A few months ago I reviewed a story of a rich billionaire ego maniac fighting an over powered boy scout based on ideological differences. Now lets see it done properly in……………………………
So why is everyone fighting? Well Tony is an ego maniac, Steve won’t stay down and everyone else just kind of tags along. Truth be told it’s far more complicated than that and involves soviet agents, U.N peace treaties and an African prince. It’s closer to the comics than Age of Ultron managed but that’s not saying much. We start with a team of heroic Americans managing to save yet another foreign country from “evil terrorists”.
Turns out people aren’t too happy about this set up of over powered vigilantes barging in and barging out again on a whim and Tony has once more decided that he is the person to solve the mess they are in. After all he’s Tony Stank, the worlds “smartest”, “sexiest” man, if he can’t solve it then who can? Unfortunately this comes at the same moment that Steve’s old mate Bucky has stepped up his game to blowing up the United Nations. As usual nobody can be bothered to stop and talk this over like adults and soon the Avengers are split down the middle roping in second stringers left right and centre.
This brings us to Spiderman who has a bit more screen-time than you might imagine as Marvel is desperate to prove that they can do him properly and make you forget all those other spider-men swinging around your noggin. Truth be told they might be right. While I was going in ready to hate on the kid I think they may have sold me, at least enough to give him a chance. Though its interesting to note even they are calling out the *ahem* youthful looking Aunt May. Not that I’m complaining and not just for obvious reasons. We need to set this one apart from the others and a no longer doddering aged Aunt May might help. We are also six months in to his web swinging tour at this point meaning we don’t need to sit through another origin story as; though the audience can now be expected to remember basic pop culture facts that have been part of the Zeitgeist for the last few decades. You hear that Zack Snyder?
As for being closer to the comics. Well in the comics they disagree over a fairly logical point and then one side proceeds to start an over the top cackling mad science scheme in order to wrap things up. In the movie the two sides fall out over, again, a fairly logical and valid point. Here instead they kind of drop it about half way in and focus on smashing the action figures together. Most of said action figures have a motivation for being on which side they choose. Well apart from Black Widow who is *spoiler* simply on her chosen side so she can switch part way through. Even Vision is given some motivation; even if that is just for tasteful casual wear and the promise that him and the younger Olsen sister(Scarlet Witch) get to make out at some point.
These “valid” and “logical points” of theres, along with tragic back stories and giant set pieces, mean this is a fairly sombre Marvel movie which makes the fight scene stand out all the more and I guess that’s what Marvel wants. The first half of the movie is a very serious affair, the second half the movie is an even more serious affair. The fight scene in the middle is full of jokes that had the whole cinema I was in laughing. This I think is what you need when you’re favourite heroes are beating the snot out of each other, something to distract from the notion that a slight miscalculation could have your favourite super hero killing your second favourite super hero, or vice versa. The sides are, I believe deliberately, fairly even and the fight fairly well shot though there was the niggling doubt of people all stood around off screen waiting for the camera to come to them, rather than this being a true organic brawl. Hawkeye comes in to re-enact the cover the internet called for and before you know it the scrap is over with.
Zemo managed to be a better villain than I was expecting and his motivation and driving force actually managed to bring the movie back to its central point without feeling at all forced. Sure it’s not the Baron Zemo we know from the comics and I’m sure there are a few fans out there treating this like the Mandarin but overall I’m fairly happy.
It’s a better Avengers movie than ‘Avengers 2’ and it’s a far better movie than ‘Avengers 2’ and while everyone is given something to do it is at its heart a Captain America story. No, that’s not really true. For a story needs an end and while this has “an end” to it, it feels like a set up for the next big motion picture. Right now we’re still the boulder scene at the opening of ‘Raiders’ and hopefully one day soon we will get to the airplane take off and opening credits too.