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Captain America: The First Avenger

A 2011 film Based on the Marvel Comics Character

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A surprisingly fun Marvel superhero action movie.

  • Jul 28, 2011
*** out of ****

Well, what a pleasant surprise. It's been a long, mediocre summer of good-to-sadly-decent superhero flicks. There have been many of them; although not all of them have been worthwhile. Meanwhile, "Captain America: The First Avenger" is some sort of minor miracle. It's one of the most cliché-laden films I've seen all year, but the beauty of that fact is that it embraces these qualities; and never lets them become part of the movie's flaws.

I like superhero movies. For anyone who has a childhood, they were once a big part of all of us (the superheroes, not the movies). So now that these big-budget, Hollywood movies are being made about our favorite fictional justice-servers, some people are left pissed; some even impressed. I liked "Captain America" because it does more than the previous films involving the character have. It doesn't give him depth or a dark side, but it sticks to formula, and does what it does very well. It's a well-done film, and that's something that you can't deny. Joe Johnston, I now respect you...once again.

In 1940's America, a New York-native young man named Steve Rogers (Chris Evan) is trying ever-so-desperately to become a soldier for the United States Army, like his friend. And he has tried every time; every attempt failing due to the pathetic state of his physical form. But he has determination, and one-day, while out with his brother on a double-date, he meets the German Scientist Erskine (Stanley Tucci). This is the man that gives Steve a chance at his dream. He allows him to be recruited, and then Steve goes on to train. He's still as weak as ever, but Erskine figures this will be more of an advantage than anything else.

Perhaps this is because he's always wanted to test experimental serums on a man, and a weakling will do just fine. After a successful experiment gone essentially all-right, Steve is now possessing superhuman strength. And he's no longer skinny as hell. Hooray!

Now that he's the strongest soldier America has got, Steve can finally live his dream, go out, and kill some Nazis. He has become...Captain America, or at least that's what the public dubs him as. But wait; there's not only THE Nazis. There's also Hitler's "scientific division", known as HYRDA, and it is led by Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving), who is very, very scientific indeed. In fact, he's so scientific, that he experiments on himself to the point where he can now have (literally) a red head.

Lots of gunfights, things that explode. You know the drill when it comes to action movies, and "Captain America" doesn't even attempt to CHANGE that drill, but that's precisely what I like so much about it. The film is a straight-forward action picture. It's not too loud, it's not too messy, it's not too violent. It's silly, but that's how a lot of action movies should be. It works with its style, its period, and its pacing.

The only real problem I have with this movie, aside from the fact that it's nothing more than JUST a good action flick, is that the character of Captain America lacks depth. He is well-portrayed by Chris Evans (who, by the way, has been getting some PRETTY good roles recently), but the writing of the actual character, of Cpt. America, is just a tad undeveloped. The same problem goes for most of the characters, but it doesn't necessarily make the film any less fun to watch. This is good, because if any fun had been drained from the experience, I would have walked out of the theater, and I would have kept on walking for hours.

The director, Joe Johnston, has redeemed himself. He directed last year's "The Wolfman"; a remake of a classic Universal monster movie. Here, he's exercised some good filmmaking techniques, he drenches his film in its 1940's period, and out of it, I think he's made a pretty good movie. But...think what you want, and must. If you don't like Superhero movies, or action films, then "Captain America" will have no appeal whatsoever. However, if you go into it with an open mind, as well as one that's not willing to think about much plot-wise or intellectually, then I think you'll be fine. This is superb entertainment; mindless, but well-crafted and well-intentioned. Fans of the Captain will not be disappointed.

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July 28, 2011
I am in total agreement with your review....lacks depth and even intricacies in plotting, but overall a pretty fun movie!!
More Captain America: The First Ave... reviews
review by . July 23, 2011
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“Captain America” has been one Marvel character that has been so overlooked, underused and definitely misused. I think this is already the 5th comic book adaptation this year and the 3rd one released that featured a major Marvel comic character. “Captain America The First Avenger” has been released with little to no major promos and it feels like a movie that follows a formula that has been used by many other comic book movies so many times before. To appreciate Joe Johnston’s …
review by . December 11, 2011
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In a "alternate" universe (a la Inglorious Basterds) where Nazis had ray guns, planes that look like stealth bombers and lab equipment that looks modern day, we have another tale of World War II. Steve Rogers (Chris Evans with amazing special effects that have him looking shorter and pencil thin) keeps getting rejected by the Army for health reasons. He is not dissuaded and just keeps enlisting in other stations.    He appears ultra-patriotic and doesn't care if bullies beat …
review by . August 29, 2011
Shields Up!
Captain America:  The First Avenger is a solid action yarn that tries, at least in my opinion, to do too many things at once.      The plot of the film revolves around Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), a scrawny wannabe soldier who gets turned away time after time when he attempts to enlist in the US Army to fight for the Allies in World War II.  His "never give up" attitude attracts the attention of Dr. Abraham Erskine (Stanley Tucci), a German scientist …
review by . July 23, 2011
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review by . July 21, 2011
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      'Captain America, The First Avenger', directed by Joe Johnston (Wolfman) is the latest superhero to come out of the 'Marvel' stable.      The year is 1941...Hitler and his merry band of Nazis are storming through Europe. One particular Nazi, Johann Schmidt aka Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) is in Norway searching for an ancient artifact known as Odin's Tesseract.      This artifact is very, very powerful. We know this, …
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CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER   Written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely   Directed by Joe Johnston   Starring Chris Evans, Hayley Atwell, Tommy Lee Jones and Hugo Weaving       Peggy Carter: You can’t give me orders!   Captain America: The hell I can’t! I’m a captain.       I was weary of CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER before watching it but still optimistic. After all, …
review by . July 23, 2011
With the release of Captain America: The First Avenger now out, the comicbook summer of 2011 now comes to a close.  We had our ups with X Men First Class and our downs or at the very least dissapointments with Green Lantern but when the Golden Age hero Captain America now hit the big screen, the summer was going out on a high note.      The movie takes place with Captain America's origin, during WWII with Steve Rogers, a stringbean of a man who cannot get enlisted into …
review by . August 23, 2011
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review by . July 23, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         Captain America: The First Avenger is a fun slice of pop culture nostalgia – a 3D film that crosses the gee-whiz imagery of a yesteryear pulp magazine with the rip-roaring action and adventure of a Saturday afternoon serial. Adapted from the Marvel comic book, it evokes an imaginary, almost innocent world of fantastic technologies, sinister domination plots, and gung-ho characters, all of whom believe that good old American moxie can vanquish …
Quick Tip by . July 20, 2011
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After the made-for-TV Captain America movie and series starring Reb Brown and the lesser known made for video movie starring Matt Salinger, it is somewhat refreshing to see the living legend of world war II featured in his first credible, big-budgeted movie feature.      Judging from the trailer and photos, I would say that this is Steve Rogers as an “Ultimate Marvel Universe” version from the early 2000‘s. A much darker, meaner and tougher Cap, but I have mixed …
About the reviewer
Ryan J. Marshall ()
Ranked #11
It's very likely that the only kind of reviews I'll ever post here are movie reviews. I'm very passionate about film; and at this point, it pretty much controls my life. Film gives us a purpose; … more
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Captain America: The First Avenger is a 2011 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character Captain America. It is the fifth installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film was directed by Joe Johnston, written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and stars Chris Evans, Tommy Lee Jones, Hugo Weaving, Hayley Atwell, Sebastian Stan, Dominic Cooper, Neal McDonough, Derek Luke, and Stanley Tucci. The film tells the story of Steve Rogers, a sickly man from Brooklyn who is transformed into super soldier Captain America to help the war effort. However, Captain America must stop Red Skull, Adolf Hitler's ruthless head of weaponry and leader of a terrorist organization, who intends to use a mysterious tesseract energy-source for world domination.
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Director: Joe Johnston
Genre: Action, Adventure, Animation, Drama, Thriller, War
Release Date: July 22, 2011
Runtime: 124 minutes
Studio: Marvel Studios, Paramount Pictures
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