Summer starts earlier, and earlier every year. Enter “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” the most anticipated summer popcorn flick of 2014 (at least for me). Maybe that’s because I loved “Captain America: The First Avenger”(‘11), -- a whimsical comic book action-flick where good and evil are clearly defined.
However, “The Winter Soldier” is darker than “The First Avenger,” and morality becomes grayer. Like the “Dark Knight Rises”(‘12), “The Winter Soldier” uses the comic book as a motif, but it’s really a poignant commentary on a post 911 world that drives the film.
Relax Marvel fans, Steve Rogers is still true-blue and will gladly throw himself on a live grenade for a buddy. And there are plenty of explosions and car wrecks to keep a personal injury lawyer litigating for decades. You’re going to get your money’s worth.
So fasten your lap strap. The film takes off with Captain America (Chris Evans) leading an elite S.H.I.E.L.D. tactical team against pirates who have hijacked a navel ship. Of course Cap saves the day, but he discovers that his partner on the mission, slippery Black Widow, agent Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) is on a secret mission from S.H.I.E.L.D.’s Director Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). Romanoff was sent to recover data from an NSA-like surveillance program on steroids from the ship’s computers. Rogers begins to question S.H.I.E.L.D.’s hidden agenda – using hostages as an excuse to assault a spy ship and recover the data.
Not to give too much away, but expect plot twists, the return of old foes and a new villain – the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), a metal-armed assassin with sad soulful eyes. He doesn’t talk much, but he makes up for his silence by causing a lot of havoc. The highlight of the film is the introduction of Falcon (Anthony Mackie), an Iraqi war veteran who Roger’s turns to for help after learning that S.H.I.E.L.D. has been compromised. Falcon teams up with Cap and Romanoff to battle the Winter Soldier, and save the planet from tyrannical rule.
“The Winter Soldier” is a taut, suspenseful thriller – a joyous E-Ticket Ride. It probably goes without saying, but sit through the five minutes of credits or you’ll miss the teasers for “Avengers: Age of Ultron” next summer. In fact, just to be sure, stay in your seat until they turn the houselights on and the ushers throw you out.
Like Blackflix.com On Facebook
Follow Blackflix.com On Twitter