Political interference in the Avengers' activities causes a rift between former allies Captain America and Iron Man. Politics. Rifts. Allies. That basically sums up this take on Civil War fairly well. And replace 'War' with 'Selfish Disputes'. There's little to sink your teeth into despite marketing "OMG ARE YOU TEAM CAP OR TEAM IRON MAN!?" The end result is Team Neither. Two and half hours of bravado and nobody dies. Oh, except Peggy Carter, she dies from old age. SHOCKING! Captain America: Civil War is not a Captain America film. Fact. Early this week the Russo Bros let slip that they feel Civil War was a reaction to Warner Bros announcing Batman v Superman. And it shows, feeling like just another product off the Disney assembly line: safe, cookie cutter fluff. Considering you all tweet and post MCU related memes, fan theories all year round, there wasn't much point in rewatching previous Marvel films before this release, it's everywhere we go, wether we want it or not. It's not comic book movie fatigue, i'm sick of this middle of the road, stale Marvel Cinematic Universe.
I didn't have issues with the running time or pace, at no point did the film drag, i enjoyed the quiet moments that built some tension, new characters are developed better (Spiderman, Black Panther) than others (Martin Freeman) but it's typical Marvel being safe and taking few risks. So because of that i won't list every character and their performance because you know what to expect, it's more of the same. For once, Marvel didn't con us with their trailers, you get what they promised. Apart from seeing Spiderman and Giant Man battling it out, there are few surprises and most of what's on screen feels uninteresting.
The amount of similarities with Batman v Superman are interesting: opening with an incident in an African city, camera panning up to a destroyed building with civilian deaths, a chat between heroes that the world is talking and "it's not your fault", bombing of a meeting where the future of our heroes is discussed, a villain who manipulates events to force the heroes to fight, and dead parents are mentioned.
Civil War looks more like a Netflix movie with it's washed out visuals and a generic, almost non existent score that has no effort put into it. Outside of the airport battle (although good in parts, it felt like a training exercise than a 'War') there isn't much to shout about. Why is that? Because there's no emotional depth, weight or threat. The opening fight in Lagos involving Crossbones and his henchmen was The Russos once again trying to imitate Bourne, ending up more like G.I. Joe with a touch of shaky cam and over editing right out of Taken 3. A jarring visual experience that tries too hard to be exciting.
One of the dumbest things nobody will pick up on (or question because it's such a 'fun' movie, right?) is Tony Stark asking a teenager who's only been Spiderman for 6 months to help him FIGHT one half of THE AVENGERS that also includes A WANTED KILLER in the Winter Soldier. Sure, it was great to see this Peter Parker, young and indecisive interacting with Tony Stark, but come on seriously, is he really goin.....oh i forgot, this is a 'fun' movie, i need to turn my brain off.
The much hyped discussion for the past year or two has been, "Who's going to die in Civil War?" Do you fanboys really think Marvel is that bold to kill off any of their main characters? There is no death for Captain America like in the comic storyline. How about Bucky? Nope. Oh you thought maybe Marvel would flip the script and kill Tony Stark? WRONG. Therefore, the whole journey is rendered meaningless. Zemo's plan of destroying an 'empire from within', it worked for a few minutes i guess? Suddenly the death of Stark's parents is important after a zillion MCU films, and Bucky was responsible. Okay then. After the dust has settled, Steve Rogers sends a letter to apologise and explain his reasons to Stark. Much like Age of Ultron, ending in such a whimper, a nice little package with a pretty ribbon on top.
I'm 35 years old. I grew up on comic books and movies like many kids. In the early 90s, i always imagined what would it be like to see my favourite superheroes on the big screen one day. Fast forward to today and thankfully i can say we all have Bryan Singer's X-Men 2, Days of Future Past, Sam Raimi's Spiderman 2, Zack Snyder's Man of Steel, Joe Johnston's Captain America and many more. These films surprised us, cinematic yet straight out the comics, familiar yet new. After phase one, I feel the MCU isn't matching the standards set. Marvel insist on pandering to general audiences with the movie equivalent of McDonalds. Going into Civil War i was ready to tune out the lame, predictable humour, but i was annoyed where the comic relief came from this time around. "Quick, Ant-Man won't have much screen time, just shoe-horn jokes that the mouth breathers will love, make Falcon say those lines!" was probably Kevin Feige's masterplan. When i can predict what the next shot/line is going to be and the audience is going to belly laugh while i sit there and cringe, i need to admit defeat, clearly these movies aren not targeted at me. If you love cheesy jokes written for 5 year olds and fall for the 'wait for it wink wink' approach to those scenes, maybe it's new to you or something, and that's the form of entertainment you think is 'awesome'.
Like i said earlier, I'm 35. I don't have time to turn my brain off and lose brain cells faster than normal because Marvel want to dumb down the comic book movie genre with borderline insulting efforts like this. I expected more but all i get is Avengers 2.5: Civil Bore.