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Captain America: Civil War

Coming Soon

We’re starting to run out of adjectives to describe the massive Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU for short) experience.You’d think that by this point there’d be some “reaching” leading to less than stellar plot lines. And yet, Kevin Feige and the others behind the Marvel brand seem to find new ways to engage fans. Chris Evans, the man behind the trademark shield, has now appeared in a whopping seven Marvel movies as Captain America. Robert Downey, Jr. has appeared in an almost equally impressive six Marvel movies as Iron Man, seven if you count his cameo as “just” Tony Stark in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk. That’s a lot of face time in which people have come to know, enjoy and take for granted what the duo brings to the table. For the first time however, fans get to experience what happens when these two powerhouses don’t quite see eye to eye thus coming to blows. Captain America: Civil War firmly plants audiences ringside witness the fight of the century…at least until the next one that is.
It should come as very little surprise that events from the past play a large part as to what goes down in Captain America: Civil War. Fresh off of events from Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), several members of the team, particularly Captain America (Chris Evans), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) are once again on foreign soil in an attempt to apprehend a team of bad guys. During the battle, the situation takes a turn for the worse when an unintentional explosion leads to collateral damage. And due to this latest incident, world leaders begin to unite by proposing a checks and balances system to keep the Avengers under control.
Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) aka Iron Man, agrees that something needs to be done as a compromise. Of course not all parties are as eager to implement this new hierarchy, with Steve Rogers (Evans) leading this group. A wise man once said, “with great power comes great responsibility” and those words really stick to this situation. Everything really comes to a head when Bucky Barnes / Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) allegedly commits an act of terrorism leading to an all-out manhunt. Only, as it usually is in these types of situations, things are not what they appear at first glance. Captain America: Civil War is all about uncovering the truth whether good or bad. Hopefully you have a strong back and a good shovel because this digging for answers uncovers a lot of heavy dirt. Loyalties are tested and lines are crossed. All leading to knockdown drag out fight of epic proportions.
If you’ve seen any of the trailers, tv spots, posters, etc. you already know that Captain America: Civil War isn’t simply the next standalone chapter for Cap. Even though the title lacks the official “Avengers” monniker, pretty much right from the start you realize that this chapter isn’t simply about just Captain America. Not even close. As a matter of fact, there are more recognizable superheroes featured in this movie than any Marvel movie before it. Aside from the six, YES SIX that I’ve previously mentioned, there are more. Many of these faces are familiar, such as Vision (Paul Bettany), War Machine (Don Cheadle) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner). I’m going to leave the name dropping at nine on the off chance some readers have no idea of the characters I have yet to mention.
The Russo brothers (Anthony and Joe) do a masterful job at juggling the massive talent available to them as well as utilizing this time to subtly change the overall tone of the MCU. The stakes have become much higher, as has the emotional investment. When fans have spent so much time siding with good guys over the bad guys, choices become more difficult when it’s a battle of Good versus Good. Picking a side has never been more difficult. This mental quandary speaks to the success that the Russo brothers achieve by the almost perfect development of the characters.
Marvel is as strong as ever with no signs of slowing down one iota. Captain America: Civil War will make truckloads of cash, as it should. The entire project is done on a grand scale, from the copious amount of characters to the supersized runtime (146 minutes), even the landscape that’s covered throughout the film is massive. In a go big or go home scenario, they definitely went big. And now I fear that I’ll feel somewhat cheated the next time I sit down to watch The Avengers (2012) or Avengers: Age of Ultron due to the ensemble bar being raised so high here and now.
I can only imagine what the Russo brothers are going to with the next untitled Avengers movie (previously titled Avengers: Infinity War – Part I) due out in 2018. If rumors are true, the roster of superheroes will ridiculously dwarf this one by comparison. So do yourselves a favor and check Captain America: Civil War out in theaters and enjoy the heck out of it. Even though it’s a bit darker than some of the other MCU movies, it’s still very entertaining and quite comical at times. Lastly, if you doubted this for some reason, yes there’s a mid-credits scene as well as a post-credits scene. Be prepared to sit for the full two and a half hours.

Captain America: Civil War is streaming now on the following services:
Movie Reelist Contributor: Carl Wheeler

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