Captain America Civil War

Potential Spoilers Below:

This review is not going to sugar coat or be one of total praise like some of the reviews for Captain America: Civil War have been. We all know that this movie is going to be huge and it’s going to make tons of money. But is the movie really as good as everyone is saying it is? The answer is NO!! I had the opportunity to see the movie the other day and although the movie is good, it’s not great by any means. In fact it’s not even the second best Marvel movie to date.  My order of Marvel films would be Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Marvels Avengers, and possibly Civil War.  The film is a sequel to Winter Solider but it feels at times like an Avengers film and a set up for other Marvel films to come, I am looking at you Black Panther and Spider-Man.

The movie does focus on the bromance between Steve (Chris Evans) and Bucky (Sebastian Stan) for the most part but there are other subplots crammed in this movie. In fact the name of this movie should have been Captain America: Bromance With Too Many Subplots. We have the love story with Steve/Bucky, Sokovia Accords, Baron Zemo revenge plot, introducing T’Challa, introducing Spider-Man, Tony dealing with mommy and daddy issues, Vision/Wanda romance, oh and not to mention the Steve/Agent 13 romance. The first hour of the movie is basic Marvel formula and filler. To be honest if it were not for some cool action scenes and the introduction of Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), this would have been a snooze fest.

For months now I have seen people tear Batman v Superman apart for its first hour being slow but yet Captain America does the same thing and gets a pass. Another thing I disliked about this movie was how mopey and depressed Captain America looked all the time. Does he ever smile or want to be happy? No wonder Tony wants to punch him in the mouth. Also Batman v Superman has seen its fair share of jokes from the infamous “Martha” scene. Well let me tell you how “Civil War” gets started, because Captain America has a school boy crush on Bucky. He hears his name and goes soft and allows another wasted villain in the MCU to get the upper hand. He even later admits that it was his fault due to this. But somehow this gets a pass and is so emotionally heavy?  I was floored when I saw this scene and thought how is this any different from Batman feeling the way he did when he heard Superman say the name “Martha”. It’s not but yet Civil War is a masterpiece and Batman v Superman is sitting with a 28% on biased RottenTomatoes.

Another issue I have with the film is the wasted villains. Crossbones (Frank Grillo) is a joke, seriously he is a walking punchline who obviously did this movie for a paycheck. Baron Zemo (Daniel Bruhl) is a waste of a really good actor and besides him being a string puller doesn’t provide much else to the movie. Why does Marvel hate their villains so much?  Speaking of string pullers, I remember Lex getting so much hate for being the one who orchestrated the fight between Batman/Superman. Lex was a much better villain and better developed than Marvel did with Zemo. Zemo just seemed like some angry kid out for revenge.

Other issues that I had with the movie were with the constant jokes at every turn. Some scenes were going so good and they would ruin it with a punchline or cheesy one liner. This movie explored a more flawed Tony (Robert Downey Jr.) which I loved. He felt bad about the Ultron incident and wanted to atone for that. There were scenes he was so good in but would stop being serious to throw a joke in. And do not get me wrong this movie has a lot of great scenes in it and some great acting but the jokes were too much. I felt like the Russo’s went back and said this movie is too serious so lets throw some jokes in so people wont get bored. DC gets panned for this all the time but its works for the tone of their films. Civil War is trying to explore real life consequences of destruction and death but Marvel feels like humor will make it all better. Wrong!!! Humor can be a good sidebar but don’t ruin the integrity of the film by making it a joke fest. During the climatic battle one of the combatants actually stops to ask if anyone has some orange slices! Are you kidding me? Here both sides are fighting for a cause and the Russo’s decide hey let’s get this guy to ask for some candy mid fight. Cheap laughs are the norm for what is driving Marvel films. They are afraid to take risks and be serious with their product.

Ok now to what I really liked about the film. Yes I did like the movie! I loved the emotion Stark showed throughout and the final battle made me more #TeamIronMan than ever before. The last 15 minutes of the movie is by far the best parts. The scenes with Stark where the only ones I ever felt emotion. I loved Black Panther, Boseman nailed the role and the accent. You will wish he had more screen time. I was not sure how I would feel about Tom Holland as Spider-Man but this kid was amazing. His scenes with Tony were well done and they had great chemistry together. When he came on-screen as Spider-Man it was a laugh out loud moment. He does not shut up the entire time he is on-screen and that was the best part. He talks so much trash to all the fighters that you just think to yourself, “This is how Spider-Man should be”.  He has a lot more screen time than I expected and I really wanted to see more of him. Black Panther and Spider-Man:Homecoming are my two most anticipated Marvel films now.  Can they change that terrible name though?

I really liked seeing more of Vision (Paul Bettany) and his struggles with trying to fit in with the world. Other than that I really did not care about the other actors. I enjoyed the few scenes Paul Rudd was on-screen but he was just comedic relief and added nothing more. I had no emotional connection with any of the others. I did feel this was the best movie we have seen War Machine (Don Cheadle) in. His fight scenes were very good and his friendship with Tony was really on full display this time.

The airport scene I felt was well done but not the best fight scene ever done in a movie or comic-book movie. There was humor in too many places and you never really felt worried for anyone except Rhodes during the one scene shown in every trailer. Speaking of which, if you have seen all the trailers and TV spots then you have seen 3/4 of the movie. I still don’t know why Marvel chooses to show us everything before it comes out.  But its fine its Marvel and it will get a pass.

Final rundown:

Pro’s – Iron Man, Black Panther, Spider-Man

Airport showdown and Final Showdown

Cons– Too many jokes

Too many characters

Too many subplots

Rest of the cast just falls flat

No risks taken

Wasted Villains

 

My score: 6/10

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