Film and Story Critique
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Captain America is back to save the day again. Good news, it lives up to the hype. Sometimes sequels are simply an attempt to capitalize on previous movie success. That is not the case with Captain America: The Winter Soldier. There is plenty of action here with a great story line. In many respects there are multiple plots woven together in an effort to set the stage for a future movie as well as lining up events in support of the story line of the television series, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
[Spoiler Alert] This time he has to save the world from Robert Redford. Yes, Robert Redford is a bad-guy. Although he is supposed to be a part of S.H.I.E.L.D. (The Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement, and Logistics Division) as well as the World Security Council, His alliance is to himself and surprise—surprise, what gives him the most power and is the most profitable. According to the “grapevine” Redford was brought into the project because this story borrows from his 1975 film Three Days of the Condor directed by Sidney Pollack and starring Robert Redford, Faye Dunaway, and Cliff Robertson. Redford was a good guy in the Condor film.
Our good Captain, played by Chris Evans, is back and bigger than life. Evans looks the part and acts the part of a soft spoken, confident, yet seriously goal focused, hard punching, death defying superhero. Not every actor can pull off the appearance of a superhero that doesn’t get over-dramatic and at least a little bit of a big ego to go with their super strength. Actor Henry Cavill managed to present his character Superman (2013) in a similar manner; however, he played the man-of-steel a little too meekly in character.
Let’s face it; if you had super strength and hard to kill, no matter how mild manner you want to be, you will still be at least a little cocky at times. Chris Evans, with an almost “another day at the office” look on his face jumps out of an aircraft without a parachute while special operations soldiers assigned to work with him are gearing-up for the jump. Nonchalantly, one of the Spec Ops soldiers says to another, “was he wearing a parachute?” His buddy just answers with, “no, no he wasn’t.” That brief scene exemplifies our Captain’s character throughout the film: See it, Take action, and Get it done. Even when things don’t go as smoothly and quickly as our Captain experiences when he faces the Winter Soldier, he adapts and fights on.
Sebastian Stan plays the Winter Soldier who turns out to be an old friend of the Captain. Unfortunately, their first reunion doesn’t turn out so well; nor does Evans’ character realize or recognize the man behind the mask until later in the story. Stan’s character remains a bit of a mystery to us, the viewers, in respect to exactly who he is and why he has the ability to match the Captain punch for punch. Two-thirds of the way through the movie we learn who the Soldier is, but not how he got to where he is. Even in the end of the movie a good part of the mystery remains; enough at least to set-up another meeting between these two bigger-than-life characters.
Captain’s face-off with the Winter Soldier towards the end of the movie also does not go as he would have hoped – but I should stop there or I may spoil it for you. You’ll just have to check this movie out yourself. You won’t be disappointed. Personally, I’m just itching to see the next sequel that builds upon this story. However, for now, we will have to wait because the next Marvel’s film is called Avengers: Age of Ultron set to come out in 2015. This next movie will bring back many of our favorite heroes.