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Review: Captain America: Civil War

It doesn’t get much better than this. And I say that fully believing that Marvel can go even bigger, better and more exciting. If after more than ten movies deep into their film slate, Marvel can still produce something as amazing as Captain America: Civil War, then the future remains as bright as ever. This is the epic, spectacular, big bombast superhero movie that Marvel has been building towards all these years.

Movie Rating: 9/10 – Great.

Captain America: Civil War is a glorious mix of spectacle and drama, combining some of the most touching and important character work in the entire franchise with quite possibly the greatest bout of superhero action to ever grace the silver screen. The centerpiece ‘war’ between heroes at the abandoned airport is worth the price of admission alone. It’s worth of price of admission to every Marvel movie we’ve seen so far, building on almost each and every film to instill real emotional heft to these characters and their punches.

When Captain American, Iron Man and their allies face off in Civil War, there is real history behind it. We’ve seen the previous movies. We’ve seen the friendships and rivalries grow and build and strain. We’ve seen Steve Rogers and Tony Stark get testy in The Avengers. We’ve watched Black Widow’s character arc from the sidelines of other movies. We’ve seen Ant-Man consider calling the Avengers for help. This has been a journey.

Civil War is a movie for Marvel fans, for the people who have seen all their movies and probably held mini-marathons to gear up for this new one. It’s not ashamed of that focus, and it shouldn’t be. Marvel is producing a masterpiece on a scale never before imagined, and they’re pulling it off with such skill and excitement that I almost feel bad for other movies.

Like, do any of the previous Spider-Man movies even matter anymore? Batman v. Superman surely doesn’t.

Join me after the jump for the full review. There will be SPOILERS for Captain America: Civil War.

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Review: Captain America: The Winter Soldier

You can’t see it right now, what with the computers in the way, but I am saluting the flag. I feel an overwhelming swell of patriotism growing inside me, having taken in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. This is a damn fine country and it produces some damn fine movies about damn fine superheroes. How many does this make for Marvel? How many amazing action movies have they produced so far? The Avengers was one of the biggest movies of all time, and all three superhero follow-ups have been dynamite, with Captain America 2 probably the best of the bunch. This movie has everything. This movie is everything.

It makes me proud to be an American.

Movie Rating: 9/10 – Great.

Not that American patriotism is the driving factor of The Winter Soldier, I just needed a good opening. This movie is actually about SHIELD and the secrets it keeps, and how Steve Rogers may be the only honest man left who can get to the bottom of the mysteries that lie at the heart of the organization. SHIELD has been the glue that binds all of the Marvel movies so far. Heck, Marvel went ahead and based a whole TV show around them. But something inside SHIELD is starting to crack, and Captain America is just the sort of hero we need to save the day. He’s not flashy like Iron Man or Thor. He’s not at war with himself like the Hulk. Steve Rogers is just a man, for the most part. He’s determined and honest, and a lot tougher than most. But he’s a man who wants to do the right thing, and has the strength to stick with it when the odds seem overwhelming.

Plus he’s brought along a bunch of neat friends. Captain America: The Winter Soldier is almost as much of an ensemble film as The Avengers, and it works just as good.

In terms of sheer spectacle and excitement, The Avengers is still the best. But The Winter Soldier is of the same caliber and quality. The action and danger are very real, with ties to both The Avengers and Captain America’s first film. The characters are true to themselves, and grow beyond what we’ve seen before. And, as always, that signature Marvel wit just saturates the film. The dialogue is delightful, the banter is beautiful, and the film knows exactly when to sprinkle in the humor.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier is everything we’ve come to expect from the Marvel Movie Machine. Once again, Marvel raises the bar for action movies and superhero movies everywhere.

Join me after the jump for the full review. I’m going to try to keep SPOILERS to a minimum.

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