It’s a well crafted mix of political intrigue and Marvel’s own signature humour putting it right up there with some of the studio’s best work.
The sequel sees the walking talking stars and stripes uncover a threat close to home as all is not what is seems within S.H.I.E.L.D. Chuck in formidable, yet strangely familiar, assassin, The Winter Solider and it makes for a compelling and hugely enjoyable episode.
The film’s strength is simple – its plays to its characters values and builds its story around him.
Compared to the rest of the Avengers, Captain America is just a tad straight-laced.
Not as zany or gadget savvy as Tony Stark and lacking the more fantastical elements of Thor (not to mention the brotherly angst) on paper he can seem a bit plain. But what the character does have is an unbendable sense of justice and integrity.
It’s these qualities that come to the fore, clashing well with contemporary themes of surveillance, pre-emptive military action and drone warfare that run through the story.
When S.H.E.I.L.D’s new tactics are called into question Cap must pin his colours to the mast. “This isn’t freedom, it’s fear.” He protests to boss Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson)
Evans does well to ground a hero unsure of himself while trying to stem the tide as the rules of the game he thinks he knows change around him.
Ideas of liberty and patriotism are established and carried through, though that’s not to say it relies solely on analogies and long winded speeches – plenty of blocks do get busted.
Some fantastic set pieces anchor the movie with a Bond-esque finale the standout.
With perhaps their most ambitious chapter coming later this year in Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel have sent a confident message to the rest of the Blockbuster table, producing an engaging movie which pushes the Superhero genre while retains its popcorn sensibilities.
Review By Tom Parry