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Captain America: The First Avenger
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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Old fashioned swashbuckling fun in the Indiana Jones style

Author: julian-mumford from New Zealand
6 December 2011

*** 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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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Don't live up to its expectations

Author: Aasta Kyvik from oslo, norway
26 May 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

First of all, I was deeply disappointed by the movie. I was looking forward to some spectacular and meaningful marvel superhero movie, but Captain America didn't quite live up to marvel's name.

First of all I have to say I enjoyed the training camp at the army, but that's about it. In those scene Rogers is a very honorable man, and I guess he continued being so, but after his transformation I really felt as the character lost his uniqueness. Like with the flag pole you could see his ability to think outside the box, but with him as captain America I didn't feel like there was anything outside the box - I felt as if I had seen it all before.

Secondly, I think that the villain in this movie was pretty pathetic. "Red scull", really?! You never got to know why he was THAT against the world, he was just put in the movie as an obstacle for the hero.

Thirdly, the technology was way to far developed of its time and made it all seem pretty unrealistic.

And last but not least, the ending sucked... I didn't feel as if it fitted with the plot, and instead of giving me any answers it left me with even more questions. Who found him? How could he been sleeping for 70 years? For me it seemed as the ending was made as an excuse to a new Captain America movie, which I'm perfectly fine without seeing.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

A Superhero Film That Isn't Ashamed of the Hero.

Author: TheBlueSaint
31 December 2013

Most of the critical reviews of this film fault it for the very thing that makes it special. They criticize it for acting and plot when it's obvious what they really can't tolerate is the message. It's entertaining rather than dark; exciting rather than dismal and engrossing rather than self important. Unlike the common trend it portrays a hero that is self-sacrificing rather than self pitying. Who is more concerned with others than himself. This doesn't fit with the current fad for heroes who are borderline psychopaths as likely to snap and end the world as to save it. The people who hate this film are the ones who think a brooding, self hating Batman is "realistic" and avidly follow a meth-dealer's descent into violence and madness. Brave, honest and self-sacrificing don't carry the cool-cachet of brutal, psychotic and self-absorbed. This is a film with an actual hero rather than an anti-hero. Someone you wouldn't be afraid to find yourself alone with in an elevator.

For some reason actual heroes offend certain people. They claim they're not "real" enough; they don't reflect the frailty, deceit and brutality of actual people. They seem to be insulted by a portrayal of a person who is more noble than they are. Who challenges their vision that somehow we're all corrupt if you look deeply enough. They claim that the movie is clichéd; as if the lonely hero sitting sullenly gazing over the city is somehow fresh and insightful. They criticize the acting as if Chris Evans' squeaky clean Captain America is somehow more contrived than Christian Bale's neurotic Batman and Hugo Weaving's Red Skull is more over-the-top than Heath Ledger's manic Joker. They're criticizing the medium but what unnerves them is the message. I wish I understood why.

There is one other vein that runs through the critical reviews. It's too overtly American. As if that is by its very nature a flaw. They feel that Americans should forever dwell only on the mistakes of recent years and forget any achievements of the past. To begin and end all things with a spoken or unspoken apology for the very act of being American. This is as myopic as blind patriotism. There is no shame in highlighting the ideals towards which a great country should strive.

But back to the film. If you want to feel exhilarated; to feel good about being alive when you're done viewing a film; if you want a film that has humor and soul as well as violence and mayhem watch Captain America. If you want to leave a film wondering whether simply being human is somehow a burden; as if it's all just a long solemn slog unto the grave watch another, more "realistic" hero film.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

In retrospect, very little worth watching

Author: Voyou Nobodysbusiness from Turkey
20 November 2013

It has only been a couple of years, and I can't recall anything from the story, except from the early part, when Cap was still a weakling. Seems like growing muscles transformed him into Captain Forgettable. Meanwhile, I still remember some arcs from the comics I read as far as decades ago, and I never really cared for that character one way or another.

I can understand good notes pouring in soon after the movie's release. Brains work that way. I can understand praise from patriotism-afflicted viewers. Spinal cords work that way. However, technically, artistically or whateverly, this film has very little to offer. From the action scenes, I can only recall that the pictures were always too dark, as dark as a low budget piece trying to hide its special effects. This is a shame considering the insane amount of money used here, and a very, very common occurrence in corporate Hollywood.

Worse yet, I didn't even remember any of the cast until IMDb refreshed my memory. To make Tommy Lee Jones forgettable is such an achievement that it should automatically grant a spot in the Grand Hall of Shame.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Captain America. Very entertaining movie.

Author: njoannen-22 from United States
16 October 2012

I recently watched Captain America on Netflix. Chris Evans was very convincing in his role as Steve Rogers aka Captain America. All of the actors and actresses were very convincing in their portrayal of their characters. The director Joe Johnson was very effective in telling the story of Captain America. His choice of lighting, camera angles, and soundtrack really set the tone of the movie. The plot of the movie was very well thought out. From beginning to end the movie was very enjoyable.If i had one complaint it would be the movie did not have enough action and drama than from what i had hoped.That's just my opinion though.. Overall this movie was enjoyable. I would definitely recommend this movie to my friends, family, and to anyone who enjoys action,romantic, and some what comedic movies.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Highly entertaining

Author: JoshSharpe from United States
22 September 2012

Have you ever dreamt of being an American hero? Steve Rodgers certainly has but he hasn't yet found much success in making his fantasy become a reality. Steve is small, weak, and awkward. He has tried to enlist in Army but has been refused. After meeting a friendly doctor who decides to give him a try, he joins the Army and soon after becomes part of an experiment to test drugs that will strengthen him and give him a better chance to be successful. While all this is going on, a madman named Schmidt is attempting to take over the world. This film, set in the 1940s, feels more like a war movie than a superhero movie. Either way however, director Joe Johnston pulls it off and does it very well. It is highly entertaining, with perfect acting, grand sets, and a first-class story. I especially liked Tommy Lee Jones' performance as the rough colonel. As it began, I was comparing the characters of Steve Rodgers and Peter Parker, from Spider-Man, who both are week and not at all hero-like but become powerful as the stories go on. However, there couldn't be a bigger difference between the two because Steve Rodgers is so much more of a stronger and likable character altogether. Although it starts out slow and some of it is a bit silly, the entire movie is a joy to watch and everything comes together in an unforgettable picture.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

A helluva lot of fun

Author: Sir_Cellophane_Beak from Aukland
20 April 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a great movie, but not as good as the 1985 Bollywood version. This version is more of an CGI effects showcase movie instead of telling the story of what these gentlemen went thru to become respected saviors of nations during times of ordeal. The movie is gorgeous, and the action is well made and exciting. The MVP of the film is Cap'n, who is given some powerful lines and clearly stands out from the rest of the cast. OK, on the negative, the film is drawn out (2 hrs and 5 min is too long), the characters are made to represent some of the old common characters you have seen in countless other Marvel one-offs and Captain A.'s character is not as strong as Mr. India's (to be fair he can not turn invisible and at times it seems like he is just there). In summary, excellent film which does pay tribute to the Honorable Hero known as the Mr.India!

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Nazis. I hate these guys.

Author: Dan Franzen (dfranzen70) from United States
4 April 2012

I admit that I don't know what to make of this, that there's been a run of comic-book movies that have managed to be plausible and thrilling, not cheap knockoffs rushed out to exploit a fad. Captain America: The First Avenger is one of the former. It features a terrific performance by Chis Evans as the Cap, a modicum of special effects and CGI, a slimy villain played by Hugo Weaving, and the famous backdrop of World War II. So help me, I found myself liking the movie despite my preconceptions.

Steve Rogers (Evans) is a spindly, sickly young man who's full of desire to go fight those dastardly Nazis, but he's just too frail for the military, so he's classified 4F. Several times, in fact, under different names. A mysterious scientist named Dr. Erskine (Stanley Tucci) recruits Rogers to be part of a secret project: he'll inject Rogers' major organs and arteries with a new serum that will turn him into a super soldier. The military, represented by Colonel Phillips (Tommy Lee Jones), and the CIA, represented by Agent Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) are very interested in the results. Well, the results aren't too good, as the Nazis grab the serum and prevent anyone from making more super soldiers. But at least the US has Rogers, right? He's now super strong, fast, and agile.

But one man is not an army, so instead of leading troops to victory Rogers is instead hired as a sort of USO cheerleader for war bonds. Yep, seriously. But you can't keep the good Captain down for long, and soon he is indeed leading some crazy mission to rescue his best friend Bucky and assorted Allied troops while also looking out for the nefarious Red Skull, head of Hitler's science division.

It's well cast. Evans is believable as both the skinny Rogers and the pumped-up Captain America. He's earnest without seeming to take himself or the movie too seriously. Tucci, Jones, Weaving and newcomer Atwell are top notch as well.

Even bearing in mind that this movie is merely a setup for the big Avengers film coming out soon (as were other movies, like Iron Man, Thor, and The Hulk), one can easily lose oneself in the great old-time action-adventure feel this one has, reminiscent of 1991's The Rocketeer. You have mad scientists, mythical technology, Nazis, all-American good guys, lots of neat guns. It's not a loud bore like Transformers, and the action scenes are well staged, as are the pyrotechnics. Throw in a believable plot (at least in the realm of comic-book movies), and this one's above average for the genre. I've probably said this before about other movies, but this is definitely one that's what a comic-book movie should be - daring, easy to follow, full of pulse-pounding action, and human.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Superb in many ways. Great Fun!

Author: vicvonfate from United States
14 January 2012

Is there more to say? The sheer joy that this movie provides makes you happy to love movies. You feel blessed. And you want to thank Joe Johnson, or some god of the arts, for bringing this film, these characters to life. You fall back into a state close to childhood, when every new picture you saw was the best there is. You spend two hours smiling. Just smiling...

2011 was a great year for action/adventure and Captain America The First Avengers is right at the top of that impressive list. MARVEL is definitely on a roll… what with the record breaking success of Iron Man as well as Thor hitting big this year. Let's not forget how good X-Men First Class turned out and that Spider-Man is getting a facelift and will tear it up next year. Speaking of next year, let's not forget all this greatness has been leading up to THE AVENGERS!!!!

This movie was excellent and entertaining and deserves all the praise it has gotten. Superb in many ways.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Incredible Movie, should be watched by everyone!

Author: p-valderhaug from Norway
26 December 2011

I never had any relationship to the Captain America comics, i always found the all-American hero to be a bit too much for me. Based on this, i did not have high expectations for this movie. I was proved wrong. From the first scene to the last i was glued to the screen. Chris Evans portrays the All-American kid from Brooklyn Steve Rogers perfectly.

Through this movie my joy for Captain America was highly raised. Over the last years there has been many movies based off of Marvels comic book superheroes, this is by far my favorite, it gave life to probably the most heroic of all the superheroes. The antagonist is also portrayed rather well. The only thing i did not like about the movie is the ending. I feel like it was a bit pushed so that it would fit with The Avengers in 2012, but that was it.

To give this movie an eight is based on the fact that this movie did justice to the comic book character and showed him as a freedom fighter, someone who will do anything to keep people safe, instead on showing him off with his red, white and blue colors. If you like superheroes, you really should watch this one.

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