Cinematic Adventures: Captain America: the First Avenger

I meant to review this over the summer after I saw it in theatres, but for some reason (I’m putting the blame squarely on the 51 Days of Disney) it never happened. This is an issue that will now be remedied.

Captain America is a damn good movie. Unlike Thor (which was a good movie in it’s own right, but it basically just existed to introduce people to the character of Thor) this movie is a complete origins story that not only introduces the character, but provides a very entertaining cinema going experience.

The film chronicles Steve Rogers transformation from a tiny, asthmatic wimp with a heart of gold to a super powered super soldier in order to fight HYDRA (HAIL HYDRA!) and the Red Skull. The plot is exceedingly simple, but it is honestly part of it’s charm. The movie was specifically written and designed to resemble the pulpiness of the original Captain America comics and to represent the 40’s in general in all it’s sepia toned glory. This design decision is precisely why the movie is special. It is heavily similar in both tone and style to the Indiana Jones films and really helps to set the time frame convincingly.

The movie has some great performances from Chris Evans as Cap, Tommy Lee Jones as his commanding officer, and Hugo Weaving as the sinister Red Skull. Weaving’s Red Skull manages to both be exceedingly comic book-y in his mannerisms and performance, but still be very evil and menacing. Chris Evans manages to bring some humanity and warmth to the super-human boy scout while balancing out the more action hero side of the role. Tommy Lee Jones was… Tommy Lee Jones. Nothing really new there, but he easily had the best and funniest lines in the movie. The real surprise of the bunch was the relative newcomer Hayley Altwell. She is really shaping up to be a great actress and I hope that she is brought back as Peggy Carter’s grand-daughter in Captain America 2, as her chemistry with Chris Evans was rather fantastic.

Quality-wise, I consider this movie to be slightly better than Iron Man (which is honestly the best superhero movie out now besides the Dark Knight, which really isn’t a superhero movie. It’s a crime movie that happens to have a superhero as it’s lead). What manages to put this movie over Iron Man for me is the music. Alan Silvestri did the score for the movie, and it is normal Silvestri (which is not a bad thing) but there is a musical number in the film done by Alan Menken. Yes, a musical number in a superhero movie. Trust me on this, it works perfectly within the story of the film.

When I saw Captain America in the theatre, I saw it in 3D and it was surprisingly worth it. It’s rather odd that all of a sudden, the film studios seemed to have figured out 3D post-conversion, as starting with Cars 2, there were 4 movies this year that were actually worth paying for to see in 3D (those movies were Cars 2, Captain America: the First Avenger, Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon, and of course the Lion King). This actually gives me hope (and makes me rather happy that my family got a 3D TV) for the future of 3D movies.

My only problem with the film is that it needed more punching Hitler in the face. Also, it made me want a Nick Fury and His Howling Commandos movie, and unfortunately that will probably never happen.

Definitely go out and check out Captain America: the First Avenger. It’s a pulpy superhero romp that manages to introduce the character, set up for the Avengers, and be a genuinely good film. I would say that I am eagerly awaiting Captain America 2, but the Avengers is a much more pressing beast to be looking forward to at the moment.

 

It should be noted that there is now a Tumblr for Adventures of a Lost Boy. It can be found over here and I mostly just post stuff related to Disney, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, and Pokemon. Also, be expecting some Ponies and Pokemon content in the coming weeks, as I don’t know how I held off this long not talking about them.

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