Battle of the reviews: Two writers look at ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’

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The latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” follows Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johanssen) working for Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division (S.H.I.E.L.D.) when the organization is attacked by a mysterious threat.

The movie will have had the greatest impact on Marvel’s cinematic universe with events happening that will surely send a rippling effect throughout future installments.

One part political thriller, one part character journey and one part action film, “The Winter Soldier” is wonderfully paced and shows the best of what comic book movies have to offer in this day and age.

Directors Anthony and Joe Russo (best known for their work on Community) have delivered a story filled with spies, car chases, intense hand to hand combat, aerial dogfights and then some. All of these set pieces and action combined with a great script makes this movie one of Marvel’s best yet.

And what makes this one of their best is how relevant they made it to our society today. “The Winter Soldier” discusses an interesting issue – the cost and definition of what freedom truly is.

Captain America, nicknamed “Cap,” a freedom fighter out of his time, now lives in present day and works for an agency that utilizes espionage to prevent attacks before they even happen.

We’re introduced to several new characters; Falcon (Anthony Mackie) who mainly serves as Cap’s sidekick, and his true partner in the film, Black Widow.

Evans and Johanssen have great chemistry, and as we all know, Black Widow is quite the fighter, complete with great comedic moments and more back-story that suggests a moral conflict that she is left with toward the end of the film.

Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) is still as badass as ever and Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford) really helps to set up the film as the political thriller it really is.

As for the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), he is Marvel Studios’ most terrifying villain to date, wielding assault rifles, grenade launchers and knives; he gives Cap a run for his money. His relentless and unstoppable persona will cause movie goers to constantly wonder how the heroes will get out of this one alive.

With a great combination of amazing characters, high octane action, plot twists, thriller elements, political commentary, humor, espionage and much more, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” delivers a pulse-pounding experience that leaves viewers with the right image of what Captain America is all about.

Sticking to his guns and his morality gives Evans a unique strength as a Marvel hero in this film, of which I’m giving a 9 out of 10.


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