The Marvel manusha that has conquered the blockbuster has become boring. It is all of the same thing, with them always knowing that you will go and see the movies because they are superheroes and the success of much better pictures by them (Iron Man and The Avengers) keeps us coming to see the latest efforts.
But this consistency also lends to an opportunity for creativity. To play with some new things but still know that you will make your quota. This is what Captain America 2 does in its action department, but still it can’t figure out how to be compelling with story.
Captain America 2 catches up with the stars and stripe hero following the events of The Avengers where he has begun to work for SHIELD doing spy-type missions with the always lovely Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson). The theme of the film is Steve Rogers’ (Chris Evans) attempt to become a part of a modern world that he knows nothing about. But where the movie forgets to help its theme out is giving us a legitimate, or at least believable reason, to feel for him.
Luckily for us, Evans does a fantastic job of trying to sell Rogers’ emotions, something the script forgets to give to him. We are shown reasons why he may be sad. The guy is a fish out of water in the modern world and holds ideals that don’t line up with the SHIELD higher ups, specifically Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford). We are shown ties to his past that may show his bitterness towards the real world, a visit to his old gal Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) while she sits in a nursing home and the realization that his best friend Bucky Barnes is the “Winter Soldier” assassin that is terrorizing him also seems to hit him in the core.
But I never felt bad for Rogers after these moments because they seemed like they were flung in there for the sake of feeling bad for him, especially with Peggy Carter. The script felt like it was too wrapped up in setting up a political thriller to give Rogers any time and that was frustrating. Chris Evans has shown to be one of the better Avenger heroes that can act and he has to do everything he can here to keep you interested in this hero.
Where the film hits its best moments are with the action. Directors Anthony and Joe Russo crafted a very fun movie and the action mimics classic, engaging fight sequences that make you cringe and cheer. Forfeiting the more CGI driven action that plagued Iron Man 3 or Thor: The Dark World, Captain America 2 carried more power in its action scenes and felt more like sequences rather than a computer demo.
Specifically, the opening fight scene, which takes place on a boat and probably should of been injected into Captain Phillips displays some of the best blockbuster movie action I have seen in awhile. The hits and quick and Captain America moves to each adversary with ease and flow. The other action scenes are great as well but nothing compares to the pace of that opening scene.
The Marvel train will continue to roll and it doesn’t look like it will stop anytime soon. But if Captain America 2 is anything like what they will continue to spit out, I can get back on board and believe in some fun, engaging movies from the company again.