Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Captain America - A Review

I saw the film Captain America a few days ago, and frankly, it was excellent. 

A few caveats; I'll admit, I can be easy to entertain.  Put a good (or even decent) story in front of me, well acted and throw in some cool scenery, and you've probably got me for about two hours.  This does not mean I don't enjoy good films, I just feel no need to be a snob about 'art' films vs. blockbusters.  Entertain me for the two hours and I'm good.

Also, I've never cared that much for The Avengers as a comic book.  It's okay, but never hooked me, y'know?

That said, Captain America the film hit all the right buttons.  The acting was well done, the visuals were great, neither overshadowing the film or lacking.  The overall plot was good, and even had a few surprises.

*Possible spoilers ahead, read at your own peril.*

What really made this film, was the story 'moments.'  Times where they worked to bring out the characters but did so in the story.  The characterization of the Captain/Steve Rogers:
Doctor Erskine: "do you want to kill Nazis?"
Steve Rogers: "I don't want to kill anyone, but I hate bullies, no matter where they're from"
(Okay, I'm probably not remembering the dialogue verbatim, but you get the point)

Same at the end, where he's on the radio to his girlfriend and they make a date, even as he flies the plane into the arctic icecap.  The final scene is well done too.  At every turn, and kudos to Chris Evans for the portrayal, they reinforce his character without hitting the viewer over the head with it.  They wrote a story that wraps itself around both the characters and the plot, showing them both smoothly.

This is where the film succeeded and went beyond my expectations.  It was well worth the fare.

That said, stop with the 3D already!  It wasn't necessary in this film, and most films don't need it either.  It won't save a bad story, and a good story stands on its own with or without 3D.  I had laser surgery to get rid of my glasses, I certainly don't want to put them on again for your film!


Thor, the preceding 'Avengers movie' was similarly successful.  I'll give Captain America the win for being better written, but one thing I like about both is they set out to do something (i.e. introduce their respective characters) and did so very successfully.  They didn't try to overreach their goal, and by the end of each film I felt satisfied with the story and its outcome, and each film succeeded in its mission.

Also, if you haven't seen it yet, wait aaaaaaalllllllll the way to the very end of the credits and there's a teaser.  You won't be sorry.

That's my nutshell review.  Good movie, go see it.
That and I like to see examples of good writing, where the plot, characters and settings interweave and reinforce each other, rather than glaringly standing out saying 'look at me!'  It's the kind of thing I want to accomplish in my writing, and I've always preferred it in my reading.

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