Captain America v. Iron Man…which side shall you choose?
This is my collaboration review of Captain America: Civil War!
After a mission in Lagos, Nigeria results in a slew of collateral damage, the Avengers find themselves facing the possibility of being controlled by a UN-appointed governing body. When Captain America’s childhood friend Bucky Barnes (who [SPOILER] was the Winter Soldier in Cap’s last adventure) is framed as a suspect of an attack on the United Nations, Cap chooses to stand by his friend and pays the price when the Avengers is divided over his decision.
This is the third collaboration here on Catholic Girl Bloggin’! Today I will be joined by pro-life activist Clinton Wilcox. His Hits and Misses will be in green and mine will be in pink.
Going into this movie, I was truly scared that Captain America’s noble nature would be compromised in this installment. After watching Winter Soldier with my friends, I couldn’t gushing about Captain America’s strong sense of morality. That is when one of my friends, who I will call “M.P.” turned to me and said, “Let’s see how you feel after Civil War.” “Aww, don’t do that to me, M.P.!”
I am delighted to say that Cap comes out of this adventure with his principles intact. This character is such an honorable warrior! I love how he plants his feet firmly on the side of truth and never backs down when faced with fierce opposition. Once he makes a decision on a moral issue (such as helping Bucky instead of condemning him), there is no swaying him from his convictions. He remains the moral voice and emotional center all while never becoming a bland archetype. I said it in my Winter Soldier review and I will say it again: Captain America is a hero you can believe in! 🙂
I was not expecting the Black Panther to be such a show-stealer. I will admit that his costume is kind of terrifying mainly because the headpiece covers his whole face, as well as his incredible speed. I would not want to be caught in a fight with this guy! This makes him an invaluable addition to the Avengers team.
Spider Man is absolutely adorable! I like how he’s a believable kid character; awkward without being annoying, fumbling and wise-cracking while being skilled in his Spidey abilities. Also, this Star Wars fangirl would like to award Spidey twenty CGB brownie points for his AMAZING Empire Strikes Back reference! 😀
In my first collaboration review, which was of Batman v. Superman with Patheos blogger Monique Ocampo, one of my many grievances with that flick is how they completely botched the rivalry between the Caped Crusader and the Son of Krypton. Here the ideological differences between Captain America and Iron Man are well-conveyed. Yes, the movie does definitely lean heavily in Cap’s camp, but there is emphasis on Iron Man’s perspective on the situation they face.
Civil War really feels like two movies. It’s Captain America 3, in which they have to resolve the Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier storyline. It’s also The Avengers 2, Part II, in which the Avengers now must deal with the aftermath of the battle with Ultron, as well as fallout from their earlier battles. Both parts of the movie may have benefited from being split into two films, but even given what they had to work with, the movie worked exceptionally well. The events of Captain America 3 were used as the catalyst for the events of Civil War. Zemo is the main villain of the film (Crossbones makes an appearance in a fantastic battle scene, but is killed at the end of the scene). His family was killed in the battle against Ultron and Zemo is out for revenge. He is merely human, so he knows he can’t kill the Avengers because more powerful men than him have tried and failed, so he sets out to tear the Avengers apart. He does so by framing Barnes for the murder of several delegates by bombing a UN meeting where a piece of legislation is going to be signed to keep the Avengers in check. Zemo’s human, relatable backstory, mixed with his actually succeeding in tearing the Avengers apart makes him one of the best and most compelling villains in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (the best villains are the ones from the shows, but the villains in the movies tend to be cookiecutter supervillains). Zemo used his intellect instead of brute strength to beat the Avengers.
Civil War, even having so much to accomplish, was a fantastic movie. Most of the fight scenes were truly mind-blowing (and I don’t use that term loosely). I thought all of the CGI used was very realistic. I was fooled the entire time, and the movie didn’t feel like it was two and a half hours long, to me. Though there are many ways in which the movie deviated from the source material in the comics. It actually bears little resemblance to the comics. One of those is that in the comics, the war was over whether or not to reveal their identities to the world, as well as being accountable to the government. But in the MCU, most or all of the heroes’ identities are known, so this doesn’t play a role in the legislation the UN wants to ratify.
As I stated, the Avengers are dealing with the aftermath of their many battles. As such, the UN wants to put a reign on them. They want to specifically train the Avengers, and be in charge of where the Avengers go. Essentially, the Avengers will become a government-led team. If there’s one thing I think could have been improved, I wish there would have been more debate and deliberation before passing the legislation. There was one scene in which the Avengers were hashing it out, but the legislation was already going to be passed. They were simply deliberating on whether or not to comply.
Like Clinton, I too had an issue with how the whole “government wants to control the Avengers” dilemma is not developed enough. Granted, I’m glad that the focus was more on the budding rivalry between Captain America and Iron Man, but would have liked the politics of the Avengers issue to have been fleshed out more.
I personally didn’t care for Zemo as the villain. I get that his dirty work is best done in the shadows, but I never felt frightened of him. He just wasn’t as chilling as I had hoped. Honestly, I feel that the divide between Cap and Iron Man was enough of a conflict on its own.
I’ve now seen Captain America: Civil War twice, and I have to say the movie gets better the second time you watch. There’s so much going on in this film that you’ll undoubtedly miss some things upon first viewing.
Despite being quite different from the source material in the comics, and having to pack so much into the movie, Civil War was an incredibly well-written, well-done movie that will keep you on the edge of your seat and will excite you by its many excellent fight scenes (especially the Avengers battle in the airport). I’ve seen it both times, and neither time did it ever feel like a two and a half hour movie. This movie has made me even more excited for the upcoming Black Panther, Thor, and Infinity War movies.
Captain America: Civil War has a lot on its plate and for the most part, it succeeds in making all of its elements work. The action is well-choreographed and easier to see this time (Age of Ultron and, to an extent, Winter Soldier had some issue with action-scene-clarity). The story is properly structured and has complex aspects while still being entertaining. Iron Man has definitely grown and matured as a character, while Captain America himself is an admirable example of heroic masculinity, a trait that is desperately needed in today’s confused society.
Saint Martin of Tours, pray for us.