THREE GUYS AND… A MOVIE
series created by Marvin Mercer and Nick Stephenson
“CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR”
written by Dominick Cappello
Well, as usual, we’re a bit behind the times. We were still posting “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” related articles when “Captain America: Civil War” was released earlier this month. Now that “X-Men: Apocalypse” has just been released, we’re finally posting our review of “Captain America” because I’ll go to the damn movies when I feel like it and not when society says I have to. Sure, it’s not always easy avoiding spoilers on anti-social media, but I still managed to avoid 99% of all “Captain America” spoilers beforehand. Not too shabby.
I was #TeamIronMan before I saw the movie and I’m #TeamIronMan after seeing the movie. It’s been awkward as of late because my sister is #TeamCap (mostly because of her crush on actor Sebastian Stan). A house divided. Hey, you don’t see me joining #TeamCap just because of Elizabeth Olsen. It seems Vision and I have similar tastes in women, but I can keep my emotions in check. So, maybe I’ll never be able to fully appreciate the Steve Rogers / Bucky Barnes fairytale bromance. Seriously, they have an unshakable bond. It’s somewhat endearing even if it forces Captain America to make decisions that are not in his best interest.
The issue at hand is collateral damage that’s been caused by The Avengers. Bureaucrats have stepped in and want to put a leash on them. It’s not a black and white issue. It’s shades of grey. William Hurt reprises his role as Thunderbolt Ross from “The Incredible Hulk”, the redheaded stepchild of the MCU, even if I personally prefer it to either “Thor” movie and the “Iron Man” sequels. You can’t avoid the similarities to the plot of “Batman v Superman” with a character being framed for a crime he didn’t commit and our heroes being manipulated into fighting each other by a seemingly weaker individual. However, Daniel Bruhl had a sharply defined motivation as Helmut Zemo whereas Jesse Eisenberg’s existential crisis as Lex Luthor in BvS wasn’t as easy to perceive or understand.
I, like many, thought this film would likely be The Avengers 3 as appose to the third installment in the Captain America series. Honestly, I feel like I just watched The Avengers 3, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I enjoyed this film far more than “Age of Ultron”. I saw a post on Instagram a few weeks ago that asked which was the better trilogy? Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy or the Captain America films? Well, my vote goes to Christopher Nolan’s films and not because I’m some rabid DC fanboy. I have many issues with “The Dark Knight Rises”. It’s because Christopher Nolan’s films were a trilogy in the truer sense of the word. A beginning, middle, and end. “Captain America: Civil War” was another chapter in an ongoing saga and not a finale for the Captain America character. It was redemption (to a degree) for the Bucky Barnes character after his fall from grace, but there is much more story to be told in upcoming films.
Hmm… Peter Parker’s Aunt May is suddenly way hotter than she used to be now that she’s played by Marisa Tomei. I don’t worship at the altar of the MCU like some others, but they keep it up with casting like this and I’ll jump on the bandwagon. Oh, and don’t you dare say that I’m objectifying her because Tony Stark mentioned how hot she was about twenty times in less than five minutes. I know that “The Amazing Spider-Man” films had their detractors, but I always liked Andrew Garfield’s performance, so I’m sorry his tenure was short-lived and I’m so tired of these constant reboots, but I’m happy with what we’ve seen thus far of Tom Holland as our friendly neighborhood web-slinger. Fingers crossed that “Spider-Man: Homecoming” isn’t another origin story. He was bitten by a radioactive spider. Thanks. We got it. What about Ant-Man? Who are you? Tony Stark torched your ass, man. He torched your ass. (That’s a “Family Guy” reference.)
Robert Downey, Jr. once again hits it out of the park as Tony Stark. He’s the least stubborn and most flexible of all the world’s egomaniacs. The Tony Stark of 2008 would never have signed the accord, but he’s matured over the course of six films (seven if you count cameos). His arrogance nearly brought about the eradication of the human race in “Age of Ultron”, so he is now willing to bend the knee for the greater good. But, as soon as he realizes that Bucky was framed for the bombing in Vienna, even after Rhodey was nearly paralyzed, Tony does what he now feels is right and he tries to assist Captain Rogers and Bucky in their battle against the other winter soldiers in suspended animation.
SPOILER ALERT… Bucky killed Tony’s parents. The shit has hit the fan. Here’s where you have to decide once and for all whether you’re #TeamIronMan or #TeamCap. I’m sorry, I know that Bucky was brainwashed by Hydra, but Tony had to try and avenge the death of his parents no matter how strained the relationship with his father was. How could he not? You’re going down, Bucky. You killed his mother. Actually, you killed both of his parents, but Tony only mentions his mother. Interesting. I guess we know who the favorite was. In the end, Steve saves Bucky, but leaves behind his mighty shield. A powerful image.
I realize that I didn’t make mention of Black Widow, Hawkeye, Sharon Carter, Falcon, or Black Panther. I even omitted that Martin Freeman makes an appearance, but it was a crowded film. I’ll try and share my thoughts on them another time. My personal favorite MCU entries thus far have been the original “Iron Man”, “The Winter Soldier”, and “Guardians of the Galaxy”. “Civil War” ranks right up there, but I prefer to wait until I viewed the film more than once before I officially announce as it as my favorite or second favorite MCU film. Sometimes you’ll enjoy a film more on repeated viewings. Sometimes less.
– Dr. Jelly
Hail Hydra (Rotten Tomatoes).
– Dr. Frisbee
Okay, what’s the fundamental difference between “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and “Captain America: Civil War” besides BvS being criticized for not being fun when it wasn’t meant to be fun? Well, longtime readers of this blog know that we’re all big pro wrestling fans. That includes Dr. Frisbee even if he won’t admit it. “Batman v Superman” is WrestleMania VI: The Ultimate Challenge. Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior. There was no long-term storyline. Hulk Hogan crossed paths with The Ultimate Warrior during the 1990 Royal Rumble Match and that was all it took. Two alpha males with no prior history with one another were going to battle it out for supremacy just because it needed to happen. I guess I can see why the meat-headed approach didn’t sit well with audiences. That’s a legitimate quibble. I don’t want to hear anymore griping about how BvS wasn’t fun. “Civil War” was WrestleMania V: The Mega Powers Explode. Hulk Hogan vs. “Macho Man Randy Savage”. A long-term storyline that showed allies gradually being pitted against one another because of circumstance beyond their control. There were multiple chapters to the Hulk Hogan vs. Randy Savage rivalry whereas Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior was self contained to one epic showdown. And guess what? I absolutely loved both matches. Suck it, haters.
I’m all about hypocrisy. Bucky promises Captain Rogers that he won’t kill anyone when attempting to flee from the authorities, but he smashes a lot of people’s heads into walls and lots of people are tossed down flights of stairs. Okay, it’s cool that you guys aren’t killing anyone, but could you not break every bone in their bodies? I mean, they’ll live, but will they live well?
As with just about any film, you can nitpick the story to death if you choose to be a stickler. No one really dares to say anything less than overwhelming positive about the MCU. I could ask someone in jest to kindly explain to me how Black Widow can constantly punch people wearing body armor and not break her hand? But, I don’t want anyone to claw my eyes out over something so innocuous. About a zillion YouTubers have produced derivative content where the smugly accuse “The Force Awakens” of being a veiled remake “A New Hope”, but if you dare mention to them that many films in the MCU have recycled the same plot over and over again, their blood boils and steam shoots out of their ears as the theme to “The Omen” starts to play in the background because you’ve just committed a terrible sin. Sorry, but I don’t need to see yet another post credit scene with Thanos smiling at camera.
I did really like the “Civil War” post credit scene. Not so much for Bucky being refrozen, but because it was used to foreshadow the upcoming “Black Panther” film, which will be directed by Ryan Coogler and released in 2018. Chadwick Boseman was excellent in “Civil War”. He was the standout character and that’s quite a feat when Mr. Robert Downey, Jr. is hanging around. I loved “Creed” and Michael B. Jordan will be in “Black Panther,” his third time working with Ryan Coogler, though it hasn’t been announced what character he will be playing at this time. It’s nice to see that Michael B. Jordan hasn’t been discouraged from making superhero movies after… Well, you know what not so fantastic movie I’m referring to.
– Dr. Rochester