I can start this review off by saying that I don’t actually have that much to say about “Captain America: Civil War”, other than . . . it’s pretty much perfect.
First of all, this film is an excellent blend of the ambitious, superhero smackdown spectacle-ness of “Avengers: Assemble” along with the intelligent, mature, down-to-earth thriller elements of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”; in this film, we are treated to many extraordinary Avengers moments as well as a solid continuation of Captain America’s storyline. Before I saw it, I was convinced that “Civil War” would ignore the fact that this is a Captain America film and simply focus on being more of an Avengers film. However, I’m glad that this was not the case and that Cap’s development remained central to the story.
As hinted at before, this film features a pivotal Avengers/Avengers fight scene and it certainly is the highlight of the movie (a bit hypocritical, I know since I’ve made it clear that I didn’t want this film to be too Avengers-y!) With the likes of Spider-Man and Black Panther going up against Ant-Man and Falcon et al, this sequence is hugely enjoyable and spectacular; eventually, you may forget who’s on what side, but when you’re having so much fun watching, you don’t care one bit!
As for the new additions to the MCU, Chadwick Boseman is excellent as Black Panther; it only took me a few seconds to be fully in awe of his character and he certainly makes quite a significant impact to the story. And then there’s Tom Holland as Spider-Man, who many have already proclaimed to be the star of the show and possibly the greatest Spider-Man yet. They are definitely not wrong there. Indeed, he is perfect. Admittedly, I wasn’t fully convinced at first but eventually, he won me over, playing the role with considerable zeal and vigour. Now I am eagerly anticipating “Spider-Man: Homecoming”.
On a similar note, it is impressive that even though there is a rather generous character roster, everyone gets their moment to shine; no one feels underdeveloped and no parts are phoned in. Also, even though this is the longest MCU film so far, it certainly doesn’t feel that way and I was perfectly comfortable sitting through the whole film, losing myself in the story and never once thinking about how long was left.
As with all Marvel films, there is plenty of humour and “Civil War” certainly makes us smile a lot. The film also gets serious a lot of the time, too and many scenes, including where we see the devastation caused by Avenger actions from previous films and especially the ending, are considerably tense and shocking. Obviously, I don’t want to give anything away, but something does happen at the end, which is brutal indeed and these final scenes don’t shy away from being harsh and uncompromising.
Coming up with negative points is a very hard task indeed; there are tiny things I could mention but I would be nit-picking and reaching quite severely! The only thing I will say is that Marisa Tomei didn’t seem quite right as Aunt May. And perhaps the film takes a little while to get fully “into gear”. That’s all, your honour.
Hmm, I guess that I had more to say than I first thought…
In conclusion, this film delivers the strong, confident, grounded storytelling of “Winter Soldier” alongside the awe-inspiring superhero spectacle of “Avengers”; it is fun, exciting and damn near perfect.