‘Captain America’: Marvel’s most complex film to date

Bob Galuski, Editor-in-Chief

After battling Nazis across war-torn Europe, then being frozen only to thaw out 70 years later for 2012’s mega-hit “The Avengers,” the red, white and blue clad Captain America returned for his third outing in Marvel Studios’ most sophisticated film yet.

The ninth installment in the Marvel Studios franchise also serves as its biggest game-changer yet, and shakes up the other maybe too formulaic Phase

Two films like “Iron Man 3” and “Thor: The Dark World.”

Bold and daring, the film plays out with a blend between the superhero genre and something of a 1970’s espionage or political thriller. The plot works simply enough: Two years after Joss Whedon’s “The Avengers,” Captain America (Chris Evans) and Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) continue to work for Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury at the shadowy organization S.H.I.E.L.D. Toying with the idea of freedom and its price from the start, the film unfolds a dark secret within the organization once its compromised.

From there, Captain America becomes Public Enemy No. 1 and is forced to confront a seemingly faceless enemy.

In a movie that is split between espionage thriller and superhero, it is no surprise then to see the actor who made his name in the political thrillers Robert Redford show up.

Redford plays Alexander Pierce, the charismatic, suave leader of S.H.I.E.L.D. with a dark secret.

While each of the characters and actors are given ample spotlight time, the weak part comes from the titular villain, the Winter Soldier himself. Given very little screen time, the Winter Soldier—who has connections to Captain America’s past—seems to show up only to give the super soldier a more emotional connection. One could even argue that Redford’s character was the real villain.

Marvel took a big a chance with TV directors Joe and Anthony Russo (Community, Happy Endings), and the chance paid off. With keen eyes for when to play with the 70s thriller and when to pull in the superhero motif, the Russo brothers also showcase their action skills. It is a superhero movie after all, and action is necessary. From intimate hand-to-hand combats and knife fights to explosive street battles to Fury’s memorable scene in his Batmobile-type SUV, all leading up to a climactic fight in the sky, the Russo brothers engage the audience in all senses.

Filled with enough action, humor and emotion to satisfy anyone, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” takes the Marvel universe to a new level — and changes the format of superhero films.

Bob Galuski is a senior English and journalism major. He can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].