Captain America: Civil War is not only a great superhero movie, it’s arguably one of the best ever. Like Captain America: The Winter Soldier, this film is a smart, funny and, at times, gripping thriller. Marvel’s done it yet again.
The story picks up after the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron. With all the havoc and damage the Avengers has, depending on how you look at it either caused or helped to prevent, a political firestorm has erupted. The government wants a system installed so that people with abilities don’t have complete autonomy to run all over the globe and cause more collateral damage. This causes a rift with the team, specifically Captain America (Chris Evans) and Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.). Cap thinks heroes should be free to do what they can to save humanity, free of all government intervention while Iron Man is fully on the side of the government and its new Secretary of State, General Thaddeus Ross (William Hurt). Things come to a breaking point, people choose sides and eventually an all-out, spectacular battle featuring some of earth’s mightiest heroes and one teenaged web-slinger.
A lot of the film focuses on the question of who are the Avengers? Are they superheroes or are they rogue vigilantes, able to do whatever they please in the name of justice? Who is responsible for all of the casualties after a battle with aliens from another world? You’d think that Captain America, a product of the US Military, would be on the side of the government and Stark would be opposed to any sort of rules and regulations, but it’s totally opposite and it’s interesting to see why each of them, why all of the heroes, have chosen their respective sides.
Marvel laughs at DC in terms of their films. Batman v Superman was a mess, the only saving grace being Affleck’s Batman. It was incoherent, the action scenes were difficult to follow and the villain – whoever he was – was a CGI fail. Even with only 3 heroes, the story was scattershot. Now think about this, Civil War has 12 different heroes in this film. That’s a huge amount and some could have easily been pushed to the fingers. But to directors Joe and Anthony Russo and writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely’s credit, each character has their moment(s) to shine.
There’s a sequence where all of the heroes, including Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Bucky (Sebastian Stan), War Machine (Don Cheadle), Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) and Black Panther (a perfect Chadwick Boseman), are battling each other, friend pummeling friend, and it just filled me with joy to see this. It’s something right out of the comics and it’s brought to life in the best way you can imagine. It’s long but never do you get tired of it, that’s how good it is. And it’s helped out by Tom Holland’s Spider-Man, wisecracking and flinging his body all over the place.
This is Marvel’s best film to date and all of the praise it’s getting is well deserved.