Superhero movies have become increasingly popular, and film studios seem to be pumping them out as quickly as they can.
Unfortunately, not all of these movies are cinematic masterpieces. Sadly, some are downright dreadful. Rather than evoking joy and whimsy, they result in a nauseating pain in your stomach and a deep-seat feeling of regret for wasting the ten bucks you coughed up for the ticket.
In the case of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, I am pleased to say this was not the case.
Before I talk about the movie, I confess I did not have very high hopes for its quality. I considered its predecessor, Captain America: The First Avenger, an alright film at best. Luckily, the sequel was a huge improvement in every aspect of cinematic evaluation.
This may be a result of a wise decision by the studio to make a change in directors. The first film was directed by Joe Johnston, while the sequel was directed by the Russo brothers, Anthony and Joe.
It seems I wasn’t the only one to approve of this change. The Russo brothers were signed to direct the third installment in the series a full three months before Captain America: The Winter Soldier was released, following impressive test screenings.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier runs about two hours and fifteen minutes, which is a long time to be sitting in the theatre, but it is so consistently enjoyable that the length seems barely noticeable.
The movie blends action, drama and comedy with such finesse that there wasn’t a single point in which I found myself even mildly bored.
The action scenes are impressive and exciting, with such intricately-choreographed fighting that I found myself unable to keep up with every thrown blow. The dramatic parts capture viewer interest without being too predictable, a feat many comic book-based films fail to achieve.
The comedic lines are spread far enough apart to avoid overshadowing the plot, while still being humorous and pleasurable.
Although the film is about superheroes, it doesn’t feel quite like the other entries in the Marvel film series.
Sure, the world is in dire peril for the tenth time this decade, but rather than facing off against a larger-than-life villain with a god complex (or, in a couple cases, an actual god), Captain America (played by Chris Evans) is dealing with highly-trained mercenaries, government corruption, and his own struggles with being displaced in time by 70 years.
But don’t get me wrong: just because Cap isn’t going toe-to-toe with otherworldly demons, extraterrestrial soldiers, or Asgardian deities, it doesn’t mean the film is lacking in memorable villains.
Indeed, all the dastardly scoundrels introduced in the movie are entertaining in their own unique ways. Various talented actors portray these villainous characters, including Sebastian Stan, Frank Grillo, Robert Redford and former three-time UFC welterweight champion, Georges St-Pierre.
Whether or not you’re a comic book fan, this movie will blow you away. If you’re the kind of person who enjoys a genuinely good movie, going to see Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a decision you definitely won’t regret.