Captain America: Civil War is a film I’ve been waiting ages for and with some trepidation, it has to be said – after an important character was killed off in the last Marvel instalment, I was afraid of more carnage this time. The main reason I’d been so excited about this one though was the return of the “Winter Soldier” (or Bucky Barnes) as I was hoping he’d feature a bit more, and he did, although perhaps not quite as much as I would have liked. (Okay, I’ll admit I’d happily watch a whole film with just him!)
Things are getting complicated in the Marvel universe now, with an enormous number of characters to keep track of. This was supposed to be the third Captain America film, ie with the main focus on him, but it felt more like another Avengers movie with just a few of the cast missing. The story is about the Captain and his best friend Bucky, who’s had his head messed with by some Russian scientists and thereby been turned into the Winter Soldier (supposedly the bad guy of the previous film). But rather than focus on them and how they rediscover their friendship, the plot is more about how the world wants to limit and/or control the Avengers by introducing an act called the Anti-Hero Registration Act. (Similar issue to the Batman/Superman movie – do the film companies spy on each other or something?) There’s the requisite villain, of course, driving a wedge between the Captain and Ironman so that we end up with two “teams” fighting each other, but that’s just part of the overall control issue.
So although I love the Avengers as a whole and very much enjoyed immersing myself in the Marvel world again, I was slightly disappointed not to have more Captain/Bucky scenes and interaction, especially since Bucky is fast turning into one of my favourites. On the whole though, this is another brilliant film with some amazing script writing – the dialogue is sassy, the plot fast-paced and although it’s a pretty long movie, I didn’t feel there was any slack anywhere. In fact, it could have lasted at least another hour as far as I was concerned!
As I said, there are a lot of characters to keep track on, but if you’ve been watching the various Marvel instalments they’re all familiar figures so you feel like you’re being joined by good friends. This time it was Ant Man, Spiderman and the Black Panther (whom I hadn’t expected!), plus a new love interest for the Captain. The chemistry between them all is fantastic (unlike the Batman/Superman duo) and you get the sense the actors are all having so much fun making these films they’ll never want to stop. Which is good, because I don’t want them to!
Yet again, I came out thinking “I can’t wait for the next one” and whichever one it is (another Thor hopefully?), I just know I’m going to love it. So keep them coming please, Marvel!
(I’m giving this Five Piranhas, although it probably should only have four and a half)
Pia Fenton writes contemporary romantic YA stories and her Northbrooke High series features UK heroines clashing with US heroes in an American high school setting. The latest one is New England TLC