It looks like Dudefest.com's Marvel Week is coming to a close. For those of you who wanted Marvel Week to be over just so you could read the WINTER SOLDIER review (I'm talking about you, mom), here it is. For the rest of you, here are the rest of the Marvel reviews from Marvel Week. Ignore SPIDER-MAN 1: SPIDER-MAN though, because that was just teen drama foreplay.
To see WINTER SOLDIER, I went to my first midnight showing since SPIDER-MAN 3: World of Darkness, so naturally I was expecting too many villains to keep track of (or care about), and a weird emo dance scene in the middle. It turns out that neither of those things plagued THE WINTER SOLDER. The movie didn't ruin a legendary villain by casting an actor best known as a whiny teenage boy to play him. Note that I'm referring to Venom in SPIDER-MAN 3, not Anakin Skywalker in STAR WARS II: CLONE ATTACK (more on that next month).
It turns out, actually, that coming into the movie, I knew absolutely nothing about the movie's villain, the Winter Soldier, from the comics, and was confused by previous trailers I'd seen for the movie because I didn't see who I thought was the Winter Soldier, Captain America, fighting wolves in the snow (preferably with Liam Neeson). (Editor's Note: Joe, are you f#$%ing serious? How the f#$% do you not know who the Winter Soldier is?)
Well first off, foul-mouthed
nerd editor, I don't know who the Winter Soldier is because no one knows who the Winter Soldier is. It's amazing how far a person can get in life without knowing who a semi-recent villain who fights a comic book hero created to capitalize on the patriotic sentiments of the 1940s is. I know people who have been able to put themselves through college without even knowing that. Surprising, right?
Secondly, I don't read comic books. Yeah. That's right. I don't. Do you want to know why? Because I'd rather watch a bunch of dudes in tight suits fighting each other than look at pictures of dudes in tight suits fighting each other. I also don't do nerd stuff like reading comic books because I'm too busy doing cool stuff like programming and playing Magic: The Gathering.
I hope I've addressed your concerns and we can move on to the actual contents of movie, because WINTER SOLDIER is pretty fantastic. There's so much to like about this movie. LACK OF SPOILER ALERT.
- Chris Evans just gets better as Captain America, and Captain America just gets better with his shield.
- We get a nice close-up ass shot of Scar-Jo in the first five or so minutes of the movie.
- Nick Fury gets a chance to be a badass.
- We finally get a black superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Falcon), and he's baller as hell. Hopefully he replaces all occurrences of Hawkeye in future MCU films.
- The Winter Soldier is possibly the best non-Loki villain in the MCU so far. I expect that he'll return. (HE BETTER)
- It has the typically solid Marvel Studios sense of humor, and keeps it light.
- There's no love interest for the Cap in it, although he and Scar-Jo share an awkward escalator kiss. (We all know how those are).
- There are a number of twists in the film, and while none of them are exactly revolutionary, they're at least surprising and engaging if you're an idiot like me.
What I think makes this film stand out among the Marvel Studio films is the fact that it's more of a political thriller than a superhero movie. It's less "feel-good-rah-rah-American-underdog" than it's predecessor, sure, but it more than makes up for that with its S.H.I.E.L.D.-centric plot, addition of Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and extra action in lieu of backstory. See it dudes.