By the time you’re reading this the chances are I will have already watched Captain America: Civil War but to get me hyped up for the third instalment of the Captain America franchise I thought revisiting Civil War‘s predecessor would do that perfectly. Before I start I thought I best clarify why I didn’t include The First Avenger: it isn’t good. That’s about it. I don’t like the film very much but this is what leads me to my first point.
The Winter Soldier is so good. Released after Avengers: Assemble, I wasn’t sure that Cap 2 would be able to follow. Considering my opinion of the Cap 1, I initially sat down to watch the film with scepticism in my mind. I hated that because I think any approach to a new film should be untainted but that wasn’t the case. However, I was completely surprised and totally delighted. When I watched it the second time I sat after it had ended and again just revelled in how good TWS is.
In the first act Captain America, Black Widow and other S.H.I.E.L.D agents execute a plan to free hostages that are trapped on board a S.H.I.E.L.D vessel. Obviously, a some fighting occurs and it was at this point that I remembered how fantastic the choreography in this film is. The way the characters move and fight with one another, the way they use their weapons, it leaves me in awe every time I watch it. A particular favourite is when Steve is trapped in the elevator with the HYDRA agents, the fighting that occurs is compact and fast but nonetheless thrilling. The fight between Bucky and Steve on the highway is also stunning; the hand to hand combat is exciting and direct, the way Sebastian Stan handles the knife in between punches makes the trained assassin seem all the more believable.
The cinematography in TWS adds to its overall appeal. Seeming somewhat darker than Avengers: Assemble, Cap 2 uses space and light really well. Whether you’re a Marvel fan or not, it’s hard to deny that the grand, glossiness that their films have to them isn’t visually impressive. The camera work is exciting and sharp and it works really well with the film.
The film also saw introduction of a couple of new characters; Sam Wilson a.k.a Falcon makes his first appearance and I liked how he fit in with the cast. His unwavering loyalty to Captain America is refreshing, especially considering the company he keeps in Black Widow. I love Natasha and Steve’s dynamic; she’s cynical and always on the defensive, whereas he is less so. He wants to look for the best in everyone which sometimes can blind him so it’s nice that she can be his eyes when he needs them. Of course, Bucky as The Winter Soldier makes his first appearance and I’d forgotten how little he actually talks, not that this matters because I think his silence adds to his initial intimidating presence. I’m super excited to see how he’ll fit in with the team in Civil War.
Most of all, I just find Captain America: The Winter Soldier extremely appealing, it was a solid follow on from Avengers: Assemble and I can’t argue with anyone who says they think it’s better. I’m really happy to see the CA franchise grow better in quality, rather than wither away with each sequel. The reviews I’ve read for Civil War tell me I won’t be disappointed, so let’s hope they’re right!
Thanks for reading,
all the best,