I have such an issue writing about movies sometimes, because I don’t know what would qualify as a spoiler and what would not. So I err on the side of “there was a movie and it was good” rather than “omg, Thor is Kaiser Sose…oops!”
This movie is no exception. So instead of your typical “here’s the storyline” movie review, I am going to give you the top 10 things I loved about this movie.
TEN THINGS I LOVE ABOUT
YOU CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR
- Apparently, I am the only person in the greater Seattle area that had no idea that Ant Man and Spiderman make appearances in the movie. So when these characters appeared on the screen, I may or may not have been the person who yelled “REALLY???” during the movie. Wolfgang (my 16 year old son) was pretty horrified. (Note: I am a big Marvel fan. Huge. But I do not pay much attention to things, so this was a great surprise.)
TBH, this scene made me scream out loud because I’m a HUGE fan of the little guy.
- The Black Panther is introduced. I won’t go into the backstory, because it’s built within the movie and again, Kaiser Sose, but he comes in with his own party and doesn’t really take a #TeamCap or #TeamIronMan side at first. He’s got his own gig and his own amazing costume, designed to meld panther-like vibes with African aspects in the embellishments. He stalks his prey in super minimalist shoes, and attacks with a style reminiscent of Capoeira and Kung Fu. SUPER stoked to hear he’s got his own flick coming out in 2018.
- The Vision makes a bigger appearance in this movie. I love Paul Bettany (holler to his portrayal of Chaucer in the buff in First Knight) and seeing Jarvis come to life as the Vision in a more substantial way in Civil War is pretty much the best. I read that when they couldn’t use a wire rig to simulate the hover/flying thing that the Vision does, they got Bettany onto an AirBoard: one of those hoverboards that everyone has been falling off of lately. Apparently, it only took a few minutes for him to use the hoverboard properly, and definitely gave that floating feel to his role as the Vision.
- Ok, so Thor isn’t in this movie. No, really. I waited the whole movie for him to show up and smash a cup and yell “ANOTHER” but nope. And I am not just trying to trick you because if Thor was in the movie, I would be yelling about it because y’all know I love me some Thor. They do make a singular, but very clear reference to him and Bruce Banner (aka: The Hulk) early in the movie to tie up that loose end.
- Chris Evans’ muscles make a couple of lovely appearances in this movie. There was a scene (see above) with a helicopter and some biceps and I audibly gasped and the guy sitting behind me just lost it laughing. Seriously, that’s some amazing training and nutrition coming together in a massive gun show. It’s impressive in IMAX 3D.
- Speaking of IMAX 3D, if you can swing it, you need to experience this movie in a legit IMAX theatre. We had to travel to the Seattle Pacific Science Center to do this, but it was FABULOUS. I don’t know if they have speakers in the seats, but you could feel the explosions in your chest and at one point, Captain America’s hair was out of place and I felt a visceral need to reach out and smooth it down. The ash in Scarlet Witch’s hair after a bomb goes off is almost palpable. The otherworldly tone and sheen of the Vision’s skin makes you want to see if it feels like vinyl pants or if it’s cold to the touch. It’s almost like being IN the movie.
- The one-liners in this movie are just great. From Falcon calling Ant Man “Tic Tac” to Black Widow calling Tony Stark “uncharacteristically non-hyperverbal”, if you’re not laughing, you’re not paying attention.
- The cinematics in this movie are just STUNNING. Have I said that already? Maybe. There’s a scene in a church with stained glass windows and the light shining through them practically makes you look down to see if the colored light is shining on you. The scenery is beautiful, CGI or real, and I’ve already mentioned how the battle scenes hit you on a visceral level.
- The upgrades for everyone’s gear. Falcon’s wings are more streamlined and a little more high tech (with a couple of red streaks!), suiting him as he joins the Avengers squad or real. Scarlet Witch also gains some full-time status with the A squad and gets some new duds, with a sweet leather duster that moves as she does. Hawkeye comes back with a bow fit for his southpaw grip, lighter-weighted bow and a collapsible baton for hand to hand combat. Everybody looks snazzy!
- I can’t believe I got all the way to 10 without mentioning the main storyline. I love Bucky. I want to make a Winter Soldier costume if we ever go to a conference…though I might see if I can juryrig one for a RunDisney run. This movie sort of tears me apart. Pitting Iron Man against Captain America leaves you with no villain to root against and kind of screws with you. Without an antagonist and with the protagonists battling each other, how is one supposed to feel?
It’s a fantastic movie. Jaw-rattling action paired with side-splitting humor and a heart-wrenching plot, this is one Marvel fans will love and non-Marvel fans will want to check out.
One last note: STAY ALL THE WAY UNTIL THE CREDITS ARE TOTALLY OVER. Trust me. Stay for the shawarma. If you like Marvel at all, you’ll be happy you did.
Let me know how you liked Civil War! Who was your favorite character?
We had the pleasure of attending a media screening a few days in advance of the movie release, and got to see the movie on IMAX 3D at the Pacific Science Center in Seattle. We were not otherwise compensated (even bought our own popcorn) and all opinions are mine. Photos are courtesy of the Walt Disney Corporation and should not be otherwise distributed.