Director: Joe and Anthony Russo // Year of release: 2016 // Running time: 2h 26min
Cast: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan… // Watch the trailer
Seen in April and May 2016
Log Line (from IMDb)
Political interference in the Avengers’ activities causes a rift between former allies Captain America and Iron Man.
After the events of Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron, the government decides that the Avengers are too much of a wild card and that they should be put in check, answering to the United Nations and doing only what they tell them to. The Avengers are asked to sign the Sokovia Accords, and if they don’t, they’re basically outlaws from now on. From this, two sides emerge: the ones who want and will sign the Accords, and the ones who refuse; otherwise known as #TeamCap and #TeamIronMan.
For some reason, I have a very hard time writing reviews for movies. I intended to write reviews for Deadpool and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, I even have the drafts still, but I could not bring myself to do it. I don’t know why. Well, to be honest, those are kind of the most reviewed movies this year, so I don’t see how my 2 cents would make any difference or contribute anything to the debate. BUT…
I bloody loved Civil War!!! It’s been out for close to 3 weeks here in France (can you believe we got it 2 whole weeks before the US? 😮 ), I’ve seen it twice already, and I’m open to the idea of going to see it again. Yeah, I liked it that much.
To me, every aspect of that movie works. And it works because there has been a build-up that has led us here; the characters of Iron Man and Captain America have been well established over the course of the previous movies, and so when they make the decisions that they make, you understand where they’re coming from and why they both think that the other one is wrong. I’m not gonna lie, I went into the movie being sure of which team I would be on, and very quickly, I found myself rather distraught by the fact that it really wasn’t that clear cut and I kept shifting from a team to the other because they both make very compelling points.
Well at least this is true of the more important characters, because I won’t lie, but the reason for the presence and allegiance to some of them is a bit sketchy and not exactly clear (<spoilers>Especially Hawkeye, I’m sorry, but I’m kind of over the guy, and in this movie it feels like the only reason for his presence was Jeremy Renner’s paycheck</spoilers>). But they serve their purpose for the very talked about airport scene, which gives us the best superhero throw-down EVER. So it’s kind of okay. But on the other hand, there are some characters for which you think “Huh. That’s kinda weird that this person would choose this side”, and you would be right, because that character asks themselves the same question. There is no clear line between right and wrong, the audience can feel it, and most of the characters can as well, and kind of struggle with the idea of going against their friends. Because at this point, they are friends, they are team mates, and fighting each other is not easy.
Okay… I could go on and on about the motivations of the characters, but if you haven’t seen the movie yet, I’m gonna go ahead and assume that you don’t want to know about all their motivations (plus I’m running out of ways to not say the characters’ names when I talk about them), so let’s move on to the action.
Oh boy, it was awesome! There is one moment (that lasts maybe 5 seconds) in one of the earlier action sequences where I thought that the camera was too shaky; but that was it. I really like how the Russo brothers handle the action in the movie, how you feel the weight of it (and it’s not just people on wires who go up in the air when the supersoldier barely touches them for example), how you don’t get lost in all the chaos. It also seemed to me that each character has a distinctive fighting style, which I really liked, and it becomes even more obvious when you’re introduced to the Black Panther. That dude got style! He has a way of moving that I’m pretty sure I had never seen before, which made it even more exciting.
The airport scene is well worth the price of admission, but it’s not even the only great action sequence of the movie (in case you were a little turned off by the fact that the movie is 2h30 long).
For me, Captain America: Civil War ticked all the boxes of what makes a good superhero movie. Solid story telling, compelling characters and character motivations, good amount of humour, awesome action. There’s probably more but that all I can think about right now.
I could go on and on about the movie to be honest, having a point by point analysis (or just my reaction to said point), but this review is long enough already.
Praise the Russo brothers! Seriously! After knocking it out of the park with Captain America: Winter Soldier, Anthony and Joe Russo are at it again with Captain America: Civil War, and it’s just as awesome! Making a good sequel is hard enough, but making a great third instalment of a franchise, which at the same time is 13th movie in an extended universe? That seemed to be impossible to achieve.
Captain America: Civil War promises a fight between the characters that you have grown to know and love, and they do not hold their punches!
Last thing: next time you see the movie, look out for Falcon/Winter Soldier bromance. It’s awesome.
Movie posters found on IMP Awards.