Captain America: The First Avenger

Part of Marvel’s phase 1 timeline for its movies, Captain America: The First Avenger had a lot riding on it. It was the rebirth of Marvel’s greatest superhero and one of its core characters, unlike Iron Man or Thor who, while important, weren’t quite so high-profile, especially not before getting their own movies. The movie wasn’t quite the success commercially that it was expected to be, but it set the stage for the eventual The Avengers and it cemented Chris Evans as Steve Rogers, having previously played Johnny Storm in Fox’s Fantastic Four duology. I wasn’t all that big a fan of the movie, it felt too cliched, but it was decent fun.

With Captain America: The Winter Soldier due in just two months, anticipation is riding high, and I believe that this time the First Avenger will be a huge success on all levels. The trailers have certainly been quite awesome, and I suppose that’s the best that can be asked for right now.

Either way, here’s a review of the first movie.

Captain America - The First Avenger Poster

I finally got the opportunity to watch the film last night, given how it was held back in these neck of the woods till the first of the month and I was on a family holiday while a whole slew of brand new films got released.

Going into the movie, I had seriously high expectations of this movie, given how it is about “The First Avenger”, the various trailers, the hype around it, and the previous movies in the series such as Thor and Iron Man. Well, okay, Iron Man 2 as well I guess. That said, the film almost lives up to the high standards it set itself.

Chris Evans did a brilliant job as Steven Rogers, playing the part of Captain America well both before and after his transformation. He was much better than he was as Johnny in the Fantastic Four films. With this, he shows that he can definitely pull off proper, serious action roles.

Hugo Weaving was a disappointment frankly. He was given terrible, cliched dialogues that do neither him as an actor or his character any kind of justice. Not to mention that he is pretty much the paper tiger in that his evil-ness is confined off-screen, and we don’t really get a sense of how much of a villian he truly is. His entry and his exit leave a lot to be desired. The plot definitely was not worthy of a villain as phenomenal as the Red Skull.

Hayley Atwell carried off all her screen-time brilliantly, and compared with Chris Evans, they make for some good on-screen chemistry. Working as Steve Rogers’ potential love interest and his sounding and emotional board, she was played with perfection and precision. I highly doubt that her role could have been performed better by any of the other Hollywood actresses.

Dominic Cooper was another disappointment, although that has more to do with his character’s portrayal than on his own performance, which he carried off nicely. Almost as well as Hugo Weaving and he had to work with some really poor sequences.

Tommy Lee Jones, as Colonel Chester Phillips was, frankly, embarrassing. He is just old and unemotional and uninspiring to watch. This senior citizen of Hollywood should really take a longer break from the business. In many of his scenes, he almost had the gravitas to pull his character off and unlike Cooper who was brought down by his dialogue, Jones is brought down by his own performance.

Overall, I felt the film got too fast-paced in the second half and the Captain’s character build-up through the montages left a lot to be deserved. This guy was just turned into a superman (not to be confused with Superman) but we don’t really see it. A case of not enough “show, don’t tell”. I wanted to see him take down twenty bad guys together single-handedly. I wanted to see him punch through steel doors and rip them off their hinges, but that is not what we really is. So that is another disappointment.

While the whole 3D experience was fairly decent, it wasn’t up to the standard I felt was displayed in Thor or in the recent Transformers movie.The action scenes missed out on a lot of potential here I feel, as did the titular character himself. Imagine watching that big shiny shield coming straight at you through the screen! However, the proper 3D scenes were quite good and were easily distinguishable from a lot of scenes that you would otherwise be hard-pressed to tell the difference between.

And in the end, things get all rushed through like I said, and I was left feeling like I had been cheated out of my entrance fee. The Red Skull’s exit was also quite sudden and seemed like a cop-out. And the ending, well, I expected the ending to be the post-credit footage, but that was a nice surprise and one I really liked.

The movie’s track though is fantastic, really evoking the main period the movie is set in and the hero himself, which is always a nice thing.

If that end footage is anything to go by, Tony Stark is still the nice jerk we all love and Thor has some serious grudge against someone. No cookies for guessing who.

I definitely recommend the movie to all comic book fans and sci-fi fans, but don’t go in with high expectations.

Captain America - The First Avenger Poster Cast

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Posted on February 5, 2014, in Movie Reviews, Review Central and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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