'Captain America: Civil War' is an all-star team game

Saving the world comes with a great price: collateral damage. It also hurts the invincible superheroes of the world more than super-villains, who will always be defeated in the end.

It is the root of the civil war in the latest Marvel movie, where Captain America’s team locks horns with Ironman and gang. And it works. Anyone who has watched The Avengers knows Captain America, but this is not an Avenger movie. It’s a Captain America movie that follows the narrative laid down by the first two, Captain America: The First Avenger and Captain America: Winter Soldier .

We see Steve Rogers trying to save his old friend, Bucky, whose memories have been erased, from some of the other Avengers who are unforgiving of his crimes.

But in spirit, this movie feels closer to The Avengers (2012). It is a superhero ensemble that is anchored as much as to Ironman (funny, brilliant Robert Downey Jr.) as it is to Captain America (Chris Evans playing clean-cut heroism perfectly).

In superhero movies, we look for big moments, flamboyance and humour.

Civil War does all those things right. It cracks an inside-joke and makes it work for even those who aren’t clued into things.

Civil War forms the cracks from within. Captain America , who was ironically conceived as a propaganda mascot of the American government, now wants The Avengers to take things in their own hands.

Because, “We know we're not perfect, but the safest hands are still our own” he tells his comrades.

On the other hand, Ironman, the one more likely to rebel against the government, wants to play it safe and work with the State. The rest of The Avengers choose a side.

The film also keeps the tone light, best demonstrated in the movie’s centrepiece — the epic fight between the two teams that turns out to be very funny.

The origin story of Black Panther (a solid turn by Chadwick Boseman) is nicely tucked into the movie. In a small cameo, Ant Man (a hilarious Paul Rudd) wreaks havoc inside Ironman.

But it is the new Spiderman (Tom Holland), a fresh-faced school kid and a closet comic book geek with a younger, attractive Aunt May, who is likely to get the biggest cheers.

Civil War shows how effective action sequences can be when done well. Right from the opening sequence, there is a crunchy physicality to the action. It’s easy to get carried away, when you have superheroes with distinct set of powers that bamboozle audience with CGI vagueness.

We register the heavy clunk of metal as Captain uses his shield to stop a bullet and when Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) punches a kick, we feel it in the bones. Incidentally, the final showdown has something big in common with Dawn of Justice . Civil War is the lighter, funnier movie of the two.

Captain America: Civil War

Directors: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo

Cast: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Jeremy Renner, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Rudd, Tom Holland, Martin Freeman, John Slattery

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Printable version | Nov 30, 2021 12:39:29 PM |

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