Movie Review: ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’

 

The new Marvel movie “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” is being hailed by many as the best in the incredibly productive series. Granted, that’s what they said about “Thor: the Dark World,” “Iron Man 3,” “The Avengers,” and, oh you get my point.

The movie opens with a demonstration of the Captain being superhuman, a fact that is shoved in our face over and over again ad nauseam. Sometimes literally, like during the nearly half a dozen times he survives what should be a fatal fall.

While we’re on the subject of snapping the cord suspending our disbelief, let’s take a moment to talk about his shield. In the first movie, the Captain would periodically throw it and it would bounce off of

Review by Nat Edson, Staff Writer
Review by Nat Edson,
Staff Writer

something and he’d catch it. Sure, fine, whatever.

In this movie, the stupid thing ricochets back and forth a half dozen times before finally flying right back into his hands. The whole thing is so silly looking it had me starting to believe the Captain’s  super power is advanced geometry.

Speaking of not having super powers, where are all the other members of the Avengers during this? Iron Man is off stopping people who have lava bodies, and Thor is stopping the dark elves from collapsing the universe, so I’d give you those, although it seems iffy that they’d happen at exactly the same time. But what about the Hulk, or Hawkeye? What were they doing this whole time?

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not oblivious to the goal of the movie. You can’t come to something like this expecting “The Artist,” although certain portions of the movie would have been improved by silence (I’m looking at you, Scarlett Johansson).

I’m sorry, but when your attempt at a breathy voice makes it sound like you just got done jogging the entire movie, you’ve hit a point of diminish returns. Also, wash the gravel out of your throat.

Even on mute she’s annoying. She keeps bouncing around between being a hardened killer, an angst-ridden teenager and a woman scorned. That’s two and a half extremely annoying archetypes, and the combination is worse than the sum of its parts.

You ready for the lightning round? Let’s talk about the Falcon. Why does his jetpack have wings? It’s got rockets, he never needs to flap them, and don’t say it’s to steer because control fins don’t need to be wing-shaped and have elaborate, decorative feathers.

And why do the wings have to fold into the jetpack? Cinematic convenience, I’m assuming, but folding them that many times would probably give the wings the strength of wet cardboard.

Also, and this one is almost too easy, he never reloads his guns in that movie. So unless that jetpack has some magical reloading properties to go along with its magical super strong wings, those are some  large clips in those small guns.

Okay fine, “Was it entertaining?” Yes. “Was the action cool?” Yes. “Was the plot good?” No, no it wasn’t, but that’s what you get for jamming decades of comic book plot into a two-hour movie.

I will admit, it wasn’t the worst two hours I’ve ever spent watching movies. Scarlett Johansson’s hair looked awful, but other than that, the special effects were good, and other than her acting, the acting was acceptable. It’s worth seeing but at the end of the day it feels like little more than a set up for the next Marvel movie. You know, like every Marvel movie.

SPOILER ALERT: Nick Fury is played by Samuel L. Jackson in the movie. When Marvel rebooted the franchise under the “Ultimate” moniker, they asked Jackson for his permission to make the Nick Fury character look like him. This was years before he first took on the role.

4 stars out of 5.