Continuing my journey on my Marvel movie marathon quest! The 5th film up in the Marvel movie marathon: Captain America.
Just to catch you up on what I’m doing with this Marvel movie marathon in case you missed my first post about Iron Man:
I am in the process of watching every MCU film from start to finish in release order, and of course sharing my thoughts. And bonus for my blog readers – since I’m watching all of these films with my new Marvel correspondent (he doesn’t know he has this title yet), you actually get two different perspectives on the movies. Tony (not Stark) has seen all of the films multiples times and knows a lot of the behind the scenes info and comic book origins. I, up until this point, have been a casual Marvel fan and have seen most of the movies once, though some of the early ones not at all.
Even though we actually watched all of Phase One in one weekend (phew!), I’m spacing out my blog posts a bit, which means today we are on to film #5:
“It is 1941 and the world is in the throes of war. Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) wants to do his part and join America’s armed forces, but the military rejects him because of his small stature. Finally, Steve gets his chance when he is accepted into an experimental program that turns him into a supersoldier called Captain America. Joining forces with Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell), Captain America leads the fight against the Nazi-backed HYDRA organization.”
Becky’s knowledge prior to watching: I think I’d seen this movie twice before, though it’s been awhile since I last watched it so I forgot a lot. But Captain America is one of my favorite Marvel characters so I always enjoy his movies and I knew I liked this one.
The Hero: Steve Rogers
Captain America is definitely one of my favorite superheroes, and certainly my favorite out of the original Avengers. I feel like Steve Rogers is what they set out for him to be: he’s compassionate, selfless, hardworking. Chris Evans is perfect in this role because I think he really pulls it off in a way where Steve doesn’t come off as too much of a goody two-shoes or too perfect. He feels real, and he’s also flawed. It’s also interesting to view him as a foil to Iron Man. Despite the fact that they ultimately (more or less) end up on the same team, But where Tony Stark is the playboy coming from money, Steve Rogers is the awakard kid from humble beginnings. Tony is sarcastic, Steve is genuine. Tony is all ego, Steve has humility.
The villain: Red Skull
In my opinion the villain is the weakest part of this film. Red Skull has a cool name, but once again we get the somewhat repetitive Marvel villain idea here. These early movies definitely had a trend of their villains being “the same as the hero but the evil version!” That’s still the case here – Red Skull has taken the super soldier serum as well, but he didn’t fare as well as Steve and he ultimately joins Hydra and goes the villain route. It’s fine but nothing particularly special.
The romance: Peggy Carter
I love Agent Carter as a character and I really like the relationship she has with Steve. They have such good chemistry together. Despite the fact that he’s very scrawny and awkward when they first meet, she’s still willing to talk to him and interact with him. I think that makes her realize there’s actually a funny, smart person underneath the exterior, and the fact that she sees that before he becomes a super soldier says a lot.
I have seen some people complain about the Steve/Peggy romance throughout the entire Marvel series because it’s really played up as a “true love” sort of thing even after 70 years. And people say “but they only kissed one time!” I think, though, that just shows how much deeper their relationship is. It’s about more than just that physical moment, it’s everything they’ve been through together and their bond and friendship. Steve’s call to Peggy at the end of the movie is one of the most heartbreaking moments in all of the MCU and I will never not cry while watching that part.
The Setting: 1940s
I may be drawn to this film more than others in some ways because I absolutely love the setting. I’m very into the 1940s aesthetic and period, so I love all of the costumes, the set, the music, and even the cinematography. I’m not one to notice cinematagraphy too much, but it’s definitely used here to emphasize the retro feel, with the colors all a bit muted and it really works.
While the story is somewhat of a typical superhero origin story, I think overall it does it well and it’s at least a little different due to the time period. Perhaps one slight issue I might have is that it doesn’t hit on more of the negatives of war – we see that later on (timeline-wise) with Tony Stark grappling with war, but for Steve it’s straightfroward. You fight for your country because that’s what you’re expected to do. But that’s how things were in the 1940s – this issue was pretty black and white. I think it does make for an interesting juxtaposition later on when Steve has to experience modern day war. You can see how different his approach can be at that point.
One of the reasons why I prefer this movie over some of the others is because it feels more character driven in many ways. I feel more connected to the people in the story – not just Steve but Peggy, Bucky, and even the death of the scientist towards the beginning is an emotional moment. I feel like I have the opportunity to interact with and get to know the characters more in this movie, and so even if the plot isn’t the most unique I find it a very enjoyable journey thanks to the people who are involved with it.
Tony (not Stark) says:
“This is a good addition to the MCU, and all of the actors here are very strong which helps to make it work. In some ways it feels a little more down-to-earth than other Marvel movies (other than the whole “Nazis with lasers” part). I wish they would have cut some of the dancing and shows that Captain America had to do and showed more of of the war and fighting parts. Especially the guys he rescued to come fight hydra – it would have been nice to see more of them and get to know them a bit better.”
10 random thoughts I had while watching Captain America:
- I don’t know what they did to try and make Chris Evans look scrawny but it’s kinda freaky…
- I feel like there aren’t too many people who are “good” enough to take the super soldier serum.
- Dr. Erskine was a pretty cool character… it’s a shame he has to die.
- I love the music and costumes in this so much.
- Agent Carter and Steve are wonderful together.
- For some reason I thought Bucky did more in this movie.
- I think I like Howard Stark more than Tony Stark.
- Kinda love that Peggy gets pissed when the other woman kisses Steve, but she just fires a few angry bullets and they move on 😉
- I don’t think I will ever be able to watch the end of this movie without tears.
- Okay but I think I would have SO MANY questions if I was in Steve’s situation!
Becky: 8 out of 10
Tony: 7 out of 10
What do you think of my Marvel Movie Marathon Captain America thoughts?