Now that Captain America has survived World War II in Captain America: The First Avenger[Captain America: The Winter Soldier](movie:254973)and the invasion of New York in The Avengers, he is in for another wild ride. This time, though, through the streets of Washington DC and within the Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division (S.H.I.E.L.D.). Now I'll give you an assortment of major spoilers throughout this review. But first I'm going to give my opinion on the story, the characters, and how the movie fits in with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and The Avengers. So, if you haven't seen Captain America: The Winter Soldier yet, you've been warned.
The story-line of this Marvel movie takes place several years after Captain America The First Avenger and about two years after The Avengers. And Captain America (Chris Evans) is trying to fit into the modern society of today's world by working with SHIELD. But when a SHIELD colleague is under attack, Cap becomes entangled in a web of mystery. When the whole villainous plot is unveiled, Cap must enlist the help of his old ally Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and his new colleague Sam Wilson/Falcon (Anthony Mackie) as a new threat from old history comes back to haunt him in the form of the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan).
Now my overall opinion of this Avengers film is that this one is even better than The Avengers itself!!! Has a great plot, excellent heroes, dastardly villains and outstanding action. I felt that this Marvel Universe movie tied in with The Avengers really, really well (better than Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World did. But I still love those two movies.) And this is Marvel Phase 2 at it's core!! Ties in really well to set up [The Avengers: Age Of Ultron](movie:293035) and where it will turn after [Guardians of the Galaxy](movie:424073) hits theaters in August. But I think that this is the one Marvel movie that ties in with The Avengers the closest.
This Avengers film takes us back to the era of political thrillers/spy genre films (James Bond if you will) which is kind of a new thing that Marvel is doing with Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And I thought it to being done really well.
Now the characters are great in this film. Chris Evans is still great as Captain America, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow was done really well in this one and in The Avengers (Iron Man 2 was only the introduction). Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury made this movie get what it needed. Jackson's role in the Marvel films are a whole lot better than his role as Mace Windu in Star Wars Episodes I, II and III. Sebastian Stan returns as Bucky Barnes and is now the Winter Soldier. I liked how Marvel used him as a villain in this movie. New characters include Frank Grillo as Brock Rumlow/Crossbones, Emily Van Camp as Sharon Carter/Agent 13 and acting legend Robert Redford as Alexander Pierce, former head of SHIELD.
I gotta talk about Anthony Mackie as Falcon. This guy is so well done, I thought of him being the perfect sidekick for Captain America and Black Widow to combat the bad guys. His wings are second generation and they are awesome!!! I sure hope he is up for Avengers: Age of Ultron. What I think should happen is they get all the sidekicks back and put them with the original Avengers. War Machine/Iron Patriot, The Warriors Three and Lady Sif and The Falcon sound like an excellent sidekick addition to the Avengers. Wonder why Hulk didn't have a sidekick.
Now this is spoiler territory!!! So for those of you who haven't seen this film, you've been warned!!! First of all, HYDRA does return and they are wanting to get revenge on Captain America and establish a New World Order. And the whole thing with the SHIELD 'Project Insight' is all a set-up by HYDRA. They intend to use the Helicarriers to destroy the whole East Coast. And HYDRA replaces the Russians as the ones who brainwashed Bucky into being the Winter Soldier. And even though the Winter Soldier is the advertised villain, he is reduced to being a henchman. Alexander Pierce is revealed to being the true main antagonist of the movie with Crossbones and his STRIKE team as the secondary villains. Also, HYDRA was running SHIELD right under our noses the whole time.
Now the whole theory I had with Robert Redford as Alexander Pierce being the villain was kind of unexpected for some people, but I kind of knew it was going to happen. I asked myself 'Is Robert Redford going to be the big villain? Or is his character just another hero?' And my question here was answered with the revelation that he was the main antagonist. I really like what Marvel is doing with their hidden main villain (twist) scenario in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. You know with the advertised villain not being the actual bad guy. If you look at the past few Marvel films, Ben Kingsley was supposed to be the Mandarin in Iron Man 3, but Guy Pearce as Aldrich Killian was the true villain of that film.
Christopher Eccleston as Malekith in Thor: The Dark World was the main villain in the movie, so no real hidden villain there. And I have to admit, I get shocked when I see that the real villains in these movies is revealed to being somebody else. I was really surprised. But this villain is set up really well.
But when I was watching this movie, I asked myself 'Is HYDRA running this whole thing?' And the movie's whole plot point with HYDRA punched me right in the face. I love seeing the bad guys pulling the good guys strings across a movie such as this. HYDRA was right under their noses and they didn't even see it. So HYDRA brings SHIELD down by the end of the movie. And everyone goes their separate ways.
Now the first post-credit scene brings an amazing Avengers: Age of Ultron build-up as we get introduced to Scarlet Witch, her twin Quicksilver and new villain Baron Von Strucker. It gives us an idea on who to expect in the next Avengers film with Loki's scepter from The Avengers. This whole thing got me thinking if Baron Von Strucker will be the true villain of Age of Ultron. But I will think of him being a secondary villain and Ultron being the ultimate baddie in that film.Going into my overall thoughts, I give this movie 5 solid stars for being another amazing Marvel movie. It is one of my new favorite Marvel films as a whole. It surpasses The Avengers as my #1 favorite Marvel movie of all time up to date. This Marvel Universe movie is in my top 5 favorite Marvel films of all time. Here's a rundown on my Top 5 Marvel movies
5. Iron Man
4. Thor: The Dark World
3. Iron Man 3
2. The Avengers
1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
So that is my overall review of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Sorry if I spoiled it for those of you who haven't seen this movie yet. Now have you seen this movie? Is it better than The Avengers? What's your favorite Marvel movie up to date? Leave your comments below