Sunday, April 6, 2014

Review 256: "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"

In heroes we trust.
In Marvel too.


Shield and S.H.I.E.L.D.

      Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a 2014 superhero film and is the sequel to 2011's Captain America: The First Avenger. It is also the third film in Marvel's Phase Two and ninth Marvel Cinematic Universe film total. Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo (You, Me and Dupree) and written by Christopher Markus (Thor: The Dark World) and Stephen McFeely (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe) and follows Steve Rogers AKA Captain America (Chris Evans) as he faces off against the mysterious Winter Soldier (Sebastian Shaw), who attacked Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) in broad daylight. With the help of Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Sam Wilson AKA Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Agent 13 (Emily VanCamp), Captain America learns of something wrong with S.H.I.E.L.D. and finds himself questioning the leadership of Fury and Fury's friend Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford).

Ain't no party like a Captain America party,
cause everyone's dead!
The Best is Back

      While I know a lot of people might not expect it, The First Avenger was alway my favorite Marvel movie and my second favorite superhero movie ever (Spider-Man 2 can't be stopped!), so I was pretty completely and utterly excited to see Captain America back again. And while it might not be as good as the last film, The Winter Soldier is easily the best Marvel movie since the original America. Marvel here seems like they are just showing off. The Winter Soldier is essentially Marvel's take on the "dark and gritty" story that DC and Warner Bros. have been screwing everything up with and here Marvel has perfected it. The film takes a surprising number of risks. first and foremost it completely changing the genre of the original Captain America movie. Partway through the movie, a game-changing twist is revealed that really will affect the whole Marvel Cinematic Universe. Things are getting serious in this movie and yet, the film never loses Marvel's trademark sense of fun.

Anti-Villains and Bad Heroes

      No matter how serious the film actually gets, the directors never forget that it's about a man running around dressed like the American flag fighting a guy with a robot arm. There are plenty of fun moments in the film, mostly due to the great cast of the film. Evans still proves that Captain America is the best Marvel hero yet. Johansson is still just as bad-ass as she was in Avengers. But the new additions are any light-weights either. Redford takes a done-to-death role are makes in menacing and downright cool and the Winter Soldier is just awesome in every scene he's in, though oddly enough it's not too many. Mackie is great as the natural hero Falcon, a great new superhero to add to the Marvel roster. The film features some of the best villains in the Marvel movies as well. The Russo Brothers are naturals here, making a great looking movie with some of the best action I've seen all year. As little sense as it makes, Cap's shield is easily the best weapon in the whole Marvel Universe.

He's got MIND POWERS!!!
The Verdict

      I can't really say too much without giving a lot away, so likely I'll do a spoiler post later, but for now I'll just call Captain America: The Winter Soldier the best film of 2014 so far and one of the best superhero movies of all time and leave it at that. Great cast, great action, a great story and an awesome twist that'll change the Marvel CInematic Universe forever. What more could you want? Captain America: The Winter Soldier gets 6 stars out of 6.

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