Phase Three of the Marvel Cinematic Universe kicked off with a bang on May 6, with the release of Captain America: Civil War.
As a longtime Marvel fan, I was excited to hear Marvel was tackling this controversial storyline and even more excited to see exactly how they would handle it. However, I still doubted the story would be told effortlessly.
With such a large cast, I was terrified either the story or characters would have to be sacrificed to make this movie work. Needless to say, Captain America: Civil War exceeded my expectations with its brilliant use of storytelling, character building and action sequences.
Now to say this is solely a Captain America film would be a lie, this movie is more like Avengers 2.5 or the sequel to the Avengers we deserved rather than Avengers: Age of Ultron.
The abundance of characters was my primary concern; I wondered if they would be able to give every character a chance in the plot or if some characters would just be there for Marvel to boast about.
I am happy to say every character in this film had a purpose and were not just plot fillers. Were some characters not given enough screen time? Of course, but every character helped move the plot along; even at times when the plot was too much to handle.
Despite the large cast size and the overbearing storyline, the film was very well organized. Every subplot fit perfectly into the main storyline and by the end of the movie, every component of the story made sense.
However, what happens in Civil War will affect the plots for future Avengers movie. It will change the course of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it. Directors Joe and Anthony Russo did an incredible job keeping the film in check while creating such an engaging story to get lost in.
While the story was fantastic, the action scenes in the film are what raise the bar for future Marvel movies.
Now, let’s get to the action.
The action scenes in this film are some of the best Marvel has put on screen. Each action sequence displayed the different strategy and talents the characters possessed and blends the use of special and practical effects seamlessly.
The action sequences especially showed off the powers and abilities of Marvel Cinematic newcomer Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) and prominent staple Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who had not only the best action scenes in the whole movie but almost stole the show from superhero bigshots Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) and Captain America (Chris Evans).
Black Panther and Spider-Man stole the show and were often some of the best parts of this fantastic movie; with the most accurate characterization on the big screen yet for Marvel. At times, it did feel like we were watching glorified trailers for Black Panther and Spider-Man’s upcoming movies, but they never felt out of place in the actual story and I am looking forward to see how they develop as characters.
What I appreciated most about the film was it wasn’t too serious. The beautiful blend of comedy and drama allowed it to feel authentic. You will be laughing throughout the entire movie.
As one of the toughest storylines Marvel has faced to date, it needed a little lighthearted humor to illustrate that in order to be realistic, without being too gritty, directors have to know how to use the grit to affect the audience. The Russo Brothers allowed the film to have humor without losing the intensity and integrity of the story.
While I enjoyed this movie, it makes me wonder if Marvel is starting to move too fast in making movies that drastically change the course of the cinematic universe. It makes me wonder if Marvel will be able to sustain this type of storytelling and overlying for their future movies, or if it will burn out before we even get there.
Despite my concerns, this film is a display of how summer blockbusters should be handled. The plot, while at times haughty, was one of the best plotlines in the franchise so far.
To die-hard Marvel fans: this film is a must see.
To marvel newcomers: the film wonderfully set itself up and viewing the previous films in the franchise is not necessary to enjoy this brilliant display of a captivating and insightful superhero movie done right.