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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Growing up, I was never into Captain America, nor did I ever read the
comics, so when I sat down to watch this film, I had no clue how it was
going to turn out. Was it going to be a great action film or a schlocky
mess? While Captain America didn't blow my mind like Iron Man or Thor
did, I still found it to be a very entertaining and engaging movie,
from it's 1940's theme to it's great acting and fantastic action
The film starts off in the frozen Arctic where a Russian oil team discovers something strange buried in the ice. They call up the Americans who slice through the ice and find a large aircraft under the snow and uncover a round read, white, and blue shield with a star upon it. The scene then cuts to a Norwegian village in March of 1942 where Johann Schmidt aka Red Skull seizes a mysterious item known as the Tesseract which boasts limitless power and once one lays their eyes on it, they are never the same. Meanwhile, over in America, the U.S. army deems Steve Rogers unfit for military service due to innumerable health problems, but Rogers doesn't give up and soon gets picked as a test subject for a "super solider" experiment, and hits it off with agent Peggy Carter.
Joe Johnson is the king of making pure entertainment movies and he definitely does a great job with this film by making it not a heavy, dark superhero film, but rather, a fun call back to films like Indiana Jones.
As with the other Marvel movies that I've seen so far, the cast is perfect. Chris Evans plays a great Captain America, bringing a lot of sincerity and heart to this character and he does it perfectly. During the first half of the film, Johnson slowly builds momentum to allow us time to get to know Rogers as a courageous little guy who suffers from the fury of bullies. This pitiful weakling through never lets anyone knock him down, and it's enjoyable to watch because Evans makes it look so genuine even with the computer effects. Hugo Weaving always plays a great villain and here, he is fantastic as the dark and menacing Red Skull. Tommy Lee Jones puts out a pretty convincing performance as Captain America's supervisor and even has a few humorous lines in the film. Haley Atwell is attractive, aggressive and just pain beautiful as Peggy Carter. Stanly Tucci plays Dr. Erskine perfectly well and Dominic Cooper does a solid job playing Howard Stark. Even Sam Jackson makes a small cameo at the end of the movie.
The action in this film is fantastic with a lot of slow-motion shots being used to great effect during the battle scenes. Some stand-out action scenes for me being the car chase, Rogers rescuing the prisoners, and the final showdown between Cap and Red Skull. The visual effects look pretty good and really work well when it comes to the action scenes, the music by Alan Silvestri hits all the right notes and works really well in the movie, and the chemistry between Rogers and Carter just trickles off the screen and makes for Marvel's first real romance and the end credits scene sets up The Avengers very well.
All and all, I would say Captain America: The First Avenger is definitely a great action thrill ride with a lot of heart thrown in and should be watched by any superhero film fan. Go check it out if you haven't seen it already.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This, in my opinion is my personal favorite Marvel Phase 1 solo film.
I'm aware the first Iron Man(2008) is considered to be the best, but
this one did it for me.
Joe Johnston is no stranger to period pieces, like The Rocketeer and October Sky, and in the case of Captain America, Johnston delivers everything promised in the trailers. Johnston is able to capture that patriotic spirit that permeated the US during WWII. The film has an authentic feel to it and combines elements from films like Indiana Jones mixed in with Saving Private Ryan and a touch of 007. The set pieces are fantastic, due to the fact that this film was shot entirely at London. The film crew did a very good job disguising it as the 1940's New York City. Aside from October Sky this is Johnston's second best effort.
The film starts out very strong. The beginning to the middle is solid. Here we get a story of an underdog, very skinny, small, and sickly Steve Rogers trying to do whats right. From then on Steve is chosen from the super soldier program to become the world's first super soldier, aiding the United States war effort in WWII. Eventually the film looses steam in the second act, and goes a little crazy with montages. The musical montage in particular is great and clever, but then the other two montages just try to shoehorn most of the story and the conflict and it gets very generic.
The supporting cast overall was excellent as Tommy Lee Jones (Colonel Chester Phillips) and Stanley Tucci (Dr. Erksine) steal every scene they're in. Tucci in particular has a very enlightening speech on why he chose Steve Rogers and give him a pep talk to remain humble. Hugo Weaving has a natural talent playing villains, and he knocks one out of the park as the Red Skull.
However, the heart and soul in this movie rests on Chris Evans playing the titular hero. Evans during the hype train got a lot of hate, but I was actually one of the few who supported this casting, and man he does not disappoint. He gives the story right amount of everything it needs in every scene, and he only gets better, especially in the sequel Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Haley Atwell plays a believable and lovable ally/love interest. She's not a damsel in distress which is great and the chemistry between Atwell and Evans gives Marvel's most solid and satisfying romance on screen to date, I would say even better than Tony Stark and Pepper Potts. I found the ending of this film to be quite moving. A lot more moving than I thought it would be.
The weak spots in this film were, as I stated above the rushed montage, Johnston's very calculated and sometimes soulless action sequences that just feel bland, and the Red Skull's lack of development. Hugo Weaving gives a good performance, but his character spends most of his time building his plane and reminding us that he's evil, rather than emerging as a worthwhile threat. This film does have a lot of characters, so it also comes within the territory that Cap's team The Howling Commandos don't have too much to do. One could argue that Sebastian Stan's role as Bucky, Cap's friend and sidekick was trivialized, but he got his due in the sequel.
I admire this film, I like how it does send a decent message without being too preachy about it in the beginning. I liked the set pieces, I liked the cast. It's very old fashioned, as it should be and it will pleasantly kill off two hours of your time. Good music in it too by Alan Silvestri. Evans is great in the role and has a lot of charisma.
Good old fashioned fun; that's what Captain America promises, and
that's what it delivers. With Bullets, explosions, and fisticuffs
aplenty, instantly recognizable good and bad guys, and a big side of
gung-ho patriotism, Captain America is a throwback to the
morale-building war films of Hollywood's golden era, only with higher
production values. Highbrow it ain't, or especially original, but it's
not trying to be.
The story is a familiar one, but well worth telling again. Steve Rodgers (Chris Evens), an asthmatic ninety-pound weakling from Brooklyn is turned down every time he tries to enlist- until scientist Emile Erskine sees something in the young lad and enters him into a top secret project to develop the perfect soldier. And with an injection of super-soldier serum, Rodgers becomes the courageous, muscle-bound hero Captain America and plants his shield right in the face of Nazi Germany- after staring in a nationwide bond drive that is absolutely side-splitting in its cheesiness.
This movie isn't much on nuance or complexity. There are no stunning revelations, no moral wrangling, and only simply drawn characters. Cap and his buddies are brave, selfless, and believe in freedom and standing up for the little guy, while Johann Schmidt, the Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) is a power-hungry megalomaniac who seeks to conquer not only the allies but Hitler and the Nazis as well. It might have been nice to see Rodgers developed a bit further, but I suppose the whole point is for him to be a simple, wholesome everyman, and Evens has no trouble conveying this with his natural energy and innate charm. Expect to see a lot more of this kid in the coming years.
Weaving is likewise perfect to play the Red Skull. He's had plenty of experience playing the bad guy, and I got a feeling that he was enjoying himself, even if he didn't find the role very challenging. A more interesting casting choice is the inclusion of Tommy Lee Jones. He might seem an odd pick for a superhero movie, especially considering his rather sedate performance as Two-Face in Batman Forever. But here he is perfect a Cap's no-nonsense, tough-as-nails commanding officer.
The action scenes are well staged and generally exciting; even if they do become a bit repetitive towards the middle, and it really is cool the kind of tricks Cap can pull with his shield. I also enjoyed the blend of war movie and sci-fi type elements. This is WWII fought with ray guns, rocket planes, and tanks as big as a house- although it is worth noting that the Skull's one man rocket-copter was an actual German design.
I will admit that some of the supporting characters are introduced too late for us to really get to know them. And the romance between Rodgers and Peggy Carter is so under-developed as too be perfunctory. There are also a fair number of clichés, from the talking villain to the always reliable self destruct sequence, but these play more as homage to the movies and serials of yesteryear than as evidence of a lack of ideas.
Despite some flaws, Captain America is still rousing entertainment. And while I understand that things can't always be black and white, it's still good every now and then to see a movie that lets us root unequivocally for the good guys and be proud that we're American. Captain America is that kind of movie, and it's great fun for all ages.
When talking about the first phase marvel films a lot of people see this film as the weakest I though am not one of these people because I think this film is great. This film is set in ww2 with Steve rogers wanting to fight for his country but being held back because of his size, until he is given the super soldier serum and given the chance to fight for his country. Now Chris Evans has history in comic book films as he was the human torch in the fantastic 4 films, now even though there aren't very good films I thought he did a really good job in them and boy he is even better here. The problem with captain America is that he is a boyscout a lot of the times in the comics and sometimes a joke, but in this film I thought Evans delivered the right amount of heart and action to the character to make even us who aren't American route for him. The supporting cast mostly did a great job too, Haley atwell plays agent Peggy carter and her chemistry with Evans is really good with it feeling so natural and realistic so she did a really good job. Also tommy lee Jones did a great job as the colonel with good comic relief that never went overboard because he kept it serious sometimes. Now I must say Hugo weaving was absolutely perfect as the red skull and he plays the character so well with him being truly evil and looking like he is having fun with the role. The one slight negative is Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes as I felt his character is underdeveloped so the audience don't really care about him. The story is alright with the way cap is treated being great and going different to what I expected. But the overall plot of the villain seemed weak and not enough to convince me That the story is great. The script is fantastic with the right amount of humour and drama to create a really organic feel to the film that should be applauded. The style us okay with captain America looking great and his costume is awesome, but the fact that there is laser beams and sci fi elements in this film really annoys me as it is so against what the film stands for and takes me out of it. Overall this is a great film that will entertain everybody.
This was a decent movie, better than I was expecting since I'm not
really a fan of the comic book superhero adaptions. I was intrigued by
the WW2 storyline though and for the most part this is a war story
which I liked. I also appreciated that they kept Capt. America's
rah-rah patriotism down to a dull roar.
Inception stories are always interesting and this sees Chris Evans become the first Avenger (whatever that means) Its 1942 and scrawny wannabe soldier Steve Rogers has been deemed unfit for military service again. He volunteers for a top secret research project that transforms (bulks him up) into a superhero and sees him using his newfound abilities to fight the German forces and a villain known as Red Skull.
This is a big movie with a big movie budget so there's lots to enjoy in the form of cool gadgets, cars chases, fight scenes and big explosions. Chris Evans was decent as Capt. A, perfect for the role I guess. "Mr Smith" aka Hugo Weaving did a great job as Red Skull and there are a ton of other recognizable faces involved including a last minute cameo from Sam Jackson. As a whole the story was kinda immature (which I expected) but I am still thinking about the ending, just loved it. "You gunna be okay?" "Yeah, yeah, I just... I had a date." 9/17/14
This film ranks right up there with the original release of Star Wars when I was a teenager decades ago and LOTR, which I saw on a big screen cinema. Captain America met my laptop (hardly a proper theatre), but it was awesome to watch from beginning to end. If you love action films with drama, supernatural mythology, and some nostalgia thrown into the mix, you will absolutely love this film! The characters are well-developed, the action sequences flow together very well, the plot is thick and exciting, the photography and special effects very good without being ridiculous, and the "real feel" of all the wartime memorabilia make this a work of art as well as a keep-on-the-edge-of-your-seat adventure. While it might be a tad scary for little kids, it is suitable for teenagers and great for adults. I haven't had this much fun watching a movie in years! 10 out of 10!!!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
So where to begin? At first I was a little apprehensive when I found
out that they had cast Chris Evans for the role of Cap, since I've
never seen him in anything all that serious and lets face it, Captain
America is a pretty big deal. But I must say, I was pleasantly
surprised by how things turned out.
In my opinion this may be the best Avengers movie yet. Blasphemy! I know! Thor didn't offer too much competition, but that really wasn't its fault since Thor has never had the most interesting plots anyway, unless you've got a real thing for Norse mythology or something. Please allow me to clarify though: Thor was not bad in any way really, it just wasn't great either and it just ended up somewhere in what I consider to be a respectable sort of middle area, being better than mediocre, but not as good as great. Anyhow, the Iron Man movies were good, but they didn't have one advantage Captain America uses to the fullest: a little thing called world war 2.
The other Avengers movies so far have had to struggle in some respects because they had to generate their in-film realities from scratch to a certain extent. In the case of Captain America, the cinematic reality has already been created many many times, I mean seriously, how many WWII movies do we have? And some of them were actually pretty good too. To it's favor, Captain America essentially has a very well made pre-rendered reality and atmosphere that's been built up from all the other WWII movies that have already been made. There is a wealth of cinematic information about how to make this type of period piece and it shows in the atmosphere of the film which feels both familiar and believable. There is one exception to this: I'm sure WWII history buffs that see this film will scoff at all the inaccuracies in this and every other WWII movie. But in my opinion, the reality of Captain America is very thorough and has plenty of depth.
One of the things I liked most about the movie was the casting. Not just the leads, and Chris Evans did pretty well, but maybe that's just because I was scared that he would perform terribly, but the supporting cast was one of the best I've seen in a while and in a superhero movie to boot! The character of Howard Stark is interesting and really helps to build the contiguous reality of the Avengers and I'm really happy for that, since continuity is going to be a big deal for the avengers going forwards. I must say Dominic Cooper was a solid choice for the role, but for some weird reason he reminds me of Leonardo DiCaprio. Hugo Weaving is a terrific choice as the red skull (I am not spoiling anything, if you didn't know, you're just willfully ignorant at this point) as he has proved himself to be an excellent villain before in some other film I just can't seem to recall...........
So anyhow, the basic breakdown is this: good atmosphere, believable acting, solid action, and actually pretty good plot. Initially I wasn't sure how they were going to tie it all in with the other Avengers threads, but now it all meshes rather nicely.
Important notes: The 3D is pretty good, so it's worth the extra $3 or so in my opinion and you DEFINITELY want to stay after the credits and I mean ALL the way after the credits. It seems like they might have done the same thing that they did with the Hulk where they put the teaser right at the end, but they have a little something extra after the credits and it is AMAZING! Won't say another word about it.
So go see it, it's great and check it out in 3D, they did a lot better than they did in Thor in my opinion and being in 3D was supposed to be a big part of the ad campaign for Thor, go figure.
It seems Marvel saved the best for last, at least in my opinion.
Captain America is my personal favorite of the five pre-Avengers
movies. And I think the main reason for that is that I actually really
liked the plot of this movie. The other four film's plots were fine,
but this one really interested me. Maybe I just love people beating the
crap out of Nazi's? Also, I really liked the characters, especially
Steve Rogers. He seems kind of like me. Unlike Thor and Tony Stark,
this guy isn't a douchbag half the time. He's very likable and you
really root for him. And his love interest is good as well, she's a
tough female lead in a the time of World War II. But my favorite was
Phillips, he was just so stereotypical war colonel that it was funny.
And the film has a very good sense of humor without going over the top
with it. The villain was cool, and Hugo Weaving was perfect. The
acting, special effects, action scenes, and production value, all done
well, it looked like the 40s. And I like the way it tied into Thor and
So what didn't I like, well near the middle we have that misunderstanding between Rogers and Carter, that's cliché enough, but then it's like they just forget about it as soon as it starts. Also there are some parts where it slows down, and I mean really slows down to where I just turned away and browsed the internet. And a lot of Captain America's team is forgettable, I thought that was his brother, but Wikipedia said it was his friend? So yeah, if you disagree that's fine, but this is my personal favorite of the pre-Avengers movies. And I'm very happy that Captain America is supposed to be the main focus of the Avengers. Or was that just a rumor?
I've never read any of Captain America's comics nor have been a fan of
That being said I really enjoyed this movie.
Chris Evans did good as Captain America, and Hugo Weaving was a fantastic Red Skull. It was cool seeing Tommy Lee Jones, as well as being introduced to Howard Stark played by Dominic Cooper. Stanley Tucci and Toby Jones also are great in their roles.
Though this is kinda slow in the beginning, but it picks up well. The action wasn't anything We haven't already seen, but I love the feel of it, it really feels like its taking place in WWII.
The only thing I didn't like about it was the female love interest, because She was unneeded. However the actress is pretty good.
Joe Johnston, congrats! You made in My opinion, the best superhero movie of 2011! (closely followed by X-men First Class)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Another Marvel superhero, another origin story although this time we
have a superhero with very few powers other than being able to jump
higher, bash people harder and a 1941 period setting.
Equipped with a nifty USA emblazoned shield, Captain America (CA) was always going to be the hardest sell to cynical audiences not weaned on 1940 derring do cartoon strips. The clean cut hero with no flaws and a good heart is somewhat at odds with the many complicated, anti-heroes that audiences have now embraced.
Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) is a weedy guy, stood behind a lamp post you might not see him at all. His is brave though, throwing himself on a grenade to protect his unit buddies and desperate to go fight the Nazi's in WW2. His buddy Barnes (Stan) has already enlisted but Rogers keeps receiving a "4F" rejected due to poor health from the medical board, despite numerous attempts using false addresses.
Help comes in the form of Dr Erskine (Tucci) recruiting for "Project Rebirth", a plan to create super-soldiers using the usual powers you could not possibly imagine. Being the chosen one, Rogers turns into "Captain America" replete with ripped body, rather dodgy uniform, not yet the right shield and the letter "A" on his helmet.
So far, not that different to many other similar movies. However, we do have the best movie bad guys, no shades of grey here, Nazi's and not just ordinary soldiers but Uber Nazi's. The Hydra research unit, headed by Schmidt/Red Skull (Weaving), a man who despite working directly for Hitler, still believes there is wiggle room to be more extreme.
Due to circumstances, Rogers endures a lengthy period where he is tasked with selling war bonds rather than socking it to the bad guys. Fortunately, it is not long before he is unleashed with his rag tag self assembled squad, onto the unsuspecting Hydra unit. Stevens unit commander Colonel Phillips (Lee-Jones), offering support, great one liners and dressing down's in equal measure.
Rogers is designed as a throwback, a decent man suddenly entrusted with strengths and power that amplifies everything that is inherently good and decent about him. In direct contrast to Schmidt, whose dastardly plans and world domination are stretched to the evil limit, following the application of the unimaginable power source.
Unquestionably Uber Nazi's are the coolest villains, with the best gadgets, planes, cars and submarines which can be disintegrated with ray guns, shot and blown apart with little chance of offending a world wide audience. Dr Arnim Zola (Toby Jones), as a Nazi Scientist ticks all stereotype boxes without breaking sweat, you almost expect a "Raiders of the Lost Ark" coat hanger moment to appear at any moment.
Evans does not get much opportunity to act but does well enough with what he is given, special effect techniques cleverly displaying him as a man 60 kg dripping wet, then allowing his transformation into the real buff super-soldier, Evans post gym, with few technical hitches.
The film is almost old fashioned in it's action scenes, perhaps reminiscent of director Joe Johnson's "The Rocketeer" in style and content. Rogers gets a sort of girlfriend, in the shape of Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) whether CA gets even near first base is debatable. Dammit, there is a world to save after all.
This is the final piece in the Marvel "Avengers" puzzle, the new film due in 2012 incorporating all of the Marvel characters under "S.H.I.E.L.D" (Jackson), all of which have been carefully introduced to audiences over the last few years. Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper) destined to be Iron Man's father, also gets a look in as mad inventor/billionaire, again linking the intertwining stories together.
The studio must surely be pleased at the reception received even for it's "lesser" characters, with respectable box office returns for both "Thor" and "Captain America".
Old fashioned swashbuckling fun in the Indiana Jones style, with a straight as an arrow good guy, pantomime villains and exciting well executed state of the art action sequences.
Fantastic Nazi villain lairs, awesome B-Wing bombers and enormous Nazi limousines, plenty of explosions and a reasonable story to hang all the action on.
What more could one want from a summer superhero movie?
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