Review – Captain America: The First Avenger
What We ThoughtGenre: Action
What We Liked :Strong beginning, Ties wonderfully into the Avengers Universe
What We Disliked:Red Skull is a poor choice of villain, Stale Superhero story
Captain America: The First Avenger is an average summer superhero movie. It squanders most of its momentum that it earned earlier in the film. The downer ending fails to add much to the film, only a promise of what is to come.
Captain America: The First Avenger is an adequate attempt to bring the great American hero to the big screen. This is the last film in The Avengers line of superheroes before the big feature next summer. Luckily most of the movie it stands on its own and the references to greater universe (The Avengers) is fun. Others just seem to exist to remind the viewers which takes away some of the charm.
Captain America takes place in the early 1940 during World War II and follows the brave and meager Steve Rogers (Chris Evans). After countless failures to get into the Army due to his physical conditioning, scientist Abraham Erskine (Stanley Tucci) has the tools to help Rogers overcome his deficiencies.
Of course while this is happening Rogers begins a banter with the obvious love interest Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) who is also unique because she is a woman in the military in the 40′s. Of course it feels contrived, but where Thor’s romantic intrigue felt lifeless, this has a little more shall we say chemistry involved.
During the prerequisite chemistry lab sequence that eerily seems identical to the sequence in Hulk, Rogers becomes a super solider with abilities that far surpass that of a normal man.
Well good thing for the film Captain America, that it features a villain who had the same procedure done to him. Yes, Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) is featured as the villain. Red Skull was an earlier experiment gone wrong and just so happens to be a Nazi lunatic bent on world domination. Luckily, he isn’t completely dismissive because there is some genuine planning to his terror.
Toby Jones plays Red Skull’s number two and trusted scientist. A part that would’ve been easily tossed aside has a lot of depth from a genius conflicted in his loyalties. Also, of note is Dominic Cooper who plays a young Howard Stark in one of the Avenges side story lines that enhances Captain America.
Aside from that Captain America: The First Avenger plays pretty much by the numbers. Hard life, Transformation, Super Strength. It’s not Captain America’s fault that his story seems a little stale at this point, as an audience this is the fifth superhero movie in 2011.
At this point I remain conflicted about the ending. It’s a terrible plot device to set up the events in The Avengers because it’s never explained properly. On the other hand, it leaves on a downer that I only felt when I saw the original Spider-Man so many years ago which adds a little more interest to the typical superhero ending.
Captain America: The First Avenger is an average summer superhero movie. It squanders most of its momentum that it earned earlier in the film. The downer ending fails to add much to the film, only a promise of what is to come. Hopefully the superhero fatigue wears off before the big encore with The Avengers film next year.
Captain America: The First Avenger
Directed by Joe Johnston
Starring Chris Evans, Stanley Tucci, Hugo Weaving, and Hayley Atwell