To be honest, Captain America is one of those comic book characters I never cared for (A bit like the Green Lantern, and look how that turned out). He’s always struck me as a someone reeking of jingoism. He even pre-dates Team America by a good 60-odd years, but back then he had a purpose. He took on the old National Socialists and helped kids feel safer about what was going on around them and helped them love propaganda that little bit more. I’m sure my view point is not that controversial. Even Marvel/Paramount realised the character’s somewhat niche marketability and released this latest movie adaptation of old red, white and blue to the foreign markets with two titles; Captain America and The First Avenger. The latter adopted by Russia and South Korea.
So, yeah. I’m not a fan. Which is why it was all the more surprising to find myself really enjoying this two hours of WW2 comic book gumph. Captain America tells the story of how Chris Evans’s freaky CGI body becomes super-buff so he can take on Hugo Weaving’s freaky CGI head. Or something to that effect.
A lot has been made of the great efforts used to make Chris Evans look skinny. I had originally thought that they were going to blu-tac his head on to some skinny bugger in the same way they did for Fred Claus. Obviously they didn’t and the effects used are extremely well done. Unlike Fred Claus, which needs to curl up and die somewhere or be gone long enough for us to forgive Paul Giamatti. Whichever comes first.
The tone of movie works well. It was a brave move to set the entire story within World War 2. They could have gone the way of 1990’s Captain America and have him fighting Red Skull in 1993, which may have been the easier option. Don’t get me wrong. There’s about as much depth to this as there is in the eco-fable that was its predecessor. However, you’re being taken on such a ride, it doesn’t really matter.
Hugo Weaving – word class scenery chewer. That is all that needs to be said.
Oh, it has some horrible moments in it. Tony Stark’s father makes an extended cameo for no other reason than for people to go ‘ooooh, look it’s Tony Stark’s father! He has a mustache’. The underwritten romance between Evans and Hayley Atwells does grate with it’s needless will-they-won’t-they bollocks, but not enough to ruin the film as a whole. What does piss me off the return of Marvel’s favourite fucking bookend, Samuel L Jackson. It is this reviewer’s humble opinion that the sooner they do a Nick Fury movie, the sooner it will bomb harder than David Hassehoff’s effort and we can all get on with our lives, enjoying films that don’t have him in them. And if anyone dares mention it’s worthwhile because it’s linking everything together for The Avengers movie, may I offer that you go play in the traffic.
So, in summary Captain Amer-I-CA — FUCK YEAH!
It’s not that good, but I couldn’t resist that last line.