Movie Review: Captain America: The First Avenger


I attended a screening of Captain America: The First Avenger on Wednesday. At the screening, the USO was on hand and half the theater was filled with active duty military and their families. Dunkin' Donuts, as a sponsor of Captain America, was also on hand to pass out cards about a great promotion. For every "like" they receive on Facebook from now until July 31, 2011, they will donate $1 to the USO. So go like Dunkin' Donuts on Facebook.

For my readers that haven't read the comic books or heard of Captain America prior to this recent movie, it was created by Marvel comics during World War II and served as a beacon of hope for many Americans. Steve Rogers (Captain America) is a young, weak American that wishes to serve his country even though he is deemed unfit by the army. His determination to enlist leads him by chance to Dr. Erskine who, with government support, is experimenting on creating a super soldier. Rogers volunteers and thus, Captain America is born.

Captain America: The First Avenger begins with a scene in the modern day before transporting us back to the 1940s. When the scene first zoomed out during the 1940s, I really felt emerged in the history. I was really impressed with the authenticity of the sets and costumes because they even recreated the World's Fair in Queens. The problem is they recreated the 1964 World's Fair but the scene would have taken place during the 1939 World's Fair. It was pointed out to me that the Unisphere was featured in Iron Man and since both heroes are from the Marvel comic world it might have been done on purpose for continuity within the movie world.

I was really impressed with how the production crew turned Chris Evans into a scrawny looking guy for the pre-transformation scenes. I honestly thought they found a different actor with a similar face and had to check IMDB when I returned home before typing this review. It seems that in editing, the CGI team removed Chris Evan’s muscles and removed a few inches from his height in every scene. The CGI team did a really good job on those scenes.

I really enjoyed the relationships seen during this movie and the complexity of them all. Steve (Captain America) formed some great relationships with Bucky (his childhood friend), Peggy (a British agent stationed in America), Dr. Erskine (the scientist responsible for the experiment), and other characters throughout the film. These relationships really helped add humanity to the superhero and helped to guide his actions throughout the film.

While I was impressed by the film's quality I was not impressed with the film's story line. When I think comic book/action hero movies I think about action. While the action scenes in Captain America were action packed, they were few and far between. The movie started out slow and felt like it was dragging on for a while. The movie was written with the perspective that no one in the audience knows the character and therefore goes through over-explaining everything in the backstory. While this is helpful to anyone that doesn't know his history, it is part of the reason why the film started so slow. The writers were not only trying to show Captain America, but the time period as a whole.

Captain America: The First Avenger is titled this way because it is leading to the upcoming 2012 film which will unite most of the Marvel superheroes. The first trailer for The Avengers was shown at Comic-Con and the rumor is that there will be a short teaser after the credits of Captain America. I stayed until the lights came on but did not see this rumored scene. However, this might be due to the fact that it was a pre-screening and they might only show the teaser during the actual release.

My personal opinion of this film is that I would wait until I could see it at a discount. I recommend seeing the movie but I don't think it's worth the full ticket price. Wait until a matinee or use one of the discount passes we've found on social shopping sites even if you have to wait the ten days after release. I would also recommend against seeing the film in 3D because it wasn't anything special. There were a few scenes where you would expect the amazing 3D but it just wasn't really impressive.

Captain America: The First Avenger will be released nation wide on Friday, July 22, 2011. If you are going to a Regal (or affiliate) theater, don’t forget to request your text message for a free popcorn from Yahoo! Movies on Facebook before you go.

Movie Rating for Captain America: The First Avenger

The passes for this pre-screening were won through 43Kix. Follow their Facebook page to attend free screenings near you. Check out my information post for more information about free movie screenings.


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