2016 has been a wonderful year so far for superhero movie adaptations, and the ongoing superhero-fuelled train isn’t coming to a halt anytime soon. So Captain America: Civil War finally reaches our cinema screens, and oh boy, I might need an underwear change.
To be entirely honest, I went into this movie with very little knowledge on what I should expect, or even the slightest of clues about how this monumental superhero moment could possibly be executed perfectly for fans. But it’s safe to say the Russo brothers pulled off possibly one of the best superhero movies of all time, well, at least up there with The Dark Knight. However, the reason for this is not just because there’s so many memorable scenes from the comics being incorporated, but because it’s done so well. The mammoth of a fight scene was unforgettable, with so many superhero giants facing off and beating the holy hell out of each other. It truly was a cinematic moment to remember and cherish for our lifetimes, one which stand the test of time for being perhaps the best superhero scene that we will ever see. I mean, how often do you see Spider-Man and Captain America going ham on each other?
As for Spidey, Tom Holland KILLS it. We all know what to expect with our friendly-neighbourhood Spider-Man since Maguire and Garfield’s portrayals, but Holland provides something different, and something extra. We aren’t bored with the origin story of a hero we have become so accustomed too, instead, we meet a young, charismatic, yet quirky Peter Parker who is only now getting to grips with his new powers. The chemistry between the young Parker and the experienced Tony Stark was delightful to see, with Stark almost playing the father-I-never-had role. And with Robert Downey Jr. looking to reprise his role as our beloved Iron Man in the upcoming Spider-Man remake, Spider-Man: Homecoming, fans can look forward to seeing the pair in action once more.
What makes Captain America: Civil War the gripping film that it is, is due to audiences being able to clearly see and understand the motivations for both Team Cap and Team Iron Man. Steve Rogers eagerly detests against the Sokovia Accords, a government-drafted motion to attempt to keep the heroes in check, and also to save his childhood friend Bucky Barnes, AKA The Winter Soldier, from false murder accusations. Stark and Co., however, decide that these guidelines are completely necessary, and audiences are encouraged to empathise with the mass amount of civilian casualties caused by The Avengers’ attempts to save mankind. In short, there isn’t a moment when watching the film in which we don’t see both sides of the story, and as a result, disables us from only focusing on one party being the good guys. This is how Civil War reaches out to audiences, pulls on our heart-strings, and keeps us on the edge of our seats – something that the MCU has done so excellently over recent years.
The MCU have also gained a reputation for its light-sided humour being repeatedly cemented into its roots, and Civil War isn’t any different. More importantly though, this time around the humour is used in relevant moments and avoids the urge to shoehorn any jokes when it’s not needed. The introduction of both Spider-Man and Ant-Man into the Avengers really helps with the comedic side of the movie, with both characters cracking audiences up whenever they’re on screen. But, again, it’s relevantly used, so the humour is refreshing and immune to fatigue. Civil War also introduces Black Panther, a rather underrated hero at times with a strong moral standpoint. It’s about damn time, too.
However, the ending of the movie was a little anticlimactic for my liking. Picture this: you’re speeding down an empty road, no speed limits, no boundaries, nothing but eye-watering fun. And then BAM, a deer runs out onto the road and you have to slam on the brakes. What a dick, right? Well, this is what Civil War falls into the trap for doing. For 3/4 of the movie there’s so much going on: so much fun, so much badassery, so much intensity. And then suddenly, it slams on the brakes and next thing we know, the credits are rolling. Whilst I understand the difficulties with timing, and especially when the movie is already 2 and a half hours long, I would have preferred an extra 15 minutes to gradually reach the finale. Beggars can’t be choosers, though, right?
I had no interest in the antagonist in the movie, either. The introduction of Zemo was, at times, boring and completely uninteresting, something fans of the MCU would be disappointed about since the likes of Loki and Ultron were the complete opposite. The main fault for this, I think, is because fans are lining up to watch a movie showing a catalogue of superheroes battling against each other, and whilst that still is the case, Zemo only helps to reassure viewers that the heroes don’t actually dislike one another, and to be brutally honest; he was the only character that I really didn’t care about. Although War Machine was a close second. Also, the CGI at times was painfully bad. Yes, Iron Man’s suit, I’m looking at you. For a budget that could have covered around 20 different films, you would have thought Marvel had it covered, surely?
In the end, Captain America: Civil War was a fantastic superhero movie. It had everything fans wanted to see and more, but more importantly, it’s done so in a well-structured manner. I, for one, will never forget seeing so many superhero greats coming together to battle it out, and seeing Spidey in the mix makes it so much sweeter.