After a string of mostly mediocre to disappointing movies, Marvel has once again struck a home run with its latest movie, Captain America: Civil War. Civil War hits on all levels. It’s a great action movie, a great comic book movie, and a great dramatic piece. A lot of people like to throw out phrases like, “Best movie ever made,”or “Best movie I’ve ever seen in my life,” and while the movie is far from being the best movie of all time, it’s certainly one of the best superhero movies we’ve ever had.
The movie directly follows the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron. After the catastrophic battle in Sakovia, where many innocent lives were lost, leaders from all over the world have decided that the Avengers can no longer act on their own and must be put in check.
The world has stopped seeing the Avengers as heroes and now think of them as vigilantes Together, the world leaders have complied a document known as the Sakovia Accords. This document would make the Avengers a government agency and they would only be able to act after approval from the UN. Iron Man agrees with this, Captain America disagrees. Half of the Avengers agree with Iron Man and the other half agree with Captain America. This disagreement leads to a confrontation that could tear the team up forever.
After 2012’s The Avengers, it was hard to imagine a Marvel movie surpassing and being better but, in my opinion, Captain America: The Winter Soldier did just that. It was even better than The Avengers and took the Captain America character to a whole new level. While the first Captain America movie wasn’t exactly my favorite, the second one was surprisingly very good and was my number one Marvel movie. Avengers: Age of Ultron was good but didn’t quite live up to the hype and its many story problems led to a slightly disappointing movie. With Civil War, Marvel is back on top.
A movie with so many characters often runs the risk of not having enough time for all the characters. Many characters get pushed under the rug. We saw that happen with Hawkeye in the first Avengers movie. Here however, the movie does all the characters it needs to justice. The characters that are important are all very well developed. Even the villain which, like almost all Marvel movies is kind of forgettable, has very good development and his motivations are actually pretty clear. While Tony Stark’s Iron Man has been becoming less and less interesting as the movies go on (but still highly entertaining),this is the strongest Iron Man has been in a very long time. Steve Rogers’ Captain America has been getting more and more interesting as the movies have gone on. His character over the last few movies has been very well developed. Both of these characters were utilized extremely well. The performances by both Chris Evans and Robert Downey Jr. are both terrific. Both actors know their character well and their performances shows it.
Besides the two big leads, there are many other characters that fill the screen. Ant-Man is back and is a huge riot. He’s not in it for very long, but with the time he has he makes the best of it. He’s really becoming one of my favorite characters. He has just the right amount of humor, and his powers are some of the more entertaining and thrilling moments in the battle. We’re also introduced to Black Panther in this movie and while they don’t have the time to give us a background to his character, the small amount of information we are given is enough to get behind his character and I am really excited now for his standalone movie.
The best new character from the movie though has got to be Spider-Man. This is the best Spider-Man has been in a very long time. Not since Spider-Man 2 (yes the Tobey Maguire one) has Spider-Man been this good. After the dreadful movie that was The Amazing Spider-Man 2 this is a huge improvement. Tom Holland may be the best Spider-Man yet. It’s hard to exactly say because he’s only in the movie for about 15 minutes, but he is perfect. Not only does he have the look down, but he speaks and acts exactly like a teenager would. There’s a moment where he’s battling the Winter Soldier and he says, “You got a metal arm? That’s awesome!” Then there’s the comment made to Captain America telling him how much he admires him. He’s a huge fanboy of all these characters and they way he acts around them is exactly how a teenager in the situation would act. He has the look, the wit, and the personification down perfectly. I cannot wait for his own movie.
The script is excellent. The story is well told. The beginning of the movie does feel a little bogged down with multiple storylines. It jumps around a lot at the beginning and some scenes kind of feel out of place. I also wasn’t a fan at all how they posted the location of the scene in huge big white letters across the screen. It was too big, and sometimes hard to read. But the story flowed nicely and it all built up to a exciting and mind-blowing climax.
The action scenes were spectacular. The opening chase scene was reminiscent of the opening chase scene from Casino Royale, which in my opinion is one of the best move foot chases ever, and is a very exciting opener. The airplane hanger scene is absolutely phenomenal. Each character shines and has their moment of greatness. It’s quite amazing to witness how the Russo brothers were able to give each character their shining moment when they have so many characters they have to juggle. The final climatic battle is also stunning, exciting, and heart pounding.
The Russo Brothers can not be praised enough for their direction. Watching this movie it is so clear that they understand these characters perfectly, they understand the world that they are in. Their script and their direction is just mind-blowing. They have made 2 outstanding movies and I for one cannot wait for Avengers: Infinity Wars Part 1 and Part 2. After seeing this movie, I fully trust that they will do justice to the (assumptive) final movie. Thee guys know the world so well and they portray it so well, Marvel and Disney should pat themselves on the back for find this duo.
The great thing about this movie is there isn’t really one clear right side. Each side presents very valid and strong philosophical points. There’s not point where, “Oh he’s right and he’s wrong,” it’s all very well balanced and understandable. You understand where Captain America is, you understand his reasoning. You understand how Iron Man is thinking, You even understand the main antagonists motivation. That is a sign of good writing and is yet another reason why the movie works so exceptionally well.
Captain America: Civil War is exactly what it needed to be and more. At a time where some people, including myself, have been beginning to grow tired of the superhero trend, and feel bogged down by the countless number of comic book movie we get a year, this movie rejuvenated my love for the comic book movie. This movie reminded me that comic book movies can not only be just mindless fun, but also smart, and taken seriously.
Despite the small nitpicks I had regarding the villain being not super strong, the multiple storylines at the beginning, and the annoying location splattered across the entire screen, Captain America: Civil War is one of the best Marvel movies to date (possibly the best I need to see it again before I finalize it) and is the best movie of the year so far.