Movie Review: Captain America: The Winter Solider(2014)

I really can’t believe it has been this long. I mean Captain America 2 is still playing in some obscure movie theaters around me but for the most part its time to wait for it to be released on DVD. It has been a solid 6 years now that Marvel has been releasing movies now more attached to Marvel as a studio. Of course there has been Superman, Batman and Green Lantern from DC Comics. But Marvel has really stepped it up ever since Iron Man and the Edward Norton Hulk.

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Summer 2011 marked the first Captain America movie. I have to admit that I enjoyed it but the whole story behind Steve Rogers is not really that interesting. Its important but is not very interesting. Here’s why. We like Iron Man and Tony Stark because Stark is sort of a jerk, a genius, a billion dollars man and a womanizer. But what he is really known for and what makes him the most prominent in his business is his weapon making Stark industries. Here is a man who does not see the destruction of his ways..well until he gets forced to see it. Stark takes his bad boy, bad attitude, glamorous lifestyle and uses it for good. He gets the conviction and creates what everyone never would have thought he could have done. Bruce Wayne(Batman) does kind of the same thing. Both Stark and Wayne become self-made superheroes. However, Captain America is already sort of a good guy and loyal and is supposed to represent the sincere soldier patriot that we assume everyone is before they go to Iraq and Afghanistan. But this sequel plays it in a whole new and very non-boring way.

Winter-Soldier

Directors: Anthony and Joe Russo

Writers: Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely and Ed Brubaker. Based on the comic by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon.

Stars: Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Anthony Mackie, Samuel L. Jackson and Sebastian Stan

Plot/Overview: Set some time after Iron Man 3 and Thor 2 and really very soon after The Avengers, Steve Rogers is adapting to life in Washington, D.C. Jogging around the Lincoln Memorial with elapsed time effect Steve meets Sam Wilson(a.k.a. Falcon) and introduces him to music he should listen to. Steve is also accompanied by Black Widow and that Cobie Smulders girl. Steve is thrown into his next mission in partnership with a bunch of CIA renegade types(meaning, they look like renegades). An apprehension of a ship taken captive by “pirates.” The plot thickens and turns against the ones you wouldn’t expect it. Nick Fury gets ambushed in his bulletproof car(which makes for an epic scene!) and almost dies. Steve soon discovers that he can’t really trust anyone. Up comes to the surface the Robert Redford guy(Alexander Pierce) who says, “to build a better world, sometimes means tearing the old one down, and that makes enemies..” Of Course this elicits Steve’s main line of the whole movie. He says, “I used to know what is right( or the right thing to do) but I don’t know anymore!” Essentially this is the good guy Steve questioning his moral compass and pressing the issue. It gets revealed that the Winter Soldier is actually Bucky(his best friend in life before he became Captain America).

Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and battles a new threat from old history: the Soviet agent known as the Winter Soldier. I really think I even need to see this movie again. I saw it right when it came out in April and was watching in 3-D so some details have slipped my mind. In the end Falcon fights and the Captain lives on and the Winter Soldier is not dead. They really could make a third movie and I think they should.

The deeper meaning

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I think comic books throw us off because we don’t expect them sometimes to point their fingers on deep political issues, but they can serve as very relevant pieces of art that expose our justice system. I think the whole idea of shield is similar to the idea of the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. act and Homeland Security and the NSA. It seems as if in order to keep America safe from terrorism that we have to develop these multidimensional secret teams and underground operations in order to “keep America safe.” Our secret torture of prisoners( or otherwise possible terrorist) in Guantanamo Bay. Its probably not so much of a secret now but it takes place. The C.I.A. and the US government has let the people believe a lot of things in order to always cover up what really is going on. S.H.I.E.L.D. borders the line of keeping people safe and protecting them with also possibly putting our “super” heroes in harms way or in a compromising way in order to keep people safe. Its a tension and its a reality.

Do we really need these super powered freaks to keep us safe. ‘No one does good, not even one!’ How can normal people with special abilities know even how to do the right thing? Sometimes, its because they are the only ones willing to do it. Captain America borders this line and question. Power hungry people like Robert Redford in this movie will always be fighting to tear down the walls of safety and the illusion of protection. Doing right becomes more of a personal, subjective conviction, rather then a general claim that we put up as people. Steve represents the good intentions of the military but the negative imprint it leaves on men and their minds and their families.

In conclusion, “its not freedom, its fear!” The building of a new world means that the system has to be questioned and tested. Aside from all of these political thoughts the action in this movie far surpasses most of the Marvel movies. And the scene in the elevator when Captain says, “before we start, does anyone want to get out?”

Who will do what needs to be done? Even if it means compromising what you believe to be right and wrong.

Everyone should see this movie..seriously see it.

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