The debate over which is better, Marvel or DC Comics, has never been more glaring. Whether or not you prefer one over the other (I’m mostly a DC girl myself), no one can deny the fact that as a collective universe, Marvel knows what it’s doing. The Captain America movies have always been the strongest story-wise of all the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) films. And this hasn’t wavered in the latest installment, Captain America: Civil War. Combining a well-told story, character development, and phenomenal action sequences, directors Anthony and Joe Russo have proven they are more than competent at handling the juggernaut that is the MCU.
Following the events in The Avengers: Age of Ultron, the team is still going on covert missions (although how covert you can be with metal wings coming out of Falcon’s back is anyone’s guess). But after one too many mistakes and casualties that cause destruction to go unchecked wherever they go, the United Nations has given the Avengers an ultimatum: Either they sign an accord making them agents of the U.S. and other governments as needed, or they retire.
Captain Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) thinks they shouldn’t sign because they’d be taking away their individual choices, while Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) believes the team has gone long enough without being held accountable for their actions. Tensions are high between the two as they go back and forth on what to do. Things are made more complicated when The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) blows up a UN building. Captain America goes in search of his friend, knowing there’s something more to the picture that’s been painted, while Iron Man is adamant in his stance against acting on impulse and unchecked. The arrival of a mysterious man named Zemo (Daniel Brühl) also furthers the chaos and tension between the opposing teammates.
To start with, there are several layers to Civil War. The film finds a way to tie in and interconnect stories without missing a single beat. Not only that, but it also introduces new characters (Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther, Tom Holland as Spider-Man), gives them some semblance of depth and reason, all while placing them within the overall plot. They’re also likable characters with conviction and this gives us reason to want to see their solo movies when they finally come our way.
Some may argue that Civil War is just another version of an Avengers movie, but while there are so many returning team members (Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Elizabeth Olsen as the Scarlet Witch, Anthony Mackie as Falcon, Paul Bettany as Vision, and Don Cheadle as War Machine), but the central character is still Captain America and everything revolves around his story.
The film has a run time of two and a half hours and there isn’t a single moment of boredom. The action is on point and so well-choreographed. You can see everything that is going on and they’re staged mostly for face-offs instead of relying on things exploding and calling that an action sequence. For the action, watching it in IMAX is worth it.
For comic book fans and fans who have been following the Captain America films in particular, there will be immense satisfaction with this film. The Russo brothers have honestly outdone themselves, making Captain America: Civil War the strongest Marvel film to date. Filled with action, great character interaction, and humor, this superhero film is not to be missed.
Captain America: Civil War opens nationwide May 6, 2016.