Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

IMDB Plot:

After being deemed unfit for military service, Steve Rogers volunteers for a top secret research project that turns him into Captain America, a superhero dedicated to defending America’s ideals.

For anyone that knew me after my teen years, it may be hard to imagine that I could relate to the pre-Captain Steve Rogers: I was thin as a stick and I really wanted to have a nice body (although I never planed fighting for America). And I watched the “unanimated series” from the 60s cartoon — and that’s my only experience — and expectation — for this movie.

Now, before anything else, one thing I worried about was “Is this a movie for Americans?” In an interview, Chris Evans said that the movie could be renamed “Captain Nice Guy” and still work, but it’s kinda hard to believe he would say something that would ruin the box-office worldwide. But the real question is not if “Captain America is ‘America, FUCK YEAH!'” but if the movie is made for Americans — somewhat, bad memories of the first Spider-Man with those bad lines like “You mess with Spidey, you mess with New York” “You mess with one of us, you mess with us all” (completely ignoring the fact that the Green Goblin was also a New Yorker, herp derp) and Spider sitting in a pole with a huge American flag for no good reason (actually, I know why they put those things there, but still!). Anyway, no, the movie is not tailor made for Americans: The cast is diverse enough, as the Allies were in the World War II. Sure, Captain America leads the story, but you have the German scientist who made Cap a possibility, the British intelligence officer and the “Howling Commands” (which are never given a name in the movie) which have British and French army guys — and never ever in the movie is mentioned how “America will win this war”. So that line of “America ideal’s” on IMDB plot is, once again, pure bullshit: It’s more “the Allies ideal’s”.

The script is on par with the other super-hero movies from the Avengers series: Good, but not “Batman Begins” level. In a way, they finally started to use the big story arc they are building for Avengers, putting hits on the future of the series there and there. Fortunately, they still manage to add character building long enough so we care about Steve Rogers enough to now want him to die in the next movie. Sure, sure, there are plot holes, but they don’t mess with the general story — even if the Hydra agents seem to have taken shooting lessons with the Storm Troopers: “Hey, look, it’s the main character and the guy that it’s kicking everybody asses here! Let’s shoot two miles over his shoulder, that should stop him!”.

Acting is mostly good. I was surprised how Chris Evans managed to make a believable “nice guy” character. Hayley Atwell makes a good (mutual) love interest for Cap, although I couldn’t really listen to her British accent. Do I need to go and say anything about Tommy Lee Jones acting as a military officer? I don’t think so. The only downside is, weirdly as it seems, Hugo Weaving as the villain. I mean, we saw him being a maniacal, ruthless villain with a big ego who thinks he can take over the whole world — and that can be said about Red Skull too. But I guess he was so worried about not doing another Agent Smith that he toned Red Skull down a bit too much, to the point that it seems, deep down, he’s not sure he can take over the world — or that he really is better than any other human. Again, another Agent Smith would work for Red Skull, but I have this feeling Hugo toned things down to not be compared to his own character.

One thing to note about the movie is the end credits. I mean, the pre-“rolling text” credits, when they put the main people names before everyone else: The did a nice mix up of American pro-war posters that, although it’s American, they are also some piece of history. Also, there is, as usual, a post-“rolling text” “more story”, but it’s not that awesome. It’s just the teaser for The Avengers but you know how teasers are. In short, not really worth staying 10 more minutes in the theater just to watch it. Wait a few days and watch it in HD on YouTube.

Overall, Captain American is really entertaining and worth watching, as much as any Iron Man or Thor movie is worth watching.