The third movie in the Avengers Phase Two and the sequel to the 2011 Captain America will not disappoint fans. Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a great throwback to the old spy thrillers from the 1970s but with a new school of thought. Special effects, kick-ass action scenes, superheroes, but still an engaging film about double-crossings and conspiracies. It is incredible to see directors Anthony and Joe Russo, better known for directing television shows like Arrested Development and Community, handle such a big budget blockbuster like a bunch of pros.
Steve Rogers, also known as Captain America, is on the run after being wrongly accused of betraying the agency he works for, S.H.I.E.L.D. His mission is to untangle the web of conspiracy that led all the way to the top, and see who backstabbed him. Along with the help of Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow, played by Scarlett Johansson, and an ex-paratrooper Sam Wilson, played by Anthony Mackie.
What does this movie get right? A lot, in fact. The action is expertly shot with fast paced movement very clear to see. Audiences are actually engaged in seeing how far the rabbit hole goes in terms of corruption. Captain America is much more relatable this time around then he was in his last movie. Whereas in Captain America: The First Avenger he was nothing more than a boy scout, and a military shooter, this time he has to think on his own, rely on his instincts and choose carefully who to trust.
The standout performance in this is Robert Redford, no doubt. He plays a senior leader for S.H.I.E.L.D. Redford is one of those classic actors with a legacy forever immortalized in cinema history. Being in a comic book movie, he could have easily not cared and phoned in his performance. Not so in this case. Redford’s presence makes Captain America: The Winter Soldier feel like an old school spy thriller; a throwback to an era when he was a leading man. He genuinely has fun with his role but still commits to his character.
Are there any negatives? Sadly, yes. This movie does not suffer from big problems. Instead it suffers from having a lot of little problems, little things here and there which could have easily been fixed. If it was one or two things, it would not matter, but it is constantly throughout the whole two hours. To start examining any of these little things would spoil the film. But audiences are constantly asking “wait! Why did he do that?” “Hang on, where did they get that equipment?”
The Winter Soldier is also a source of problems. The character himself is fantastic, but he is barely in it. Imagine a villain that is the Terminator, Agent Smith and Oddjob all in one, who is only in it for 10 minutes. Fans will desperately want more of him, but will be disappointed in the end. Winter Soldier and Captain America are supposed to have a certain connection, but whatever emotional drama the movie implies is absolutely lost. Marvel movies always fell short in terms of compelling villains. As of recently, Loki was the only great villain. It is good to see that now Marvel has added Winter Soldier to the list.
These Marvel movies all have one thing in common: expanding the Marvel universe. Each Avenger-related superhero deals with different issues. Iron Man deals with cyber-terrorism, The Hulk deals with military experimentation, Thor deals with space operas, and Captain America deals with politics and conspiracies. They are all different enough to be stand alone films, but still manage to interweave separate stories. Captain America: The Winter Soldier does exactly that, it presents a self-sustaining spy thriller, and it keeps throwing back references to the other Marvel movies.
Opinion By Ignacio Gatti