Today I watched The Russo Brothers’ Captain America: Civil War (2016)
It has been said by greater critics than I, that a hero is only as good as it’s villain, in this sense the Marvel movies have failed again and again and so here the heroes fight themselves. It wasn’t long until one of the two bit villains of these films realized that the Avengers are really argumentative and immature, and thus the true villain of this movie, Baron Zemo drives a wedge between Iron Man and Captain America by staging a terrorist attack and blaming it on the brainwashed Bucky Barnes. The UN is also angry at the Avengers because collateral damage is bad and The Avengers are not beholden to any oversight. Iron Man does a complete character 180 as he used to fight against any control whatsoever and is now supporting the initiative to bring The Avengers to heel and Captain America has become an arrogant anarchist just so this contrived plot can exist at all. So it’s whiny fascists against ignorant and arrogant anarchists and if this plot makes no sense to you, it made no sense to me either.
This movie is just a huge mess, a poorly paced slog of pure boredom as realistic character development is thrown out the window. Much like Age of Ultron it has a serious problem with wanting to be serious and intense while also fun a whimsical, causing both elements to fail because of the presence of the other. The movie really wants to be taken seriously but I found that impossible considering how silly these characters have become, especially Iron Man who is introduced to this movie airing his dirty laundry at a Ted Talk knock off and then giving away millions of dollars. Everyone in this movie is a mary sue, but especially Scarlett Witch and The Vision, whose powers are endless, they can do whatever they want so where is the tension? That they feel alienated to the world? Maybe that would work if they weren’t such characterless quip machines.
Man this movie ruins almost all of it’s characters, well maybe that’s harsh, it would need characters to ruin first. They introduce some new heroes and never have I seen more tacked on characters, Spider Man gets the only truly good scenes of the movie though so I can get over him. Black Panther on the other hand is a cliche Hollywood enlightened savage monarch, always saying shit like ‘my people believe this’ ‘in my country we do this’ which is a tiring foreign stereotype I had hoped we could move past. Black Panther also has no real character outside of being some African Fascist ubermensch, as all depictions of ‘enlightened monarchs’ tends to be, the spell checker wants me to make Ubermensch into lumberman and I guess he is that wooden. But all the other characters seem totally tacked on too, why Ant-Man is here I have no idea, why Hulk is not a central figure in the discussion on superhero control, I also have no idea.
I do not try to be a contrarian when it comes to superhero films, but it seems I am. Frankly I cannot understand why this movie gets so much praise and Batman V Superman does not. That film has an actual plot, this film is meandering bullshit that goes nowhere. Maybe I am just completely out of touch, because frankly, this movie was so tiring and troubling that I just want to take a break, if this is what the audiences want, maybe I don’t love cinema the way I thought I did. Well, yes, I do still love cinema, but I think I am done with Marvel superheroes for the time being, because after this movie there is nothing less heroic than a Marvel superhero. It depresses me greatly that mainstream audiences want such violence divorced of all morality. 1/5