Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a good, even a great, action movie. Steve Rogers, played by Chris Evans, is a believable boy scout and all-American hero. The threat is real. The world’s most powerful law enforcement agency, SHIELD will face its greatest enemy. At the same time, Cap has to face an enemy custom-built to be his own personal nightmare.
James Buchanan Barnes aka “Bucky” is the Winter Soldier from the title. A superhuman assassin with a bionic arm, mentally programmed to carry out the will of its masters. It’s SHIELD against Hydra in this movie, except that this time Hydra has been biding their time burrowing from within SHIELD’s ranks all the way to the top. Director Nick Fury is in command but eventually he will get betrayed by the people he trusts. You can’t blame him not to trust anyone.
Along for the ride are Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow, played by Scarlett Johansson and Sam Wilson aka Falcon, played by Anthony Mackie. The Widow is still very much the self-sufficient lethal agent that we expect her to be, while Sam does become an actual high-flying threat and a welcome addition to the movie. They both will be invaluable to help Cap once an apparent successful attempt is made on Colonel Fury’s life. They also shine on their own.
I was a little bit biased to see this movie mainly because of the Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD TV series. I already knew that Hydra was going to be the big invisible baddie. In a similar fashion than I figured out who was the mastermind on that show, you can figure out who is the main Hydra head in this film. It’s still a good movie to watch, even if it’s predictable all the way up to the finale. You also get the usual touches of humor, although this is not directed by Joss Whedon but by Anthony and Joe Russo. As usual, there are two scenes in the credits, one in the middle that has some foreshadowing for X-Men: Days of Future Past and a very short one at the end. There are a lot of Marvel’s usual easter eggs spread on the film, including a nod to Samuel Jackson’s character on Pulp Fiction.
Recommended with popcorn. You’ll want to see it if you’re following the Marvel cinematic universe, but also if you just want a good action film which it is. More than that, it isn’t an Oscar contender nor does it pretend to be.
That will do for now.