“Captain America: Civil War” movie review

Civil_War_Final_Poster‘Marvel’ous! Nearly a complete departure from the conventional comic book superhero movie genre. Avengers 2.5 is a politically-charged superhero movie that will catch you off guard and provide you with a mostly non-cartoonish plot filled with well-developed conflict and character development. Witness some of your favorite Marvel superheroes secede from the Avengers and oppose those who they once fought side-by-side. Along the way, you also get to meet some new additions to the team that will provide some awkward comedic sequences in this otherwise serious movie. Deep dark secrets come to the surface that threaten the very possibility of the team ever having any hope of reunification. Captain America: Civil War is a brilliantly produced film that will have even those who typically do not care for most superhero films leaving the theatre satisfied and anticipating the next installment in the series. Although it is really an Avengers movie, there is still enough focus on the title character to support the choice of titles for this action-packed epic adventure.

Captain America: Civil War takes place not long after the catastrophic events at Sokovia and following another destructive battle, the United Nations and U.S. Government decide to intervene and put The Avengers in check. Opposing the team signing onto an international agreement defining how this group of “vigilantes,” Captain America (Chris Evans) falls away from the group and seeks his own destiny frocked with vengeance and misplaced allegiances. With the once unified team fracturing, a covert former Soviet operative is plotting the destruction of The Avengers from the inside out. Much in the vein of the American Civil War, The Avengers are split and Captain America forms his team while Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr) attempts to hold the team together and honor the agreement with the United Nations. The once inseparable Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) must choose sides and decide where allegiances truly lie.

It isn’t often that a genre typically filled with high concept, shallow plots can surprise you with a narrative radiating with anthropological and political themes and subtext. The brilliance of Captain America: Civil War is that it provides the audience with equal parts action-packed fight choreography and well-developed dramatic plot with prolific amounts of character conflict. Furthermore, the story will exceed your expectations of the ability to tap into one’s superficial response to action-packed stimuli and activate the deeper emotions of allegiance, betrayal, and self-preservation. For those who have not seen the previous movies in the Captain America series–another admirable element of this installment, is not causing those who have yet to watch the previous CA movies to feel left out of the excitement. Provided you have seen the preceding Avengers movies, this one will keep you trekking along with your favorite Avengers universe characters. There are certainly minor elements or past relationships that are introduced in the previous CA movies, but most likely you will be able to pick up on the aforementioned as you watch Civil War.

Another observation of this installment in the Captain America/Avengers franchises respectfully, is the movie’s success in both including current characters and introducing new ones without the film ever feeling too crowded, as it was with Batman v Superman. In addition to the Avengers minus Hulk and Thor, the audience is introduced to an adolescent Spider-Man (Tom Holland) and are re-acquainted with Ant Man (Paul Rudd). As I am not familiar with the comics, I cannot comment on this Spider-Man in respect to staying true to the comic, but I found this incarnation of Spider-Man to be on the verge of annoying. Perhaps that is how he is suppose to be, but it did not fit in with how he has been historically portrayed in cartoons and movies. However, the inclusion of both the respective characters did not feel forced as it so easily could have. Since the film primarily focussed on Captain America and secondly Iron Man, the large cast of characters was handled efficiently. The writers could include all these characters in one narrative, but shift the focus from character or character thus never overstimulating or overwhelming the audience with the development of such a dynamic ensemble cast.

Ordinarily, I do not speak so highly of superhero movies; but this film left me feeling quite satisfied and pleased with how well the film played off as a serious movie complete with plenty of opportunity for emotional connections. That being said, the one sequence of the movie that I did not find as entertaining or fitting is the elaborate “civil war” battle on the tarmac. Was it choreographed well? Yes. Was it instrumental in moving the plot forward? Yes. Did it effectively fit in with the rest of the mood and pacing of the film? No. Moreover, that entire sequence of scenes just felt awkward. And, that is mostly due to the inclusion of the naivety and immaturity of Spider-Man and witty/sarcastic/near-juvenile antics of Ant Man. Perhaps if only one adolescent-like character had been added, that part of the film would not have felt so awkward. As to not give away the reasons for the solemn mood of the film, I cannot go into much detail; but, the manner which this scene was written and directed just felt out of place and interrupted the otherwise excellent pacing and mood of the story. I agree that most serious movies need comedic relief in order to generate an emotional rollercoaster, but this was just a little too funny with respect to the rest of the film.

The summer blockbuster season is officially underway with the undoubtedly successful opening weekend of Captain America: Civil War aka Avengers 2.5. Unlike last year’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, this installment will take you on fantastic journey of emotional mountains and valleys of character and plot development. This film proves that a superhero movie can be both fantastically action-packed and dramatic. The political subtext will also provide friends and family countless hours of discussion and analysis. Although this is not an adult superhero movie in the way Deadpool was, there is still language and violence that may not be appropriate for young kids. Still, one of the earmarks of a summer blockbuster is a movie that can attract and please both teens and adults, and this is definitely a great example. Hopefully, this movie is an indicator of an exhilarating summer season at the cinema.

PS. Notice the nod to Disney’s D23 Club? I did!


7 thoughts on ““Captain America: Civil War” movie review

  1. I quite liked the new Spiderman, yes he was annoying but I quite liked his geeky child like persona and while I don’t think that is completely true to the comics I think this may be the best Spiderman to date. For the record I think the first films seemed to get Peter Parker right while the second lot got spiderman right with this being the first who seemed to get both.
    While he and Ant-man were a little silly I thought the film benefited from it as it was a little dour before and after with this being the bright spot to not completely bum the audience out. Which is ironic considering it was the scene where your childhood favourites beat seven bells out of each other.


    • I can grasp where you are coming from, but I am afraid that I still have to disagree with the beneficial comedic relief. YES, I agree, as I mentioned, that a serious film usually requires some comedic relief to balance out the emotions and cleans the pallet, but it just did not fit appropriately. It was very awkward. Still, I genuinely enjoyed this movie which was a surprise since I typically do not find superhero movies to be as amazing as so many find them to be. I cannot comment on Peter Parker/Spider-Man’s comparison with the comics, as you seem to have knowledge in that area; but he stuck out like a sore thumb and annoyed me with his juvenile behavior and naivety. Thanks for the comment though! I often enjoy being challenged or simply prompted to think about something differently 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Maybe they went to far in trying to emphasise his youth in a movie filled with quippy, snarky “adults”? With the same being true for “slacker, irresponsible ant man” when trying to contrast him with characters like Tony and Steve. I can certainly see where you are coming from and I think its a little silly to argue about the details as I also enjoyed the movie.


      • Fair enough 🙂 As I prefer Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Man, perhaps it pre-disposes me to not being as fair to this Spider-Man as I should. Perhaps had the only juvenile quippy, scary comments been coming from Spider-Man, I would have appreciated his inclusion more; but, having two similar personalities was just a little too much. Thanks for engaging me!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey I like hearing other peoples opinions too. Even if they are wrong 😉 j/k. I totally get where your coming from and the scene was a little out of place in the movie and I think we can both agree that the civil war ascpect was far better when focused on Cap and IM, maybe with the inclusion of BP.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Agreed. Actually, I enjoyed this one much more than the previous CA, IM, and Avengers movies. I’m still analyzing myself to figure out just why I liked it better than all the others.


  4. Pingback: You Don’t Stand a Chance: Universal Orlando’s “Halloween Horror Nights 26” review | The R.L. Terry ReelView

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