Captain America: Civil War is amazing. It’s astounding. It’s awesome.
That’s just the start; look up the synonyms to ‘amazing’ in a thesaurus, and Civil War is described appropriately by every one.
All at once.
This review does not contain spoilers.
The Russo brothers build on the excellent foundation begun in The Winter Soldier to weave a clever and engaging story that pits friend against friend.
Does the confrontation seem awkward or forced (like a certain other comic movie released this summer I won’t mention)? Never.
The slow burn that drives the conflict is built over the first hour and leverages the strings already established in previous films to layer the narrative depth (again, something DC’s misfire chose not to do).
Marvel seems to have perfected the ability to draw just enough from the past without bogging down the present. It brings the Marvel Cinematic Universe to life in a way that no other company to date has even come close to replicating.
I will try hard to limit this section as the entire movie is a highlight…but here goes:
1) The Black Panther. The casting, costume, character, was perfect. The gravitas Chadwick Boseman brings to the role is exciting for the future of the MCU; once RDJ hangs up his repulsors, Boseman will be able to do a lot of the heavy lifting. As a long time Black Panther fanboy, it’s hard to believe I could get more excited for his solo flick than I already am, but T’challa is certainly the breakout performer in Civil War and I cannot wait for two full hours of him.
2) Spider-man. Marvel has the uncanny ability to secure the perfect actor for their characters and they once again nailed it with Tom Holland as the webhead. Now if Sony has the good sense to let Marvel run the show completely on Spider-man: Homecoming, we can expect a phenomenal film, something much closer to Spider-man 2 than The Amazing Spider-man 2.
3) The stunning visuals. The Russo brothers were able to capture more than a dozen superlative tableau moments; the kind of geeky “you never thought you’d see this on a movie screen” type moments that will make amazing wallpapers on your desktop.
4) Geek moments. As a huge geek myself, I found myself in awe of how many cool geek moments that were able to fit seamlessly into the overall narrative without dragging the story down.
They all delve into spoiler territory, so I won’t go into detail, but they are breathtaking.
5) The story. The story is ultimately a simple one. But you don’t realize that until the end and its simplicity in no way takes away from the satisfaction of watching it. In fact, it’s often the simple stories that are difficult to pull off convincingly but this one knocks it out of the park.
6) Balance. Every character is given a chance to shine, both on their own, and as a part of the team. Unlike previous outings where some get short shrift, the Russos make sure that everyone gets a moment in the sun, which is challenging given how many main characters and supporting characters actually appear in this film.
7) Writing. The script is easily one of Marvel’s best, to date. The jokes were plentiful but never seemed too much. The wit was razor sharp and hit the mark every time.
It was written exactly as you want it to be written, which I consider to be the highest praise I can offer to a screenwriter.
1) Overuse of close-ups. I had this complaint during Batman V. Superman as well.
There seems to be a trend to have a plethora of close ups from awkward angles. It’s the only significant negative I found, and it’s minor, but it’s there.
I hope this trend dies a quick and painless death.
You’re going to see Captain America: Civil War. It’s not really a question of if, but when. If you’re coming to GeekChicElite, for the most part, that’s just a given.
And if you’re not planning on seeing it? You really should.
It’s a better Avengers film than Age of Ultron was and benefits from having its most powerful members (Thor and Hulk) out of the picture.
I want to see it again and I got out of the theatre an hour ago. If I didn’t have to write this review I would’ve bought another ticket and watched it again immediately.
This is how comic book movies need to be made!