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Salinger treats it seriously
Dando8310 September 2000
Unfortunately, this is not the Marvel movie that will endear you to comic book movie adaptations. However, I think Salinger gives an honest performance as the title character, even if he spends more time out of costume than in. For whatever reason, the Red Skull is made Italian, rather than German, but it didn't bother me as much as it did some other viewers. For being a B-movie, Captain America is tolerable. Watch it first, before you make any judgements. You might be able to suspend your disbelief long enough to enjoy it.
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Weak movie
kluhyarg22 January 2015
I remember watching this movie once when I was a kid, it was on TV and I "watched" while playing. Some days ago I was looking for something to watch on Netflix and found this movie, so I decided to re-watch this. I wasn't expecting much since some years ago I watched a negative review of this movie, but it was actually worse than I thought it would be.

The script is weak with the story having a lot of inconsistencies. The villains can travel really fast from one location to another and always know were to go. Captain America's powers seems to be almost nonexistent and he fails a lot in the movie. Also most of the action scenes aren't very good.

With that said, this movie is at least watchable. On the positive side the Red Skull make-up is very good and the Captain's uniform is very accurate to the comics.
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Cheesy But Not as Bad As Batman and Robin
jl_downing23 September 2008
im not gonna sit here and justify this movie cus it cant be its crap...however if you like cheesy film (and i do) then its so cheesy its actually quite good....the effects are weird the acting is terrible and the story is poor and really weird and full of plot holes, however for some strange reason i cant fully comprehend i enjoyed it....i love these cheesy films....that aren't delibertly bad....but just cus they were cheap and couldn't afford better actors and sets...the film goes in a strange direction and i like films like that for some strange reason i cant comprehend, it isn't a movie i can really recommend but if your a fan of movies such as "Plan 9 from outer space" then this is your movie you'll love this....if you hate movies like that and your a fan of transformers and modern action movies then i'd probably avoid this one i think
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No. it's so bad it's good. enjoy it to laugh at it.
subxerogravity6 August 2016
I'm confirming it is lame. It suffers from the same issues as the 1994 Fantastic Four, but unlike FF I can give it a, it's so bad it's good stamp (And I'm very happy about that).

Captain America is a pretty easy comic to adapt to the big screen, it's just an action adventure war movie about a guy who sometimes wears a mask. They did take some liberties with the character that make my Fanboy radar point up, but it's superficial.

Steve Rodgers is now a boy from Southern California who has polio and offered himself up to the super soldier experiment headed up by a woman who escaped from the Nazis (The idea of a woman creating the star spangled avenger was cool, not enough female brainiacs in the comic book industry ).

Shortly after Steve Rodgers becomes Captain America the doctor is killed making Steve and The Red Skull the only one's like them. After stopping the Red Skull from destroying the White House he is trapped in Ice for 60 years and wakes up having to stop the Red Skull, who has formed an underground crime unit that basically is Hydra without saying it,again.

Proving how well Cap works as an action movie, Matt Salinger who plays Steve Rogers, wearing some sort of padding to make it look like he's got more than he does, barely wears the cartoonish suit they made for him (of course wearing the uniform makes him Captain America, duh)

It's got that 80s swagger to it. The Red Skull has his daughter do all the heavy lifting for most of the movie with her small army of rich Nazi brats who drive the fastest cars and wear the hottest fashions but more than capable with the guns.

They took some liberties with The Red Skull's origin too, I think this was to save money and film the entire movie in Italy (I'm also guessing that certain places in Italy look more like Southern California than New York City)

I am being harsh on the movie because I've grown to like the character more now than I ever did when I was a kid and saw this, but like I expressed before, the movie does have a so bad it's food quality that makes it real enjoyable.
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I'm just glad he wasn't a surfer dude or a crusading D.A.
comic20717 April 2004
Like many Cap fans, I eagerly waited for the Captain America film and was disappointed when it went direct-to-video. When I finally saw the video, I was disappointed with the story. I did like the physical acting with Cap in costume, and I think that was the one true thing about Captain America. Rather than rant on about what was wrong, let me tell you Hollywood scripters how to do it right;

1. The first movie must spend a great deal (if not the whole movie) in WWII, where his legend will start. No urban legend in the 21st Century.

2. Steve Rogers is a NEW YORKER! He kept his optimism despite losing both parents to disease (alcoholism, pneumonia) during the Great Depression. Even in the new millennium, he loves listening to big band and 40s music and anything that sparks such nostalgia. He's still a BROOKLYN Dodgers fan.

3. What the hell was that with the plastic ears?! (Sorry, had to get that one out.)

4. Get that shield was way better than not having one in the serial (a gun?) or a clear one in the TV movie.

5. Don't forget that the costume has a star on the front *and* back.

6. If you make the Red Skull (most likely villain) Italian again, so help me...

7. I wouldn't mind seeing Bucky, but you can do like the Ultimates storyline and have him non-costumed in the war if it'll help. But please don't make Cap's costume like the one in the Ultimates (either version).

8. Don't try to combine love interests (Bernie was the girlfriend during the 1980s, Sharon was the girl in the 60s and 70s, but it was wrong to make them mother and daughter.).

9. I gotta say it again...don't make him an urban legend like Batman! Captain America was created to be a symbol and INSPIRE American public and forces as a response against the Red Skull. He can't do that if he's skulking the shadows.

Thanks and good luck.
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Bad but not irredeemable
JamesMovieGuy_1178 December 2017
Steve Rodgers becomes Captain America and must fight against the Nazi super soldier Red Skull. Captain America is however frozen in time until he awakens in 1990. Red Skull still wishes to fulfil his plan of world domination by becoming the president of the United States.

I went into this movie expecting to hate it since that seems to be the general consensus. What I saw was bad on many levels but not what I would call irredeemable.

On the positive side the production isn't too bad. The editing is passable except for those awful montage sequences. The cinematography and lighting is not what I would call inept. The acting is okay but the terrible writing makes for some awful line deliveries.

However, this movie has quite possibly the worst superhero costume of all time, rivalled by the motorcycle helmet wearing Captain America from the 1979 TV movie. He seems to have prosthetic ears attached to his head and the wings makes his appearance seem comical.

The tone is also all over the place. You have Nazis and Germans executing people and at the same time you have a running gag where Captain America pretends to be car sick and hijacks cars.

It's bad in a cheesy way. I would say the Fantastic Four 1994 movie was miles better in being faithful to the source material while having an extremely low budget. However, as I said, I did find some little things enjoyable like the action, special effects and even production qualities.

I think you will either hate it or find it as a harmless bit of cheesy entertainment and fun.
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Lacked the Special Effects of the More Modern Captain America Films
Uriah4318 September 2016
This movie begins in Italy just prior to World War 2 with government soldiers breaking into a house to kidnap a young boy and then murdering his family in the process. The reason for the kidnapping is that they need a test subject for an experiment which might allow them to create super-soldiers for their army and dreams of conquest. Yet, even though the experiment is a complete success, the doctor involved in it becomes horrified by the ruthlessness of those she works with and manages to escape to the United States with all of the secrets required to continue her work in her head. She then continues her research in the United States which eventually concludes with the making of a super-hero named "Captain America" (Matt Salinger) to counter the super-villain created in Italy who goes by the name of the "Red Skull" (Scott Paulin). Unfortunately, her success is short-lived as she is assassinated by Nazi agents and the secrets she had dies with her shortly afterward. But with war breaking out both Captain America and the Red Skull soon clash with each other and the story becomes even more pronounced after that. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say this the particular movie lacked the special effects of the more modern Captain America films which clearly resulted in an inferior picture by comparison. Even so, I didn't think the movie was necessarily bad as it still managed to entertain to a certain degree. That being said, I have rated this movie as about average and recommend it to those who enjoy films of this type.
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A fun movie based on a classic comic character!
cwhipple10 February 2004
I've always liked this movie. It was made as a low-budget film, but I think it all came together pretty well. I was always a big fan of the Captain America character and comics and was really excited when I first saw it on video. The origin of Captain America is fairly faithful to the comics, but the Red Skull character is really different. In fact, I think the Red Skull character in this film is what makes it interesting. This movie is different enough from the comics that it makes it worth watching (otherwise you should just stick to the comics), yet it is faithful enough in the style and personalities of the characters and storylines so as not to disappoint longtime Captain America fans.

Instead of being German, the Red Skull is Italian. You also find out about how Red Skull got his start while the comics are a little obscure about his origin. There is a lot of bright outside filming to this action-adventure. It is also quite funny at moments. My advice to the viewer is not to take it too seriously. Just enjoy yourself and you won't be disappointed. It helps to be open-minded. Besides, the actress that plays the Red Skull's evil daughter is HOT!
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One of the best Captain America movies yet!!!
Indyfan821 October 2002
I love this movie! Captain America and the Red Skull are both in it and both look as they should. The origin is true to the comics and Captain America's costume looks very cool. He does throw the shield and knock down the Red Skull a few times in the movie. It's more of an origin movie but it's a very exciting one. Definitely watch it!
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Not bad for its time
chucknorrisfacts9 May 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Captain America was a 1990 direct-to-video release from 21st Century Films starring Matt Salinger (son of "Catcher in the Rye" author J.D. Salinger) in the title role, Ronny Cox, Ned Beatty, and Scott Paulin as Cap's nemesis, "The Red Skull".

Sure this movie's ridiculed now, but as a child growing up in the 1990s it was this, or literally nothing. Superhero movies weren't the box office blockbusters they are today, and as such this film was quite the novelty back then.

Now you can walk into any store and find tons of Marvel merchandise, but it was a different story in the early-to-mid nineties. It was a lot harder to find anything Marvel related, but thankfully times have changed and people now see comics as great resources for turning out highly entertaining films. Truly, kids don't know how lucky they have it now.

Sure, this movie had more than its fair share of flaws including transforming Red Skull from the German Nazi of his comic continuity into an Italian fascist for the film version, a choice I'm still puzzled by. Taking two of Captain America's unrelated love interests from different eras and making them mother and daughter in the film also seemed an odd decision, but what seemed utterly unforgivable to me as a kid was the costume designer who forgot to put a star on both the front AND back of Cap's uniform! The one thing they got right on the money was his shield.

Comic fans are an interesting bunch, and I'm proud to call myself one of them, and one thing that drives us all mad is taking liberties with the source material. I think had this movie tried to stay closer to its comic book roots it wouldn't have been criticized so harshly.

Personally, I believe had the filmmakers focused on making this story more of a period piece set in the 1940s during the height of World War II, I think the end result would have been a lot better. It would've given us the chance to see why Captain America was considered an American legend and war hero. As it was, it seemed the screenwriter was more focused on trying to propel the story into what was then present day. I would say that maybe roughly fifteen minutes, if that, takes place in 1943 while the rest of the movie takes place in 1993.

In conclusion, I'd say that "Captain America" isn't a great movie, but it's not that bad, and before you rip it to shreds, try to remember the time period from which it came. A time when comic book movies weren't the norm, and kids were happy to have something like this to watch.

If you're curious to watch it I'd say you probably won't be able to find this on DVD and certainly not Blu Ray, but check around on online auctions websites for used VHS copies, or any other popular video streaming sites where I know it's available to watch for free.

I'll be curious to see Captain America: The First Avenger when it comes to theaters in 2011, with Chris Evans (formerly the "Human Torch" from the two abysmal "Fantastic Four" movies) taking on the mantle of Captain America.
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dudeicon22 January 2001
THE BAD: Steve Rogers....Captain America, symbol of the 1940s American pride. I don't think so. I am a huge Cap fan. I love his "holier than thou" personality. Probably the only Superhero that could beat the Batman in comicbook lore, was depicted as a nerdy looser in this adaptaion of the legendary hero. The Red Skull dosen't look like a skull...the entire movie. Most of these actors are relative unknowns. Cap is only buff sometimes...his padded muscle suit sometimes makes him look fat. Why the fake ears? Dr. Visca-who?

THE GOOD: Nice outfit Cap. Cool sheild. Not the worst acting ever. OVERVIEW: Despite the many flaws. I like this movie. I maybe biased, but it truly is somewhat fun to watch. Make mine Marvel!
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A Disappointment
ReelCheese5 September 2004
Superhero movies are again a hot property thanks to the big screen adaptations of Spider-Man, X-Men and Superman. As such, many film buffs who know little or nothing about Captain America have no doubt been picking this one up at the video store. Too bad nothing but pure crapulescence awaits them.

Where to begin? The movie has a dim look to it; the acting is second-rate; and the action and battle scenes are few and far between. It will disappoint most die-hard comic book fans, perhaps as much as those silly 1970s Cap films were. On a positive note, the action scenes aren't awful when the viewer finally gets to them. As well, the characters stay pretty true to their illustrated roots, and kids aren't going to be nearly as fussy as adult moviegoers about this one.
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So Bad It's Good
Topher00710 August 2001
This is one of the great bad movies of all time. The thought that someone even made this movie makes me laugh. I love it. Don't look for any greatness here just dumb dumb fun. A movie to laugh at not with. This movie had such a cult following that although it's not listed here, and I have yet to see it, there was a Captain American 2. I really must get my hands on that.
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Comic fans beware.
Squonk5 January 1999
I've never read a Captain America comic book. But I don't have to to know that any fan of the comic won't be too pleased with this film. Matt Salinger does his best with a lousy story. Captain America doesn't even finish one mission before he's frozen in ice, only to be thawed out 50 years later. The Red Skull is the villain, but in most of the movie he looks like a guy with acne problems. However, we do learn that the Red Skull had a hand in the JFK assassination. How Oliver Stone missed that lead is beyond me. The Captain's super powers seem to be limited to throwing his shield and faking car sickness. On the positive side, at times the film does have the feel of a 40's serial. I would've liked to see that carried out, but the film never decides whether to be serious or kind-of-corny. Instead it just ends up being boring.
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This is the Best B-movie i've ever seen!
Hypno-219 May 1999
You can't take this film too seriously. Like almost every straight to video movie. Its a B-movie! i mean come on the only thing that didn't make it a b-movie was a sex scene and they probably cut it out. The film had the feel of an old forties flick. The plot was pretty insulting though but it did capture some horrors of WW2 maybe not very well but somewhat. it was an insult ot all Cap fans to have Cap basically screw up his first mission. The Red Skull only looked decent in ONE! count it ONE Scene. The rest of the film he looked like a freak! please come on people HES THE FREAKING RED SKULL!!

Tin Man sorry to say but you insult Dean knootz by comapring his work with this garbage. its a B-movie! i've seen worse really. the acting was ok i suppose but the script didnt go anywhere and had more plotholes than the streets by my house.
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I don't understand how anyone can dislike this movie
nathanno8 January 2010
I was a child when I first watched "Captain America," and I loved it. So, when I saw that it was on, I decided to rewatch it and relive some of my childhood. I also wanted to see how I would evaluate it as an adult. Did my childhood naiveté color my perception of this movie? Did I only think it was great because I was too young to understand it? My conclusion- absolutely not! THIS MOVIE IS GREAT. It has a solid story, good action sequences, a great pace, and Matt Salinger is perfect in his role.

Some people may criticize this movie because it lacks CGI and modern effects, but I think that this is an area in which the current generation is spoiled. CGI is used way too often nowadays, and I much prefer traditional special effects. None of the special effects in this movie looked fake, and the fight sequences in it were much superior to modern films where the camera is so zoomed in and shaky that you can't tell what's happening.

This movie also has a good message and heart. It's not just flashing lights and oohs and aahs- it has a story. I highly recommend it to anyone, and I seriously doubt that the upcoming Captain America film will surpass this masterpiece.
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so bad it's good
hannahbolecter4 May 2002
to say it lightly, i loved this movie. it's one of those cheesy types that is so poorly done that you can't help but smile. if you're the type who likes dumb movies like bring it on, the mummy, and chicken run, this could be the one for you!
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not bad
johnc214114 March 2010
i know many will disagree with me but i thought 1990s captain America is not a bad movie,true it could've been better but so far it fares better then the far as the new one i don't know yet but having seen the serial and the TV movies its better.there's a good cast including Bill Mumy,Micheal Nouri,Melinda Dillon,Ned Beatty,Darren Mcgavin,and Matt Salinger as Steve Rodgers aka;captain America.and character actor Scott Paulin as the red skull.there is some great fight scenes and the shield throwing was done well.and there is a sexy beautiful femme fatale played by Francesca Neri.many marvel comics fans bailed on this movie which bombed at the box office and went to video.the budget was low but the movie is a 7,which means it was not bad,but not great.the forth coming one should be good.i don't want to give away any spoilers but its really worth a viewing.not sure its on DVD yet but i know its on
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Ah... It's not that bad...
cLoNe9 August 1999
The movie is quite bad, but not that bad. It has its good moments. If it plays on cable TV and you have nothing better to do, it's a nice way to waste a little time. Captain America deserves a better treatment, but what's done is done...
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Still one of my favourate comic adaptations
OliverPage5476 February 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I have loved this film since I was a little kid, I would'nt change anything about the story: Steve Rogers applies to be the guinea pig in a US experiment to make super soldiers to help win the second world war. After fighting the German warrior the Red Skull, Cap is frozen in ice for 40 years only to be awoken in Alaska. His long lost love is murdered by the Red Skull and the current US President is kidnapped and its up to Cap to don the Red, White & Blue suit and shield to redeem himself and make up for his loss 40 years previously.

This film stuck pretty close to the character and I think people should give it more of a chance, I really hope that when the new Cap film is released in the next couple of years people go back and re evaluate their opinions.

Personally I would give this film two thumbs up. watch if your a fan of films such as 'Spiderman', 'Superman' and 'The Punisher'.
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WARNING!!! It's not quite what it seems!!!
Climinator2 April 2013
Back in the mid-90s I watched this film and thoroughly enjoyed it as a child even though Captain America wasn't my favourite superhero. However, out of intrigue in the last few years, I have found out that this movie got a lot of the characters and settings completely wrong. For example when was Red Skull an Italian Fascist? He's always been a Nazi. Still, after watching the excellent 2011 Captain America movie with Chris Evans (not the former DJ) I set out to purchase that film. Picked the DVD and it turned out to be this one instead. Don't get me wrong, it's not as bad as some say however there was a lot of potential wasted. One big problem the film suffers from is that the writers tried to cram every single major moment of Captain America's history into a 90-95 minute film. It dosen't work successfully. Another problem is that the film obviously had severe budget constraints as you can often tell that actors are facing backdrops. Some actors have to even play multiple roles. On the plus side the acting is watchable with a very dark opening (on par with the opening of Xmen). The actor playing Captain America (Matt Salinger, son of author JD) gives a pretty believable performance as does the actor playing Red Skull (Scott Paulin).

Its not a bad comic book movie, that title goes to Green Lantern for me. This one just should've stayed close to it's original resource material and not include every major moment of Captain America's history in 90 minutes. Having an ending where it could've been left open for sequels might've been a better idea.

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I liked it.
TLey19 September 2000
Unlike every Superman film staring Christopher Reeves that was ever produced, Captain America is actually watchable. Then again, I have absolutely zero background knowledge of the comic book incarnation so I'm likely being very generous.I liked the fact that he spent most of the film wearing normal clothes. With a costume that ridiculous he needs to. Watching someone who was frozen in the 1940's try to reorient themself into the 1990's, and cope with all the changes that have occurred since, was reminiscent of the movie "Forever Young". Perhaps this film's biggest asset, and its biggest failing, was that most of it seemed a lot less comic booky than most comic book movies. Granted the cinematography was pretty low quality for 1992.
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The 3rd best Captain America movie,so far.....
ChinkyFunbags1 May 2017
I never knew this movie existed and that's surprising.It's a good comic book movie even though they change Cap's origin.I'm sure kids watching it today would think it's cheesy after seeing the newer Marvel movies but this movie is just like a comic book from that period.The origin is a bit strange.The Red Skull is an Italian who was given the same treatment that Steve Rogers was given.Some type of weird electrocution thing invented by a woman created them both.After Cap is created he is sent to fight the Red Skull.He ends up being strapped to a rocket pointed at the White House.He tries to take Red Skull with him but Skull cuts off his own hand.All the way to the White House Cap can't do anything but at the last second he makes the rocket turn.It goes to Alaska and gently lands in the snow.Fast forward to 1990 and Steve Rogers is running around Europe with some woman getting into hijinks with the Red Skull.All of a sudden Captain America is Vince Vaughn in a romantic comedy.Did I mention Skull has gotten extensive plastic surgery and is just a little red now?That's weird.All that aside, it's still a decent movie.It just helps if you don't already know anything about Captain America.
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I loved it
Bored_Dragon23 April 2017
I cannot say I had no expectations from this movie, because I did. I expected it to be unwatchable crap that I'll give up on after ten minutes or so. I mean, it has rating 3,3/10 and it's bashed all over the internet. What can one expect from superhero B production of 80's anyway... But I was in for a pleasant surprise.

The movie is shot at Adriatic sea, which guarantees a beautiful scenery, and chases in Dubrovnik are a real joy. I was worried because it's produced in Yugoslavia in cooperation with Jadran Film, but from the result I suppose 21th Century Production and Marvel Entertainment had most of the work done. Movie is pretty much faithful to comics and Captain America's costume is just as it should be. Acting is decent, action is few, but when it comes it's well directed, and movie has nice comic-book atmosphere. There's no nudity, vulgarity or explicit violence, except for gunfights and common fist-fighting, so it's whole family friendly. There are few nicely done emotional scenes and just a bit of humor. I enjoyed it very much.

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Not a Good Film, But Enjoyable in its Badness
gavin694221 August 2007
Steve Rogers is turned into a super soldier to fight the Red Skull during World War II. He loses and is frozen for fifty years. When he comes back, he finds the Red Skull has assassinated Kennedy, King and has become one of the world's most powerful supervillains and businessmen. Can he stop the Skull now?

This film is fun if you like seeing a guy in a bad costume run around and throw a shield, while a man who looks and acts like Jimmy Carter is a crime-fighting president (and protector of the environment). It's light on plot, light on character development and even the action comes off as more cheesy than anything. But to be honest with you, this was more fun than almost any of the modern comic book films. (For example, "Batman Begins" is a phenomenal film -- but it's not as easy to sit back and laugh at with a beer.)

Why is the Red Skull Italian? As I recall from the comics, he's quite German, and there was no real reason to change this for the movie. I mean, if you're fighting the Nazis, isn't it just more logical to have the villain be German? Where did he get a daughter from? This remains unanswered. Other things seemed fishy... and even the decoder ring, which was important to the story, never paid off as fully as I would have liked (and what exactly did it decode?).

If you get a copy of this movie, keep your expectations low and your supply of Busch Light very high. Not a good movie, unless you love ripping apart such films. I do, so I loved it. But I wouldn't foist it anyone... but maybe the old "Punisher" film...
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