Captain America: Civil War (2016)

5:33 AM

Divided We Fall
This review contains Spoilers.
 Captain America: Civil War is directed by Anthony & Joe Russo (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) and stars Chris Evans (The Avengers, Snowpiercer), Robert Downey Jr (The Avengers, Sherlock Holmes), Scarlett Johansson (The Avengers, Lucy), Sebastian Stan (Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Martian), Chadwick Boseman (42, Get on Up), Elizabeth Olsen (Godzilla, Avengers: Age of Ultron), Paul Rudd (Ant-Man, Role Models), Emily VanCamp (Revenge, Captain America: The Winter Solider) and Tom Holland (The Impossible, In the Heart of the Sea). "Political interference in the Avengers' activities causes a rift between former allies Captain America and Iron Man". Civil War is basically Avengers 2.5 - is it just overcrowded or can it remain as smart and sophisticated as its predecessor? 

So, Captain America: Civil War is a good film - however, I do feel a little underwhelmed. I think this is because the film had such a huge buzz coming up to its release, calling it the best Marvel film ever etc and I just thought it was good - I didn't find anything new or amazing in the film. I don't know whether I'm finally feeling the wrath of the over saturation of the genre but Civil War at first is just a solid film. It definitely isn't a bad film but I am probably in the minority of people who didn't love it. I think this is partly down to the trailers - they gave all the wow moments way and most of those trailer moments were at the end of the film - I was pretty familiar with the trailers because they were so good so I was waiting for certain points to happen and they underwhelming were saved till last - Marvel didn't seem to have anything under their sleeve for Civil War to surprise audiences with - even Giant-Man was given away in early merchandise for the film! 

I think Civil War still suffers the same issue as Age of Ultron - it was just very overcrowded - no film should have that many characters. Even though the Russo brothers did an excellent job making it as clear as possible and giving each character their own B plot and reasoning for partaking in the fight - it was just a little too much! I have to say as well, Civil War actually felt like a plot for Avengers 3 merged with a Captain America movie and I really didn't like the annoying villain subplot - I just wanted to get back to the main event (Cap Vs Iron Man) whenever we were learning more details about the new villain. I think it was a mistake including this villain subplot as ultimately, it didn't need to be there and just took you out of the film. Civil War also didn't feel as smart as The Winter Solider - that film turned a superhero film into a spy thriller but Civil War wasn't really anything new - the only unique thing it did for the genre was bring in a huge bunch of Superheroes. However, Civil War still felt like a sophisticated film - it was well made and I liked what the Russo brothers did with the style of the film. 

The action was still fantastic in the film and at least, unlike Batman v Superman, the big fight wasn't just a 5 minute scene, it was a key theme throughout the whole film right till the end. The ending fight between Iron Man and Captain America was very good - it was packed full of emotion, tension and you really didn't know what the outcome was going to be. However, that fight was definitely beaten by the big one that occurs towards the middle of the film - I'm talking about the one where everyone shows up. This scene was absolutely fantastic - seeing all of these famous superheroes was spectacular (even though it interferes with the annoying villain sub-plot), the scene was able to showcase all of the skills of each hero and it is our first chance seeing Spider-Man in action. I thought Ant-Man was very humorous - all of his lines worked for me which was surprising. The battle is probably the best battle we've ever seen in a superhero film. The scene had many twists and was very fast paced - it certainly didn't feel as long as it was. I would watch this scene again and I think I need to see Civil War again for this scene as I think I would appreciate it even more the second time. All I'm saying is this scene is very very good. 

Once again, the performances are very strong across the board - all of these actors and actresses are their characters - they aren't playing them, I think they all become so good that they are immersed and lost in their characters. Chris Evans is brilliant, even though the spotlight is taken from him (even though he is Captain America and this is a Captain America movie). Robert Downey Jr is also very good - he actually comes across as likeable in the film - recently, Iron Man has become quite unlikeable and arrogant so it was nice to see him as likeable - this made it even harder for the audience to make a decision on whose side they are on. Scarlett Johansson is also very good and I knew she would step down from Iron Man's team - however, her character does just disappear at the end - where is she? Everyone else that returns is also very good. Now for the new characters, Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther makes me even more excited for his solo film - even though the after-credit scene isn't that exciting - his performance is very good and Black Panther is definitely up there with my top Avengers characters. Tom Holland as Spider-Man is also very good - even though his character is a little annoying due to how childish he is - I suppose that adds to the humour and I am very excited to see what Holland does in his solo film. I also really liked Emily VanCamp as the new Agent Carter - she got to showcase her fighting skills and I thought she was very likeable. 

The visual effects are also very good - even though the visuals are a little toned down due to the loss of Thor and Hulk, they are still impressive and there are no dud moments like there was in Age of Ultron (interaction between Black Widow and Hulk). 

The whole plot is very sophisticated - Civil War manages to bring in political elements - I like how it doesn't tell the audience what side they should be on and gives arguments both for and against. I thought it was nice to see a superhero film finally address and admit to what people criticise superhero films for - they may be saving the world but many lives are lost in the process. I thought the plot and concept was very good and entertaining. 

Captain America: Civil War doesn't disappoint and is a great kick-start to phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, I almost expected having more to say and set the bar really high for the film - it was slightly underwhelming but that doesn't make it a bad film. The performances are great and the characters are all fantastic - Ant-Man stole his scenes and Blank Panther and Spider-Man were fantastic additions. Even though the film still does suffer from being overcrowded, the plot is still sophisticated but Civil War does lack the thriller intelligence of The Winter Soldier. This isn't the best film Marvel has released but it does come close with a spectacular battle that occurs towards the middle of the film and surprisingly not the end. Civil War showcases why the Russo brothers are perfect for directing these movies. 

4 STARS

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