Captain America: Civil War (2016)

This nation was founded on one principle above all else: the requirement that we stand up for what we believe, no matter the odds or the consequences. When the mob and the press and the whole world tell you to move, your job is to plant yourself like a tree beside the river of truth, and tell the whole world — “No, you move.”

Captain America - Civil War

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures in association with Marvel Studios present…

Directed by brothers extraordinaire Anthony Russo and Joe Russo (You, Me and Dupree) the film serves as a sequel to 2011’s “Captain America: The First Avenger” and 2014’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”. It was produced as well by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely (The Chronicles of Narnia) who gained stardom when they finally able to write the screenplay for another successful franchise composed of dysfunctional super heroes. Also, it is so far the thirteenth film produced by Walt Disney from Marvel Comics’ expansive library of characters.

Originally, the crossover stories printed on July 2006 to January 2007 was a limited series written by Mark Millar and drawn by Steven McNiven where after a very unfortunate and irresponsible incident involving the still “green” superhero team of the New Warriors and a group of supervillains got into a fisticuffs, with Nitro at the end blowing up city blocks which lead to 600 deaths and worse 60 of them were children from a nearby school.

In the idea of molding the onset for the plot to take place, the film was set after the events in Washington D.C. where the city was consumed by fear seeing that three Hellcarriers from S.H.I.E.L.D. (controlled internally by HYDRA) were targeting all those are deemed a threat to their clandestine plans! Another major setback was the supposed rescuing of Sokovia and its residents from Ultron who let the country rocket into the sky and plummet it below as a means of revenge. With the collaboration of soldiers and agents, they were able to save lives that day, well at least in their own minds…

IN THE BLUE CORNER…

But what makes it work with only just a handful standing ground to their claim that what they are doing is the right thing? This is where we can see cinema making being maximized at its best and actualizing what can be done on bequeathed limits. First, this is or should be a story centered on Captain America, he is portrayed by Chris Evans (Snowpiercer) although it was not the entire case scenario where the point is, this is where his personification in the MCU could strive to continue. Albeit being the noblest of heroes, even the eulogy of Sharon Carter by Emily VanCamp (A Different Loyalty) an agent who even turned sides just to help someone who she believes to be “the man of her dreams” but also the man who does fight not only for his sake but for the welfare of others!

His best friend on the other hand has a knack of running away and not making headway to what can be done regarding his predicament as an unrepentant puppet assassin! Sebastian Stan (The Architect) has come a long way since he gained notoriety on being a killer for a supposed higher calling to start a new world order (Hail HYDRA!!!) But we can’t judge his actions considering that he was once a true patriot defending the safety and security of his beloved country the United States (not Russia, right comrade?)

While joining the shared cause is fellow soldier Anthony Mackie (Triple 9) he plays Sam Wilson also known as the Falcon, just for the record I did not like the said character in the comics even now that he became the next “Sentinel of Liberty”, I just cannot take heroes who are one trick ponies but they were able to change that perspective since he became more tactical and combat ready plus a little upgrade that can even go toe to toe with drones of today. Anthony also helps Cap take on further recruits and he got someone that can do the “inside job”!

New recruit Paul Rudd (Our Idiot Brother) is reformed burglar Scott Lang who got his break when he decided to offer his services to Henry “Hank” Pym the original Ant Man! The actor has proven his worth to be part of the ensemble cast not being just a comedy relief noting that his charisma can pull off a diversified story from last year’s successful heist film. He now represents Team Blue with a lot of promise and “bigger” shoes to fill both figuratively and literally speaking!

Coming out of nowhere like his arrows, Hawkeye has been just a role player (underrated) for quite some time already seeing him in real action for once could give Clint Barton much credit for! Jeremy Renner (The Bourne Legacy) does not need to keep a high profile with his character considering that he is the only one with kids and happily married, maybe his role is to get you up on your feet and be the best that you can do in spite of the day to day domestic concerns he has to go through!

While also an Avenger on training Wanda Maximoff codenamed the Scarlet Witch is Elizabeth Olsen (In Secret) a child in the age of “miracles” not as a mutant due to contractual obligations and issues. Wanda seemingly has moved on after the death of his brother Pietro known as Quicksilver, she was part of an undercover mission that led to the deaths of people and injuring dozens more. Now confined in the Avengers base she tries to cope up with the guilt that befell her just trying to get some grease on those squeaky wheels! (Vision offers his assistance…)

IN THE RED CORNER…

When you got someone like Iron Man to be your friend who needs enemies? Robert Downey Jr. (The Judge) is going to be paid $40 M plus incentives when the film outperforms The Winter Soldier! Talk about the talent of this guy and the ego that comes along with it. I have been a profound fan of Robert since he came back and did Iron Man eight years ago, but I think it’s unfair that you have to get five trailers on the set just because you can make a lot of money with the projects you worked with, I mean maybe its necessary evil to do so considering that this is even from his personal life we are talking about. Let’s go back now to why we need to discuss the importance of his role specifically because he is the actual anti-thesis in the comic books, as well as the only person that could actually go head on with Steve’s ideology of freedom!

The other side of the story is that there has been a rift with these two guys since 2012’s “The Avengers”. Be it may they have mutual respect and now for things to get even worse, everyone would feel the same that it was fair to get “angry” after you’ve learned that your friend knows who killed your parents and did not even spoke a whisper! This is where the line really got crossed not because of putting them back into government custody. It was really heart breaking that Tony let slip that statement before they really punched the living daylights of each other!

Everything even the kitchen sink was shoehorned to the film but they were able to find a way to make it work! Returning for duty is Don Cheadle (Traitor) who plays James Rhodes and currently pilots the armor War Machine. He’s a decorated soldier as well but the main difference with Steve is that he works for the United States government and his actions defines, leans towards the obligation in order to safeguard the people and their interests they must have accountability in every action they do!

Paul Bettany (Shelter) is Vision a former A.I. butler currently in casual clothing! He serves the interests of his team at best by being jail warden! His motives are genuinely innocent but his other side can be a destructive force so to balance these gifts, he learns what it means to be alive and covet love through his allies but most especially with Wanda (it’s a trap)! It was another ruse to bridge the story comparing to what happened with the Bruce and Natasha serving as “monsters” with needs. It was anti-climactic to say the least giving emphasis on what goes on with other members just to provide subtle promiscuity of sorts!

Heir to the throne is Prince T’Challa also known as the Black Panther! Chadwick Boseman (42) makes his debut in the MCU beget with grief while searching for righteousness and the man who supposedly linked to blow up the United Nations and killed his father the King of Wakanda T’Chaka portrayed by John Kani (Coriolanus)in the process while an original Avenger Scarlett Johansson (Under the Skin) is the Black Widow, Russia’s very own spy Natasha Romanoff! Her allegiance has been decided choosing Tony’s team for the simplest of reasons not being an enemy of the state or the world for that matter but another would be strategizing a way to know more about the intricate details of the accords in order to mitigate and form a bilateral agreement between the U.N. and the Avengers!

Now this is the guy that everyone was waiting for! Tom Holland (In the Heart of the Sea) is the latest draft pick by Team Tony! Since the said billionaire industrialist genius inventor has been tracking all activities by the supers (cough Lex cough Luthor) he went out of his way to visit the kid in New York. After all that’s been said (blackmail) and done Peter Parker the boy genius also known as Spider-Man will need an excuse letter from his benefactor for a plane ticket to Germany!

THE HAYMAKER AND WHO FALLS DOWN?

This is where we expound the given argument on what needs to be done and how does the given group of Avengers respond to the ultimatum named the Sokovia Accords by the United Nations. The Secretary of State Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross played by returning William Hurt (The Incredible Hulk) who seemed collectively sound and pacified surprisingly not mouth gunning the “green goliath” for once. His main concern now is to see to it that these people oblige to the given dictum or retire (the other spider smirks).

William’s character has been a pivotal in the meta humans affairs since 2008’s “The Incredible Hulk”, his agenda has been translated into a varying degree where he can play a sober official who could give the world’s “vigilantes” a run for their money! While Martin Freeman (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey) supports the same system Ross has, he is primarily tasked to a group that tackles counter terrorism in all levels including the super human community which leads to his actual participation as an ally to Wakanda at the same time remaining loyal to the United States!

How do we commend something that is truly fascinating to watch? In the aspect of borrowing the given concept in comic books, it was not on par in terms of the actual emotions of civilians noting the outspoken Miriam Sharpe portrayed by multi-award winner Alfre Woodard (The Forgotten) taking part on the hate they have with heroes everywhere nor was the magnitude of numbers by super powered individuals choosing a side even letting villains take part of their blood fest to impose these sanctions.

Most of us have experienced smelling burnt rubber from cars being revved up too much making problems not just with the tire but with the whole vehicle as well! This is what happens to villains (nothing to do about being super) who got too much hype and promise but ended up worn out wannabees which MCU needs to really improve on soon! The characters blemished with mediocrity having key specific roles to hold on too but ended up dead or just being passers-by in the films.

Like what happened to Baron Strucker, to Arnim Zola and especially to Red Skull? These are the cream of the crop of Captain America’s rogues and they were all written out for nothing. Now comes another set of his post-modern adversaries like Brock Rumlow portrayed by Frank Grillo (Warrior), place the guy with mechanical apertures in his hands, put a spray paint on his chest and a helmet to go with it and you get Crossbones (ooh I’m scared) after developing his assets they just said goodbye, time to blow up what a waste! Another zealot for a cause is Baron Zemo portrayed by Daniel Brühl (A Most Wanted Man), he was meant to be of another origin and of a different purpose, he will return most definitely since he needs to be prepped up to die or at least find his legacy to be a real “master of evil”! (shout out to Mr. Kevin Feige)

THE UNANINOUS DRAW AND THE REMATCH

So we find it in our conclusion that in spite of all the trials and tribulations the team faces from this point hereon, Steve will continue to serve his country by any means necessary even operating outside the law, his will to survive, promulgates his own zealots to their cause and finding out the hard way to earn their human rights.

As for Tony’s dilapidated followers, it was basically an afterthought for some of them considering that Natasha has defected, the Vision is “heartbroken”, Rhodes is walking “tall” with his robotic limbs, Peter’s back in the city of Apple and T’Challa has a different perspective now in search of justice for his fallen father!

There were great moments on how all things started, the signing, the assassination and the action scenes were phenomenal! A hint of giving Captain America a stellar cast, crowded yes but all got parts to accomplish even if they were subtle like the mission in Lagos, Vision and Scarlet Witch’s moments of love, Clint’s return out of the “blue” (pun intended), Zemo’s machinations while crawling out of the woodwork! We also have to include the changing of canon again bearing in mind this is the second time Tony got away with murder – the first time was being the creator of Ultron and not Hank Pym and now he is the one who provided the costume and the web shooters (advanced) for Peter to use in battle. Maybe they can’t integrate yet the “Iron Spider” armor seeing that it’s probably too early but would be exciting to see it on the big screen! (underoos!)

The featured scene from the recruitment of Peter was fluid and funny, the airport fight was fantastic kudos again to Spider-Man’s mouth and antics! The Siberian Facility of Hydra where another “can of worms” was opened and seeing how hurt Tony since he was offering a truce, all things got caught up in the moment where they need to vent out one’s anger and for the other to protect his brother from another mother!

I guess it would have been better if they had another story to tell but it comes to this point where the wrongs of the past for the Winter Soldier must be unearthed so that he can move on and for Steve and Bucky to have closure. Another input would be taking heed to what DC Comics and Warner Bros. offered the fans and the viewing public. To have a slugfest between two of the most iconic superheroes in the world and do the same but done much better in the aspects of writing, visuals, plot and purpose! (listen to your fans).

Strange? I thought I heard someone knocking on my “door”? Oh, it’s “Tonie” who I would like to personally thank for giving me one of the best written comic books “Civil War”, all the best my dear friend!

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