Some have called it Avengers 2.5. Make no mistake, this is without doubt Captain America 3. Read my review of Captain America: Civil War.
After the last Captain America film (The Winter Soldier), expectations were sky high for the next instalment. The Winter Soldier was an extremely high quality film that introduced the titular character to us in a compelling way as well as cementing the relationship between Cap and Bucky. Then we moved on to the destruction of Sokovia, brought about because of Tony Stark. We explored the increasing divide amongst members of the Avengers team during Age of Ultron.
This is effectively where we pick up in Civil War. Team Cap vs. Team Iron Man. One team is all for an overseeing body of people to keep the Avengers in check; this is the Iron Man camp. While the other team if absolutely against the idea; this is the Captain’s camp. Cap has already put his trust in a governing body in the shape of S.H.I.E.L.D. only to be betrayed and find out it was Hydra all along. After watching all the promos, you may has chosen a side. But you will constantly be changing your mind while watching this film.
You may also have worried about how high could the stakes be. The promos may have not convinced you, but you have nothing to worry about. I genuinely feared that we may lose one or two characters. Whether we do or not is for you to find out.
I only have one negative so I’ll get that out of the way. It is an ongoing struggle with the majority of Marvel movies; the token ‘bad guy’. Maybe it is just me, but the villain’s agenda seemed a little convoluted. He didn’t really have much to do. In the end, it serves the plot so not too big of an issue overall. After some thought, I may even go as far as to say that there could have been other ways to further the story making this villain unnecessary. It just means there is more time to focus on the struggle between Team Cap and Team Iron Man. I appreciate that neither of those camps were portrayed as right or wrong – it goes back and forth making it a constant struggle.
The performances are outstanding. To think that some of these actors are playing their respective characters fifth or sixth time and yet bring their A game every single time and add a layer of nuance every time is fascinating to me. It just goes to show how well these actors now know their characters, how comfortable they are with each other and how much fun they must have making these movies to continue to improve film after film. The newcomers are very impressive too; so was their introduction into the story itself. It all felt organic to the story. Chadwick Boseman brings a sense of gravitas to Black Panther which makes me very excited for his solo film. And then theres Spider-Man. The one people have been most excited to see. I won’t say much at all except that he is one of the highlights of the entire film.
The other highlight…an absolutely phenomenal action set piece at the airport. You haven’t even seen a tenth of it in the promos. I was filled with a pure sense of wonder and cinematic joy while watching it. You will see things you’ve never seen before. Quite possibly the best action scene I have seen in a comic book film.
I could continue to wax lyrical about this film. But in short, although it is still fresh in my mind, Captain America: Civil War is tied with Avengers Assemble as my favourite Marvel film so far. They nailed the drama, they nailed the action, they nailed the humour and most importantly they balanced all of that while giving all the characters their due. The Russo brothers and the writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely have done a masterful job. This is the 13th outing from Marvel in their cinematic universe and they have absolutely knocked it out of the park; surely this is unprecedented. Bring on Infinity War!!
My Score: 9/10