Thursday, October 16, 2014

Hazy Shade of Winter

I used to be a "classic" movie purist - nothing more recent than ca. 1956. One of the things that changed my tune was the rise of the comic book movie.

My comics period ranged from the time of the 10-cent cover price (2 nickel Coke bottle deposits), through the long years of the 12-cent cover (2 Coke bottles and 2 pennies), through the psychedelic 70s of Adam Warlock, Conan, and Doctor Strange. I guess what I'm saying is, I was not a fan during Captain America's biggest era, although I was a big Nick Fury fan. At least, I never associated Cap with paranoia and government subversion.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014) is all about paranoia. While Cap (Chris Evans) is trying to come to terms with modern America, Nick Fury comes under suspicion and dies after an attack. Soon, even Captain America is an outlaw on the run. He is up against Hydra, the Winter Soldier and Batroc the Leaper, but he has friend - not just Black Widow, but (very cool) the Falcon (Anthony Mackie).

The Winter Soldier is the main villain, a kind of negative Captain America. His secret identity is probably not going to be a surprise to many, and no, it isn't John Kerry. But I was more into the seriously underused Batroc, one of my favorite Kirby villains. I don't know why, I guess I have a weakness for La Savate - "The French they are a funny race, they fight with their feet."

I'd have to say this was a great entry into the Marvel Movie Universe. I'd rank it up there with the best of the X-Men movies. Still, I just don't have the same connection to Cap as I do to some other heroes. With all its faults, I still like the FF movies more - although I'll admit, Chris Evans is a better Steve Rogers than Johnny Storm.

No comments: