Friday, 29 April 2016


Unlike a certain other superhero film recently released, 'Captain America: Civil War' is unlikely to polarize opinion. It's a Marvel film, you see, and despite being the relative newcomers to the 'film your own characters' school, they're rapidly risen to top of the class, knocking out hit after hit by simply understanding what their fans want. Civil War is no exception, and is unsurprisingly much more than a 'who would win in a fight between...' punch fest.

Although Cap gets title billing here, Civil War is basically Avengers 3, following directly on from Age Of Ultron. We open with The Avengers kicking are as usual, but again as usual it's impossible to avoid civilian casualties when there's guns and bombs all over the place. One explosion later and the team are basically ordered to become an official task force, answerable to that most despicable of things: a committee. Tony Stark sees the sense in this, whilst Cap doesn't trust people to not have self interest and also to allow them to react quick enough. There's only one way to settle this...

So the scene is set, as The Avengers split into pro and anti factions. To actually get fists flying, however, you need a reason. Enter The Winter Soldier, last seen disappearing after saving Cap in The Winter Soldier movie. With Bucky seemingly to blame for a terrible international incident, Cap decides to grab him before the officials can, setting him squarely against Iron Man, now firmly doing what he's told. Cue stand off...

As I said earlier, this is much more than a simple series of hero on hero scraps, although the main one is a doozy. Not only do we get our usual Marvel suspects, but there's also the introduction of The Black Panther and a certain kid in a red and blue onesie. Both are handled exceptionally well, and you will be gagging for the Black Panther movie by the end, not to mention 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' in 2017. Add to this a nice return to the screen for Paul Rudd's Ant Man and the two and a half hours (yes, really) will fly by.

Much like the last Captain America film, Civil War gives a damn about plot, and a decent amount of time is spent actually having one and talking about it. The Winter Soldier is once again the device that gives the plot momentum, and poor old Bucky looks like he'll never escape his Hydra brainwashing. Whilst it's a Captain America film, Tony Stark and Iron Man are given plenty of screen time as Stark's demons are fully explored, pushing him towards an inevitable showdown. Again, it's a pretty serious film, but unlike a certain other film it finds time to make you smile as well. I mean, who'd make a two and a half hour superhero film without any light moments at all? Oh yeah....

Bold, bright, brash and brilliant, 'Captain America: Civil War' stand up alongside Marvel's other movies, and whilst some have said it's the best yet, I'd say it depends on what you're looking for. The joy of the Marvel movies is that they each tend to have something different, and to compare this to, say, 'Guardians Of The Galaxy' is pretty daft. Suffice to say it's faults are few and far between, it maintains a large cast without short changing anyone, and it's not full of plot holes. Chris Evans remains as perhaps the best piece of casting in the superhero genre, with new Spidey Tom Holland and Black Panther Chad Boseman each owning the screen as nervy kid and moody warrior respectively. Once again, when asked what kind of comic based films work best, the answer is 'make Mine Marvel'. Excelsior!

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