Imagine the Marvel films are our Solar System. Thor 2 would be Saturn. The upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy would probably be Pluto (yes I’m counting Pluto).
Captain America: The Winter Soldier is the Sun. The events of this movie will have far reaching consequences that will change the course of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It’s a game changer. It’s also the best Marvel have yet offered us.
Part spy film. Part thriller. Part Comic Book. A true sequel to both The First Avenger and The Avengers that juggles the past and the future extremely well.
With his action figure physique and earnest (yet far less naive) attitude Chris Evans fits the character extremely well. This is a story full of deception and intrigue, which works to further enhance Captain America’s virtuous nature. His questioning of Nick Fury’s and SHIELD’S methods on tackling situations mirrors our world, and lends the film extra weight. The good guys aren’t always good guys.
It’s always good to see Black Widow (yes), and the relationship between the two is a large part of the films success. Whilst Rogers encourages Romanoff to live a more truthful life she is a constant reminder that the world isn’t clearly black and white. As the two work together we find out a little more of Natasha’s history too (A Black Widow film in the future perhaps?). I do have to wonder where Hawkeye is throughout all this though. Surely he’d feel a bit put out with his best buddy going on an adventure with someone else?
Newcomer Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) not only provides another set of ridiculous arms (seriously, if you have body issues this is not the film for you), but also mental support. As an ex-paratrooper he is only too aware of the difficulties faced by soldiers adapting to ‘normal’ life again. His understanding, and fancy kit are of massive benefit to Rogers throughout the film. Mackie shares similarly strong chemistry to Evans as Johansson, with them making quite the trio. A lot of the remaining cast we’ve met, and it’s very cool to see these characters popping in and out of films, whilst you’ll also spot a few famous faces appearing in supporting roles. It’s de rigueur to be in Superhero film now don’t you know.
Action scenes make great use of the Captain’s signature shield (lovely thunk noises), and they’ve clearly sent him to a few martial arts lessons too. We really get to see how someone with these abilities would interact with the world, crashing through doors and jumping from heights that would shatter a normal person.
Not only is the action great, but the story covers a lot of ground without ever feeling rushed. The sheer amount of characters could easily have lead to a pile up. But for the most part everyone is fleshed out as well as they need to be. There is even time to sow a few seeds for the future.
If I wanted to be particularly picky I could question the amount of screen time the titular Winter Soldier gets. He’s definitely used sparingly. It did nothing to spoil the film for me though and its refreshing to have a less is more approach.
One of my struggles with comic book films is the lack of surprise from having knowledge of the source material. But I was constantly kept on my toes and wondering how things would pan out. Add in the sheer amount of Easter eggs laid out that had me oohing and ahhing and you’ve got a very enjoyable experience.
There is so much I could talk about. But I won’t spoil it. Just go watch this film! This is Marvel at their best.