Well, for the second time this summer I'll be eating my words: Captain America is certainly in the upper echelon of Marvel movies.
My biggest fear was that Chris Evans would sink this movie like a ton of bricks and he ends up being its biggest asset. He nailed it. I personally might have wanted cap to feel a bit more "mature" and "wise," (this was the Cap I grew up with) but for this movie and the Avengers it is the perfect representation of Marvel's founding hero.
It's also the best movie Joe Johnston has ever directed by a mile.
If there's one "major" fault to the movie it's that it feels very "safe." It's entertaining but it's paint by numbers. At no point are you thrown a curveball - the movie does exactly as you'd expect from seeing the trailers and every other Marvel superhero movie. Nothing keeps you on your toes and there's nothing that jacks up the stakes to the point where you actually don't know what the hell is going to happen. Sometimes that's OK, though, especially when the leads are fun and the film is well-made. There's no doubt that this film does well by Captain America. It's a noble, somewhat inspiring tale of zero to hero.
What stood out:
- Loved the multiple use of Cap's costumes, how shield works and sounds.
Very clever montage sequence
- The score grew on me over the course of the movie.
- Howard Stark.
- Chris Evans acting like a hero and not a fucking idiot.
- Tommy Lee Jones injects a lot of personality into the film and has about 3 or 4 very good lines (that you haven't heard in trailers).
- Red Skull and Hydra were powerful foes but never scared me for some reason.
That's part of the film's biggest misstep - the emotion of danger was never really felt even though Johnston does a lot to demonstrate
Hydra's power and Red Skull's madness. The bad guys didn't give me the willies like, say, the Nazis from Raiders did, or Sebastian Shaw.
- The special effects were very well done.
- The 3D was hit and miss, not worth it but my theatre only played it in 3D.
- There's this rumour going around that the last 10 minutes only serves to set up the Avengers and that this movie's plot is never properly wrapped up. Well, whoever started this rumour is an idiot because the plot is tied up fine and the scene setting up the Avengers is all of 1 minute and change.
It involves Rogers waking up in a hospital bed wondering where he is, baseball game playing on the 1940s style radio. He realizes the game playing on the radio is one he actually attended in 1941 and demands what's going on. This leads to Rogers escaping this "secret facility" and ending up on the streets of NYC present day. Enter Nick Fury, end movie.
- Great closing credits sequence
- Avengers trailer is less than a minute and involves mostly rapid shots of characters and a bit of action. It starts with Cap in a gym smacking a punching bag. Thor's hair is longer and he has new gauntlets. Tony Stark has a teaser-ending line which I could not hear because of all the geeks cheering in the theatre. The tone seemed to indicate that Cap is the "star" of the Avengers movie.
- Compared to X-men: First Class, Cap feels like more of a "comic book movie" and X-men feels more like an epic genre movie.