Genre : Action,Adventure,SF
Country : USA
Chris Evans : Steve Rogers/Captain America
Hugo Weaving : Red Skull
Tommy Lee Jones : Colonel Chester Phillips
Director : Joe Johnston
It is 1942, America has entered World War II, and sickly but determined Steve Rogers is frustrated at being rejected yet again for military service. Everything changes when Dr. Erskine recruits him for the secret Project Rebirth. Proving his extraordinary courage, wits and conscience, Rogers undergoes the experiment and his weak body is suddenly enhanced into the maximum human potential.
Since 2000 we are literally flooded with film versions of Marvel heroes. Just a small list: X-Men, Blade, Spider Man, Daredevil, The Hulk, The Punisher, Elektra, Fantastic Four, Ghost Rider, Iron Man, Thor, Wolverine, The Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy … Pretty impressive. And this year there’s the release of “Captain America: Winter Soldier” of which I read so many good things everywhere. In preparation for this, I had to watch the first film from “Captain America” so I’ll be proper prepared.
This movie takes place in 1942. Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) wants to join the army at all costs, to participate in defeating the Nazi regime in Europe. He is far too petite and has a whole catalogue of illnesses. He is rejected while his good friend James “Bucky” Barnes (Sebastian Stan) is approved and about to leave to the front. At an exhibition Rogers attracts the attention of a certain Professor Erskine (Stanley Tucci) who makes him an offer: joining the secret project “Rebirth” where he’ll receive injections and radiations with “Vita”-rays which will stabilize and activate the injected chemicals. His physical appearance changes quite dramatically. That thin, weak little boy changes into a healthy and muscular super soldier. Erskine has chosen him because he’s sure that a weak person will continue to respect this gift and still will show compassion. “Because the strong man who has known power all his life, May lose respect for That power, but a weak man knows the value of strength, and knows … compassion.” But Steve Rogers is the only super soldier that mankind will know because professor Erskine is assassinated and thus the experiment can no longer be repeated.
The first half hour was funny and entertaining. The atmosphere of the 40’s was beautiful integrated. A little bit sallow and with that 40’s flair achieved by the costumes and decor. It really had that feeling of a pre-war film. The illusion they created seeing Chris Evans transforming from a toddler to an impressive person is wonderfully realized. Tommy Lee Jones (as the drill sergeant) and Tucci take care of some funny moments. Even the part where Captain America is used as a living billboard to attract new cannon fodder for the ongoing war, was reasonably entertaining. And then everything starts to look a bit ordinary and Captain America becomes a parody of itself. The transformation of a schmuck into an invincible someone is obviously something the audience loves to see, but the bland and cartoonish second part puts a damper on that grandiose beginning.
The performances on the other hand are of an acceptable level. Chris Evans is superb as Captain America. The transformation of an insignificant schmuck into a savior and example of braveness for the American people, is simply sublime. Unfortunately his character eventually evolves into a third-rate action figure with an uninspired storyline. Tommy Lee Jones was again irresistible in a role that suits him. A humorless, moody loudmouth with a strong opinion and someone who says his unvarnished opinion. Hugo Weaving was perfect for the role as the dictatorial Nazi Schmidt and archenemy Red Skull. His grim facial features and demagogic madness made me forget to get iritated by his English with an exaggerated German accent.
PS. However, I can tell you that the sequel is fantastic …
Links : IMDB