Last evening my son invited me to see a movie. It’s been a while since I went to a cinema. I think the last time was also with my son to see Man Of Steel. It’s been so long I don’t recall. I’ve been working on other projects and really can’t afford it anymore. So, it was a rare treat.
The previews of coming attractions are at least as interesting as the feature. Isn’t it funny how the importance of the trailers have evolved over the years. Maybe you don’t notice it as much if you go to the movies frequently. But someone like me who goes infrequently picks up on things that have changed. What impresses me most is how many movies are in production with dark, supernatural themes. Even the comedies tend toward the darker side of humor. Culturally that is intriguing, I suppose. Not quire what I make of it, though.
The latest addition to Marvel Entertainment’s ere expanding and complicated universe is another backstory for one of the Avengers. We’ve had follow up stories on Thor and Ironman. It’s Captain America’s time to shine. This movie has a different theme, though. It questions a lot of things about its own fabricated reality and in the process it makes the audience, at least those who are paying any attention, to question what’s going on in the world around us – trading freedom for security. It was handled in a not so in your face way, but one that provoked thought without preaching. And it leaves the audience to dwell on the matter, not really resolving it.
There is a flavor of realism brought into the fantasy as from the outset we see a more human and relatable side of the superhero. In the previous story lines involving Captain America we saw his origins and how out of place he felt in the craziness of the modern world that evolved since his time fighting the Nazi’s. But the clandestine Hydra that was the more sinister side of an evil Fascist power appears to have changed its approach and has somehow survived.
A Shield ship has been captured and the terrorist pirates have taken hostages. Captain and The Black Widow lead a team to rescue the hostages. Yet, there is another, more covert mission within the mission, one that is on a need to know basis and Captain America doesn’t need to know – yet. There are all the necessary twists and turns, as at first we don’t know what has been going on in the background and as it is revealed the trusted friends come together and fight to save the world against past enemies and at least one friend.
Marvel does a good job keeping a thread of continuity going between its various movies and The Winter Soldier extends the franchise, laying the foundation for Avengers 2 due to release around this time next year. In a way, this too is realistic. You see, one of the more subtle messages in the plot line is that wars never truly end and the causes for which many young people fight and sacrifice life and limb are never truly resolved.
The action is exactly what we have come to expect with the suspense played out against a seemingly impossible mission with a deadline. Think of the threat as a combination of NSA linked to killer drones on steroids. How can anyone succeed against something like that? Go see for yourself.
Entertaining movie well worth seeing, especially if you’re a fan of the Marvel universe. I’m not sure I’d give it a 5 star rating but as stories go this one was a vast improvement over the first Captain America movie. I’d give it 3.75 stars, overall.