Captain America: The First Avenger will focus on the early days of the marvel universe when Steve Rogers(Chris Evans) volunteers to participate in an experimental program that turns him into the super soldier known as Captain America. As Captain America, Rogers joins forces with Bucky Barnes(Sebastian Stan) and Peggy Carter (...more
Captain America: The First Avenger will focus on the early days of the marvel universe when Steve Rogers(Chris Evans) volunteers to participate in an experimental program that turns him into the super soldier known as Captain America. As Captain America, Rogers joins forces with Bucky Barnes(Sebastian Stan) and Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) to wage war on the evil hydra organization, led by the villainous red skull(Hugo Weaving). less
“A brilliant cast along with fabulous art direction lights up the characters which otherwise are quite dull. Although it is not an exceptionally well written piece, watching it once wouldn’t harm. Go for it!”
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Captain America: The First Avenger Audience Review
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Marvel Studios is leaving no stone unturned in the lead-up to 'The Avengers' next year. Anyone with even the most rudimentary knowledge of the superhero mythology of Marvel comics is well aware of the importance of Captain America to the Avengers; without him the team doesn't have its leader. So a movie about the origins of the captain was a requirement and now that Marvel has that out of the way more or less successfully 'The Avengers' has been well setup, plus they can turn the tale into its own franchise with relative ease.
I have to admire Marvel Studio's efforts to convert it's so called "second-tier" superheroes into viable franchise movies. The movies honestly aren't too heavy in terms of depth but are quite enjoyable and entertaining with some very inspired casting choices. 'Captain America' falls firmly in this category, where the movie is pure pulp providing almost no depth to any character (even when there is scope to) but works wonderfully as a laid-back easy watch.
Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) is a scrawny little guy with dreams of doing his bit on the battlefront in WW2 but thanks to his various ailments he gets passed over repeatedly. This however doesnt stop him from trying at almost every recruitment camp there is, until his attempts catch the attention of Dr. Abraham Erskine (Stanley Tucci) who enrolls him for a secret Army program that is looking to create "super-soldiers" thanks to a serum developed by Erskine & Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper), Tonys father. Everything goes well and Steve goes from an underweight runt to an impressively well-built lean-mean fighting machine. An accident at the lab however leaves Steve as the only "super-soldier" and the program scrapped. Steve is given the moniker of Captain America by a senator and put into service as a mascot to draw in crowds for garnering support for the war and to sell war bonds. Not satisfied with his role, Steve finds the perfect opportunity to take matters into his own hand when he learns during a trip to Italy that his childhood buddy Bucky (Sebastian Stan) is being held at a POW camp nearby.
Steve leads a one-man assault on the facility which turns out to be a testing center for HYDRA, a terrorist organization led by the nefarious Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving) who regards Nazis as redundant and weak. Rogers manages to liberate the facility and also learns the identity of Schmidt is the Red Skull thanks to his physical attributes as a result of taking an earlier version of Erskine's super-soldier serum. With one resounding success under his belt, Captain America is assigned more daring missions as a leader of the Howling Commandos. The Red Skull in the mean time has plans of global domination which he plans to pull off using the Tesseract, an ancient artifact filled with the "power of the gods". So will Captain America be able to stop the Red Skull? How will this movie lead into the Avengers?
The movie gets the casting bang on right. With a character as bland as Captain America who is essentially a straight-jacket hero with almost no shades of grey it's difficult to constantly make him watchable but Evans manages to bring in the right amount of earnestness, innocence and that little smirk when he gets something right. They tone down the jingoism and create a character that stands as much for himself and those around him as for his country.
The art direction is nice blend of 40s and the science fiction mindset from the era but a few things can be jarring like the costumes of HYDRA's foot soldiers, where did u steal them from, the Death Star? The movie also seems to pack in far too many montages, especially the action ones seem almost like an attempt by the makers to gloss over the lack of any credible writing.
Tommy Lee Jones & Stanley Tucci much like Evans manages to infuse life into characters otherwise ridden with clichs. Knowing the story of Rogers & Peggy (Hayley Atwell) it was a disappointment how they left it here and especially not allotting it the right amount of time for fleshing out the emotional connect for the turmoil Rogers will experience no doubt in future installments. Hugo Weaving too is underutilized while Dominic Cooper feels like a poorer version of Tony Stark; John Slattery I felt did a far better & more heartfelt impression in Iron Man 2.
'Captain America' is not a great movie by any stretch of imagination, it a perfectly perfunctory origin tale to one of the blandest Marvel superheroes. It does a good job of paving the way for 'The Avengers' and provides for some perfectly harmless entertainment along the way.