The Cap is Back! – J. A. Bove
Okay movie goers, this review is long over due, but with my recent trip to Germany and some other distractions out of the way, I’m ready to give my two cents on my favorite marvel hero, Captain America. As many of you are aware, Captain America: The First Avenger, staring Chris Evans as the iconic Steve Rogers opened in theaters a few weeks back. Even though it’s been some time since I saw the movie (watched during opening week), I still have my thoughts fresh in my mind. If you didn’t see the movie, be aware that I will reveal some spoilers.
When Disney first acquired Marvel over a year ago, I had some reservations as to how they would handle the product. As expected, the market is now flooded with super hero paraphernalia of anything and everything imaginable in the stores. Is this a bad thing? Depends on how you look at it, I suppose. Point being, if there’s a consumer out there willing to by the product, then go make your money. What concerned me most however, was how they would handle the movies and the characters portrayed in these movies.
We’ve now had three opportunities to see what Marvel/Disney could do during this past summer alone. Thor, well done. The ending was a little confusing, but all in all a good film. The X-Men movie, excellent. A very revealing tale of how the X-Men got their start. Captain America, I rank as good, not the best in the group, but good. They clearly took some liberties in the history of the characters with both Cap, and his partner Bucky Barnes, but overall it was a good portrayal of the character and his creation back in the 1940’s.
I had to admit, seeing Chris Evans’ face on this ninety-eight pound weakling looked very strange. You knew they had to do it to show the transformation, but he looked really odd. I did like the fact that they took you to the very beginning and showed you how he became who he was now. It was interesting to see the struggles he endured before becoming a super soldier, and the brief history of his family played a nice background into why he was so determined to join the army. Evans did a great job in playing the role and stayed true to the Boy Scout attitude the Captain had all throughout the movie. Well played Mr. Evans, well played, a far cry from his devil may care attitude he had while playing Johnny Storm of the Fantastic Four series.
Hugo Weaving also did an impressive job of portraying the Red Skull, the captain’s evil arch nemesis, and Hitler’s version of a super soldier. I really liked the fact that they brought you into a war torn Europe during WWII. The attention to detail as always was amazing … maybe a little too gloomy. The only time they took you out of the forties story line was in the beginning and the very end. Unfortunately for most viewers unfamiliar with the story line the beginning was a bit confusing. I had to do a little explaining to clear up some big questions.
My only beef, it there’s any to be had, was that they did make some dramatic changes to the original story line. Specifically the way they killed off Cap’s best buddy Bucky and even Cap’s own descent into the icy abyss. A far cry from the original version of being kicked off a German missile. Even the way the finished off the Red Skull, was inventive, but different. Does he come back from the prison created by the cube, or does he perish? I guess we’ll have to wait until Cap 2 for the answer to that question. No worries though, both versions were entertaining. Bottom line, it was a good film and definitely worth seeing if you’re a fan of the character, but it was probably the weakest of the three super hero movies released this summer. I do look forward to next year though, when they do the first Avengers film. This has been a long time in the making. I only hope it lives up to expectations.
So that’s it. The summer blockbusters are done. I’ve done my part to see and review every big film released this summer with two notable exceptions: The Green Lantern (never really a fan, wait for DVD) and The Planet of the Apes – looks awesome, but I’m spent for summer movies. Frankly, I don’t think I could sit through another thirty minutes of commercials and previews to get to another film. All in all, it was a great summer – now give me a book.