Captain America: The Winter Soldier – Movie Review
Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Writers:Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely, Ed Brubaker (concept & story), Joe Simon (comic book), Jack Kirby (comic book)
Stars: Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Redford, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Frank Grillo, Cobie Smulders, Maximiliano Hernández, Emily VanCamp
This one changes everything.
With The Winter Soldier, Marvel Studios is smack in the middle of “Phase II”–and continues to gain momentum. This new Captain America adventure is a conspiracy/action/thriller while remaining a superhero movie and it excels on all counts as it rockets through to the end. Every time you think you know what’s happening, another twist sneaks up on you so fast that you’ll develop whiplash.
There are broad sweeping themes here about the role of government in our lives–what is freedom and what is simply fear? At the same time, Steve Rogers (Captain America), now fully integrated as a S.H.I.E.L.D. operative, continues his character arc from The Avengers, no longer blindly willing to take orders, striving to do what’s right. He’s tired of deception and lies, of being kept in the dark for his own good.
The clock is ticking as S.H.I.E.L.D. is trying to get Project Insight up and running, a modern-day version of the Strategic Defense Initiative (aka Star Wars). A mysterious assassin is drifting in and out of events, known only as the Winter Soldier, creating havoc at the worst possible times. Through it all, there is mystery and confusion. The movie is structured like an onion: as one layer is peeled, the next question comes to light. Captain America moves through the movie like a tall, athletic Hercule Poirot, putting together bits of the clues and conducting interrogations. Until, finally, the answer is revealed.