Captain America: Civil War: Film Review

Shall we begin?


Writer: Christopher Markus,  Stephen McFeely Director: Anthony Russo,  Joe Russo Runtime: 2h27m

Full credits  

There’s really only two ways this film could go down. Good or bad. But right from the start, it was great. But this film had to happen in the manner in which it did. It eventually became an amazing ride regardless of where you stand on the core conflict. The solo cap stories are arguably the better solo films in the Marvel franchise films. This was another great entry and a good way to start phase 3.

It was announced some years ago that this movie would be coming out around this time. Then BvS said it was gonna come out on the same day.. Then the date got moved for BvS to March. And it that was a good thing for BvS. Though the nerd in me wished it happened. two versus movies at the same time.. it would have been awesome to see the tallies. This is a great story because it blatantly shows the moral of the story but in such a woven, multilayered way. Those stories are great… well sometimes. Other times they can end up like Wrath of The Titans.

The moral of this film is that friends, true friends who share a genuine friendship, need to stick together. That’s why it’s important to actually talk and learn who you’re friends are. On one side, Steve’s childhood friend is brought into his crazy world of aliens and double crosses. On the other side you have a billionaire, playboy, philanthropist, who honestly just wants to protect the world… and the few people who made him remember he too can have a heart. The film keeps in mind that the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron had to be answered.

The story is a wee bit cliche at times but they do a good job of tying elements together. And a lot of what was shown in the trailers isn’t exactly what you see in the film (love that).

I really like the position they put Rogers in. His emotional values were called into question like never before(on screen). His best friend who in all honesty, is a crook by any means of the word. While he himself is basically a cop. That’s something that gets checked and is essentially the driving story . But Rogers is who he is, and he doesn’t quit. He believes in people. It doesn’t matter what the opinion of others are. He’s gonna do what he feels is right every time. It’s part of the freedom he stands and fights for. This wasn’t so much of an arc like in the comic of the same name for the character. But more a story about who he is. and not a rebirth to a new realization/ideal like in the comics. This was the story of how he saved his friend… plain and simple. Mr. Evans steals the show every time he’s on screen. His acting is only getting better in this role.

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The Stark difference was that, Tony just wanted to save the world he really feels guilty about the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron. Which is great as this allows the events in the film to reflect the comic Civil War with regard to Stark. Mr. Downy Jr. Plays a much more compassionate Stark. There’s a lot more of a need to have the team of (new) Avengers become accountable. Stark sees the problem with the team and he hopes… he genuinely honestly hopes that the dream he sees in AoU is something he can prevent.  This new regulation seems like the gateway to such a ambitious goal. By far his standout scene is the forth wall breaking introduction to Spider-man as a character. as an actor however, I was rather moved by how he plays his first scene, and most of the third act. I felt his position in the same way as I didn’t while reading comic version to this story.

The new comer. Your friendly neighbourhood Spider-man. Marvel shocked fans when they announced he was gonna be in his teens. It paid off. There was a great dynamic in him being the younger one. It a works for a better and more complete perspective for both the audience and story. I don’t want to ruin anything but he is most definitely gonna be seen as the best spider-man/Peter parker to date. His voice alone gets you as a guy who would sound like spider-man at that age. my only issue, was how much cgi they seemingly used on the Spidey half of the character. say what you will about the Raimi, Webb directed films, but they used as much practical as they could in their films. and they were better for it.

My man, Black Panther.  My only issue with his portrayal was how his accent sounded. I didn’t entirely believe it. He sounded more like as middle eastern man than one from Africa. Black Panthers as a character beyond bad ass. Chadwick Boseman acted that very well in my personal opinion. He is an “under the radarcharacter but I’m 100% positive he just elevated him with his portrayal. It almost brought a tear to my eye.

The best thing about this film was how they handled each character. Everyone gets screen time. And everyone gets a moment to shine. As much as AoU did this…. it really didn’t.  That said, getting rid of some of the additional characters in the manner they did was a misstep. But it gels nicely with the over all story. The introduction to the teams was well handled and felt somewhat similar to the way bit happens in the comics.

Where I would like to praise this movie, is for constantly pushing the boundaries of what choreographed fight and action sequences should look like. The stuff in this film was jaw dropping.

My issues were the obvious. It’s a little long. At some point you forget it’s a movie that features heroes and then you’re wondering just why are they still fighting like this. They  sorta skimmed over the point of the Civil War (the registration act) within reason to the main story where the secondary tale took more precedence (the fight with Cap, Bucky, Stark). I hope it gets further addressed in subsequent films in phase 3. Also the manner in which they tied it all together felt like a “Martha moment (December, 16th 1991 anyone?). Lastly the post credit scenes weren’t as fun as they have been. My core issue is this is a war. You can’t just NOT have people get killed or harmed severely during a war. I want to say the sole reason why this s the way this film plays out is because of the introduction of Spidey. But who knows why.

This story was going to be ambitious no matter what. The Marvel Cinematic Universe doesn’t have the years of history, or characters that the publication has the rights too, at its disposal. various story beats have to be altered but theres still a lot there from the comic… and it has to be recognized as an accomplishment that they create team wrote and directed this gem of a film. it just hurts itself that the risks weren’t as far as they could have been.

This film isn’t flawless. But it’s again a great way to start phase 3. With the Russo Bro’s taking over, The sky is the limit with how far they can go.

Bottom Line: It’s a great film, has a few missteps but for anyone who is a fan of the characters, the story or the brand named Marvel, you won’t talk away disappointed like anyone did who sadly saw BvS. but what it was really missing, what made The comic so great was this: “We’re not fighting for the people anymore…we’re just fighting.” For Cap to say that.. as both a soldier and a guy from a relatively simpler time, was huge. it speaks to the way society is these days with our memes, rallies and slogans that can often seem like they aren’t going anywhere but to a new fight.

Rating:

  • Overall rating of the movie: 7.9 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 8 out of 10,
  • Editing: 10 out of 10,
  • Audio: 7.5 out of 10,
  • Acting: 8 out of 10,

Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Definitely worth it to see in theatres, IMAX if possible. I already can’t wait to own the movie.

Ant man: Film Review

Ant-Man_Poster-1Writer: Edgar WrightJoe CornishAdam McKayPaul Rudd, Drictor: Peyton ReedRuntime: 117m, Cast(<= link)
Who would have thought that Ant-man would be a star of any movie? Certainly not I.

I remember when Ant-Man (As Hank Pym) had his own group of “Avengers” back in the fox kids days… needless to say, it was a terrible show. Fast forward to present day and you have Scott Lang who probably is most famous for blowing up Avengers Mansion Thanks to Scarlet Witch not getting her way… oh yea. SPOILER ALERT. (note: it was in the comics and will probably never actually happen on the big screen – Avengers Disassembled arc)

But I’m drifting. A lot of what you saw in the trailers, the leaked and official images and TV spots are what you end up with in the final product. Which, turns out to be both a blessing and a curse. It’s great cause you know what to expect and then it’s just bad for the lack of surprises. Maybe I’ve been around long enough but everything that happened was pretty much expected minus a certain winged cameo. The story was fairly easy to follow. I think of any marvel film to date, this is the easiest one to get at face value, while not having a comic book friend sit beside you and explain anything. They didn’t really get in to the science of the suit either. It was a fly by that really just felt like some person yelling in the back screaming the obvious. Something to the tune of: “It shrinks, let’s move along already.” This Marvel film was more interested in being a better movie more than it wanted to be a great comic book movie (but don’t think it to be more than a comic book movie, it won’t win anything more than like an MTV movie award). That said it played more heavily to the kids at heart as it did this in the right age of being a kid.

Paul Rudd is one of those actors where you either love him or you can’t stand him. I’m always on the fence with his films but as of late, he’s been casted in fairly decent films. Comedic actors are proving to be better at this dramatic thing than some dramatic actors are (see Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul. Most of those actors are of a seasoned comedic background). When Rudd is having emotional moments, particularly with his daughter, it’s pretty clear how he feels and makes you want to root for him. I’m sure we’ve all been in a position of “I wanna do good for _____but this stupid thing is in my way“. It sucks but it’s our individual moral code and or our character facing a dilemma of such nature that make us question how far we are willing to go… that make for great stories. I love seeing dad’s get their due. Dad’s are the under valued, equally paramount parent who often get shitted on and overshadowed due to the growing number of bad ones. His performance isn’t ground breaking but it’s fairly memorable in its ambition. essentially, It felt too much like a Rudd movie as opposed to a character who to look like a hero in his daughters eyes. When he’s funny, however, it felt so organic to the medium and feel to these movies. Rather with what these movies have been missing with so much dark undertones. Mr. Rudd handled his lines so well, I wouldn’t be shocked if they came out and said most of it was improv. He’s a special talent and I’m glad he’s getting a major movie.

Hank Pym, which is the one I was hoping would have been the Ant-Man as he brings in a more interesting story as far as I’m concerned, is played by the great Michael Douglas. He too is a father of a little girl who I can only imagine is to spur up some contrasts to Scott’s character. He either played Hank with a lot of hidden agendas or the nature of the piece alluded to a bigger story for Hank in a potential sequel. He had spurts of anger which seemed so right to the character, given what he’s done in the comics. Given the age he was intended to play, I felt that it was a nice respectful performance from Douglas.

My personal favourite actor, in this, was Michael Peña. He was just fun to see. I can’t think of a movie I really dislike him in. He either has a great agent or a keen eye and understanding of his abilities, because he gets to be apart of some great films. His acting ability was more of a feat than it was artistic. His scenes arguably steal the show.

Corey  Stoll was goodt in this but I felt he was poorly directed. He very well could’ve been a great villain. It would have been nice to see him get really into it that way. His performance is Good. He isn’t afflicted in his talents on screen. I just wished it was a bit more intense and less like a high school dick head. Being the failed protégé has a considerable amount of weight in it. Someone you looked up to tossed you to the curb.. why? I can only wonder what the Game feels like after he was dropped from G-Unit. Spolier: when they said he was having negative effects from the Pym particles, I felt cheated. But it could be explained by the subtle acts we see in Hank during the film.

I wondered how up close ants would look on a giant screen. I always thought that his connection to ants would be the movies down fall. Ultimately, it wasn’t. They found a great way of not really showing them in great detail but more in a manner of seeing them pass by. I even learned a thing or two about ants which isn’t something you go in expecting. The best parts of the film are how detailed they got to showing you the world from a ants perspective, or rather one that small.

Even though the film felt rushed and I think it was the fastest filmed to date, it didn’t quite have the problems rushed films have. It’s still runs to be about 2 hours long but the pacing is consistent and fun.

Bottom line: Theres more to be desired, but what you get isn’t anything bad. It’s one of those lovable movies that can be watched by anyone and you will still have a satisfied audience. Great way to end Phase two on a high note.

Spoiler: the second post credit scene is a scene from Civil War so don’t look into it too much.

Best of phase two:
Captain America 2
Avengers 2
GOTG
Ant-Man
IM3
Thor 2

Whats your list of Phase 2 films?

  • Overall rating of the movie: 6.8 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 8.5 out of 10,
  • Editing: 9 out of 10,
  • Audio: 7 out of 10,
  • Acting: 7.2 out of 10,

Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Its not bad in Theatres, but I could of seen this at home and still enjoyed it…. sucks for people who want to watch it on their phone.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: the “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW