Jacqueline Monahan's Movie Reviews

Captain America: The Winter Soldier | Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Redford, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie | Review

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3sm The Flick Chicks movie rating for this film is MEDIOCRE Jacqueline Monahan

Jacqueline  Monahan

Las Vegas Round The Clock
Jacqueline Monahan is an educator for the GEAR UP program at UNLV.
She is also an entertainment reporter for Lasvegasroundtheclock.com
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3lg The Flick Chicks movie rating for this film is MEDIOCRE

Captain America:  The Winter Soldier | Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Redford, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie | Review

Two years after The Avengers descended upon New York, super-soldier Steve Rogers, aka Captain America (Chris Evans) adjusts to modern life in the 21st century by maintaining his enhanced physical shape, retaining his affinity for 1940’s music, and getting sucked into intrigue after S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury is ambushed and injured to the point of extinction – a funny choice of words, I know, but accurate.  Fury advises Rogers to “Trust no one,” and gives him details about Project Insight, a plot to identify and eliminate opponents of an encroaching new world order.

Teaming up with fellow S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Natasha Romanoff, aka, Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) Rogers finds that his agency’s been compromised and that Hydra (a subversive organization dedicated to global domination) is behind a covert, Washington D.C.-based plot to…what else? Dominate the globe, of course.  This is the Marvel Universe, where aficionados not only accept that kind of thing, they expect it.

Senior S.H.I.E.L.D. bigwig Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford) is a member of the World Security Council, a smooth operator with ulterior motives and lots of ideas that come out in oodles of exposition that rival the explosions in the film.

The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) is a Hydra creation, a modified being like Steve Rogers, but brainwashed into a deadly assassin.  WS possesses a surprise identity.  So far it seems to be S.H.I.E.L.D. vs. HYDRA.  If only it were that simple.  Think betrayal, infestation, lies.  That’s all I’m saying.

Moving right along, Rogers befriends ex-paratrooper (now PTSD counselor) Sam Wilson, aka Falcon (Anthony Mackie) who sprouts exoskeleton wings and comes in handy during the considerable fight/flight scenes, when rival agents nearly bounce off of each other in a frenzy of gunfire and destruction.  Helicarriers are literal airships, heavily armed, guided by satellites, and possessing a data-mining algorithm masterminded by Arnim Zola, whose consciousness has been preserved from way back in the day when swing bands ruled.

Co-directed by brothers Anthony and Joe Russo, the film lacks the charm and charisma of its predecessor and carries on the franchise by doing just that: carrying on - in a series of over-the-top, action-filled, fast-paced confrontations.  

Always amusing is the appearance of Marvel Comics icon Stan Lee, this time as a befuddled security guard.  Patient viewers will be rewarded with two glimpses into the future cinematic franchise encountering one mid-credit and one post-credit.
The Winter Soldier is appropriately named; he’s one cold mutha.  Marvel Comics fans will swoon over the action, but the average moviegoer might get lost in all of the intrigue and bloated combat.  They might expect Captain America to have a larger role; they might even expect to be able to follow all of the myriad characters and plot developments.  Let them try.