa / Black Panther    Paul Bettany  Vision    Elizabeth Olsen   Wanda Maximoff / Scarlet Witch    Paul Rudd  Scott Lang / Ant-Man    Emily VanCamp  Sharon Carter    Tom Holland Peter Parker / Spider-Man    Daniel Brühl Zemo    Frank Grillo  Brock Rumlow / Crossbones

Chris Evans -Steve Rogers / Captain America
Robert Downey Jr. Tony Stark / Iron Man
Scarlett Johansson
Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow
Sebastian Stan
Bucky Barnes / Winter Soldier
Anthony Mackie
Sam Wilson / Falcon
Don Cheadle Lieutenant James Rhodes / War Machine
Jeremy Renner
Clint Barton / Hawkeye
Chadwick Boseman
T’Challa / Black Panther
Paul Bettany Vision
Elizabeth Olsen
Wanda Maximoff / Scarlet Witch
Paul Rudd Scott Lang / Ant-Man
Emily VanCamp Sharon Carter
Tom Holland Peter Parker / Spider-Man
Daniel Brühl Zemo
Frank Grillo Brock Rumlow / Crossbones

 

Is it really a Civil War?

Captain America: Winter Soldier was a giant box office hit in 2014.  Audiences came out of theaters wanting more Captain America movies. Marvel Studios announced later that year that Tony Stark (Iron Man) would be a character  in the next Captain America Film in order to adapt the Civil War storyline from the Marvel Comics.  The studio added more excitement from audiences when they announced Black Panther and Spider-Man would be added as characters.  Captain America stars Chris Evans as Captain America but also Robert Downey Jr. (Tony Stark), Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther), Tom Holland (Spider-man), and the rest of Avengers including Paul Rudd (Ant-Man) and Sebastian Stan (Bucky Barnes aka. The Winter Soldier).

It’s been one year since the fight with Ultron has leveled Sokovia, and the Avengers are solid cohesive team that are hunting Crossbones (Brock Rumlow, Frank Grillo). They track his location to Lagos and several Wakandas are killed when they attempt to capture him. The United Nations comes agreement called the Sokovia Accords. A governmental panel would have the authority to send the Avengers on missions, and the Avengers have no say where they go.  Naturally, this agreement causes a rift between Captain America and Iron Man. The situation becomes more complicated when Bucky Barnes (the Winter Soldier) plants a bomb and assassinates the King of Wakanda.  Captain America must decide to sign the Sokovia Accords or break the law by taking Bucky Barnes into custody, the Winter Soldier and his longtime friend, since vigilantes are outlawed.

The negatives of the film are that Vision and War Machine have little to do in the film. Vision was the coolest character in Avengers: Age of Ultron suffers a downgrade in this film. He has very little screentime, and his motivations for signing the Slovakian Accords are never fully explained. War Machine (Don Cheadle) joins the Slovakian Accords but his motivations are not fully explained either on signing the Slovakian Accords. The audience doesn’t know if it is his history with the government, his friendship with Tony Stark, or if he feels like it is the right thing to do. The other negative about Civil War is the government forcing superheroes to sign the accords. Personally, the introduction to the government wanting to control superheroes feels rushed. The film never fully resolves conflict between the two teams about governmental control.  Marvel Studios and the filmmakers should have waited to introduce this storyline by itself or waited after Thanos shows up in Avengers: Infinity Wars.  The two sides square off once and it’s a disappointment to only see them fight once.

Captain America: Civil War has a ton of positives and there are too many to describe. The two main themes are friendship and revenge. Bucky Barnes and Steve Rodgers have a friendship that stands the test of time.  The Winter Soldier is highly sought after in the movie for reasons. The government thinks he is a terrorist or Black Panther blames him for killing his father.  With all of this going on, Captain America finds himself in the middle trying to protect his friend and his belief puts him wrong side of the law.  Iron Man, Zemo (Daniel Bruhl), and Black Panther are vengeance driven throughout the film. The three characters take specific actions to retaliate something or someone based on their current beliefs or that happened in their past. The revenge plot is really the backbone of the storyline.

Spider-man and Black Panther are perfect additions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Spider-man is nailed perfectly by Tom Holland, and he nailed all of Spider-man’s mannerisms, attitudes, sarcasm, and background. Peter Parker is a dumpster driver in the movie. Tony Stark even makes fun of him for that.  Tom Holland and Robert Downey Jr. have perfect chemistry together onscreen while playing Spider-man and Iron Man. Downey Jr. will appear in Spider-man: Homecoming next year because of the chemistry with Holland. Black Panther was the other great audition.  Chadwick Boseman had a distinct African accent. He would command the audience’s attention while on screen.  He played a vengeful forceful Black Panther.  He and Holland made the audiences buzz about their performances while leaving the theater.

Overall, Captain America: Civil War is a good movie with a lot of suspenseful action. Spider-man is so perfectly played to a T along with Black Panther.  The film does a great job in making audiences understand different character’s point of views. Captain America: Civil War gets a 4 out of 5.

Captain America 2: The Winter Solider Review

Captain America 2: the Winter Solider by Marvel  Director by Joe and Anthony Russo Starting Chris Evans

Captain America 2: the Winter Solider by Marvel
Director by Joe and Anthony Russo
Starting Chris Evans

My mom and I walked out of the theater last night after seeing Captain America 2: The Winter Solider,  and I asked her was ” Is this movie better than the Avengers.” She answered “Yes” with no hesitation.  My mother is a huge superhero fan like I am. I often tell people that I’m my mother’s child. My mom has passed down a lot of amazing qualities and interests to me. One of those interests are being a fan of comic books. Batman will be always my number 1 with Spider-man a close second. The more I think about her comment “this movie is better than the Avengers.” I totally agree that Captain America 2 super succeeded every expectation I had going to into it and for that reason makes this movie better than the Avengers.

The Avengers is a hard movie to beat. Joss Whedon, the director, created a movie that has fun witty dialogue, a excellent narrative, great character development, amazing villain, and great action sequences. Joss Whedon pulls an ace out of his hat making the Avengers; however, Joe and Anthony Russo, directors of Winter Solider, pull two aces out of their hats. The movie has better fight sequences,  a better compelling narrative, the character development is spectacular, and the villains are amazing. The Winter Solider develops as an character, and he is the main villain. Here’s a quick synopsis of the movie.

After the Avengers, Steve Rodgers (Chris Evans) finds himself working with Shield. He is teamed up with Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and a swat commander, Brock Rumlow (Frank Grillo) on most missions.  He finds himself at odds because the 21st century extremely different than the 1940’s.  He often talks to a veteran’s counselor named Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie).  Captain America’s first mission of the movie is to rescue hostages held by pirates, and Black Widow is sent for a different reason to retrieve information.   Rodgers has a confrontation with Nick Fury , director of Shield and played by Samuel L. Jackson, about eliminating threats before they happen. Come to find out, Nick Fury has a confrontation with the Winter Solider and pays for it dearly. Cap and Widow go digging deep into Shield’s history and find out there’s a plot deadlier than Shield knows about. The agency to hunt down Cap and Widow because is comprised by another force.

The Winter Solider has beautiful story telling. It’s not a big thinking movie but it’s a lot like a Jason Bourne movie with Marvel characters.  The story is so beautifully crafted but there are so many easter eggs that give hints to what will come in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  The Russo brothers also gave a lot of time to character development and interaction.  Captain America and Black Widow would be on a mission, fighting bad guys but carry on a conversation about his dating life during the fight scenes. Sam Wilson, played by Anthony Mackie, has so much witty dialogue with Steve Rodgers and the duo have a lot of screen time. Sidekicks are not popular but the Wilson character allows movie producers to have a template on how to make these characters work. I felt connected to every character in the story. I saw their motivations and impressions of what the world should be.  Nick Fury believes that the world is full of threats, and Shield should neutralize them before they can happen. Alexander Pierce his boss, Robert Redford, believes people need a strong hand to feel safe and can’t make decisions on their own.  Captain America of course still stands for freedom, individuality, and personal responsibility. He believes in a system laws and rules which conflicts with Nick Fury’s  and Alexander Pierce’s ideals.  The Winter Solider, Sebastian Stan, has character development but i don’t want to spoil it.

The Winter Solider excelled in attributes that make action and spy thrillers such wonderful movies. The special effects were killer but sometimes i noticed little flaws in the CGI. I had to really think about them after I saw them. The best part of the movie was the fight choreography. The fight choreography had everything that I have wanted in a superhero movie. It was flawless and it felt like you were watching a lightsaber fight from Star Wars but with martial arts. The choreography is everything you want in a Batman movie but never get.  Captain America is no martial artist but when you have an unbreakable shield then it doesn’t matter. The visuals and sounds of the shield banging off multiple people and walls were excellent. The shield also makes a sound when Cap attaches it to his back.

Overall, Captain America 2: The Winter Solider gets a 5/5. I will post a spoiler blog about the movie  sometime in the next few weeks so people have a chance to see this film. You don’t need to watch the first Captain America to understand this movie. The first post credits scene teases the Avengers 2: Age of Ultron. There are several mentions of characters that will be in upcoming Marvel films so listen for those.