Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Marvel Media Mania: Captain America: The First Avenger

Captain America: The First Avenger was released theatrically in the summer of 2011. 1LR Previously reviewed this film here but, for the sake of completeness, we'll revisit the film again. After all, many times when you rewatch a film you come away with a completely different perspective. Originally, this movie received a 17 out of 20 from 1LR.
The script for this film is excellent. It finds just the right tone for the movie and keeps a steady balance between emotionally character development and action. As seen by previous film efforts, Captain America is very difficult to get right but this film manages to walk the line. There are tons of references not only to tie this film to the other films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe but also to the Captain America comics. I liked how the actual first Cap comics were, in the film, inspired by Cap's real success.

The character development of Cap follows the comics... up to a point. There's the Super Solider Serum and Dr. Erskine. But I really liked how the army tried to use Cap first as a lab rat then as a poster boy for war bonds. Cap doesn't get into serious action until well into the film but I didn't mind. The character development and historical stuff was more than interesting enough to hold my attention. When the action does come, you're ready for it, not saying, "Oh no! Not another fight sequence!"

Cap's evolution into the battle uniform follows his evolution as a character. The stage costume he uses is very close to the real thing from the comics but it looks intentionally dorky. The movie builds to a hybrid army fatigues and super hero outfit that looks right at home in the film. Quite a few designs, from super large tanks to rotating super planes, look as if they came straight from the pages of a comic book.

Most importantly, the movie nails the character of Steve Rogers. He's humble and inspirational all at the same time with his neverending determination. It seems like the movies always want to reinvent or modernize characters like Cap and Superman because they're "too pure to relate to" but I'm really glad that they didn't try to give Cap some strange hang-ups.

I'll admit that this film played my emotional cords when Cap's plane is going down as he's talking to Agent Carter as if it's a normal phone conversation. How often does a superhero movie make you cry?

My opinion of this film has only improved since my original viewing.

1LR Review - 18 out of 20 - It's a Solid Hit!

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