‘CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR’: Dueling Friends Concludes with Poignant Messages of Patriotism and Friendship

June 3, 2016 Rissi JC 26 Comments

Marvel is brilliant. The worlds they create in this Marvel Cinematic Universe never cease to amaze me. Even when I go into one of their films predisposed to dislike it, I walk out feeling “all the feels,” and impressed beyond comprehension. Before I expand on this, meet the characters of ‘Civil War’ and discover the story. 

Captain America: Civil War (2016) Film Review

The Avengers assembled to bring peace, and bring a sense of security and safety to the world. Yet unfortunately, their latest mission ends with collateral damage, a burden that Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) a.k.a Scarlett bares heavily. This inspires the government to take action against the Avengers by forming an act that would place restrictions on how the operations of the Avengers. Tony (Robert Downey Jr.) agrees with the Accords, Steve (Chris Evans) does not. Sides are taken, and a summit is arranged.  

Placing great complications on things is the reemergence of Bucky (Sebastian Stan) or the Winter Soldier. Steve’s best friend from the streets of Brooklyn, letting go of his past isn’t something Steve can reconcile. When Bucky is accused of murdering a member of the royal family seeking peace at the summit, everything does sideways. Steve sets out to save him while Tony assembles his group of Avengers to fight against Steve and bring him back to be formally charged for his actions against the Avengers. 

FILM REVIEW | ‘Avengers, Age of Ultron’ (2015)
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One of the things films like this does freakishly well is make us fall head over heels in love with something (like a couple to ship or a team working towards a common goal) and then they shatter our hearts in a thousand tiny little pieces. ‘Civil War’ is one such film. Walking out of this film makes me feel relieved and simultaneously crushed. The problem isn’t that these characters disagree (this will happen and is normal), it’s that what they are latterly attempting to prevent, stop, is in harm when they work against one another. For all their petty disagreements and differing convictions (which I admire), they are ultimately all friends and as a unit is when they’re strongest. There is truth and safety in numbers.  

“I know you’re doing what you believe in, and that’s all any of us can do. That’s all any of us should… so no matter what, I promise you, if you need us – if you need me – I’ll be there.” – Captain America 

‘CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR’: Dueling Friends Concludes with Poignant Messages of Patriotism and Friendship. All text is © Rissi JC

After parsing out some unflattering issues, let me say, this film gives so much more than I could hope for. I understand the “fighting” now, and do empathize with the deeper, more personal reasons specifically between Tony and Steve. The way the writer’s do this is pure brilliance. I like that the film doesn’t laser focus on the feud. As a solo outing in the MCU timeline, I did wonder about the challenge of losing Captain America in the fray since this seems to be more a gateway to the third Avenger film. Fortunately for this character, nothing is further from the truth. Steve still manages to be the focus while every one of these beloved characters who surround him are, as people, help, challenge, and change him. 

FILM REVIEW | ‘Doctor Strange’ (2016): A Mind Bending Conspiracy of Shapes (Plus Benedict Cumberbatch!)

This is the perfect Segway to talk about the actors and the respective characters they play. Chris and Robert are top-form. They continue to grow into these characters with wisdom. In addition to the return of Wanda (growing to love this complex character) and Bucky, many others return. We again see Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha; Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye (did I mention I’m one of the few people who loves his story arc in ‘Age of Ultron’?); Paul Bettany’s Vision evolves into more than a voice; Anthony Mackie Sam Wilson (always did love this guy’s friendship with Steve); Paul Rudd’s Ant-Man (so much YES); Emily VanCamp’s Agent 13 (THAT kiss though); and of course, the much buzzed about return of Spider-Man. This time Tom Holland steps in the iconic web, and I have to say, his introduction couldn’t have been better. The scene between Holland and RDJ is perfection.  

‘CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR’: Dueling Friends Concludes with Poignant Messages of Patriotism and Friendship. All text is © Rissi JC

Tears and laughter come in equal parts in Captain America: Civil War. It teaches some valuable lessons along the way, but coming out the other side, I am still “Team Cap.” Accepting responsibility when we error is a moral requirement, but messing with the gift of free will is not something I believe should be compromised. Tony’s good intentions were going to mess with that; Steve has to remind him that his quest to do good all began with his choice to change something. Because of this, my fangirl heart does feel some sense of resolution by the time this 2+ hour hulk of a picture wraps up. Tony made a gesture of good will to help Steve, and though it ends
badly, it proves no matter what, family is more important.

(This post does contain affiliate links, which means – at no extra cost to you, I may receive a small commission if you make a purchase through a link. Read the disclosure page for details.)

You can purchase Captain America: Civil War on DVD and Bluray or own/rent digitally on Amazon Video.

Content: there is the typical sci-fi violence, some minor profanity (very little), and perhaps an innuendo or two. The film is PG13.

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

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  • Ivy Miranda June 3, 2016 at 1:44 AM

    Loved this movie! Great review!

    • Rissi June 5, 2016 at 7:51 PM

      Thanks for dropping by and for reading, Ivy; I agree. This was amazing! :)

  • Sarah & Bernie June 3, 2016 at 2:02 PM

    I loved the movie! Great review! And I love the pictures! Keep up the great work.
    Ellie R.

    • Rissi June 5, 2016 at 8:03 PM

      Thanks, Ellie. Appreciate you stopping by with the kind words, and for reading this review – wasn't this film amazing!? :)

  • Meghan M. Gorecki June 3, 2016 at 2:31 PM

    LOVE this review, Rissi–and agree with it on all counts. But for "That kiss though!" I'm a Steve/Peggy "shipper" all the way and am not a fan of Agent 13/Sharon Carter somewhat because I'm biased to Peggy *cough* andSteveisMYfuturehusband *ahem* ;)

    • Rissi June 5, 2016 at 8:07 PM

      THANK YOU so much for reading, Meghan! Appreciate it, friend.

      I know, I'm totally in the minority about a new ship for Steve. :D I was disappointed at first, but since there'd be no logical way to reunite the two (I'm now firmly happy with Steve in our world), I've come to accept him being with someone new. And that someone had best be Sharon (or some other new female character) as opposed to the outrageous rumors that floated around prior to this film releasing.

      LOL! Love your "future husband" add stuck in at the end. ;)

    • The Artist Librarian June 7, 2016 at 6:48 AM

      I totally understand, Meghan. I'm also more of a Peggy/Steve fan than Sharon/Steve, though from what I know of the comic books, Sharon and Steve become a couple, so I'd rather that be the same in the movies rather than another pairing. If it can't be Peggy, I'd rather have Sharon, though it is kind of awkward to think that Sharon's Peggy's niece. =)

    • Rissi June 7, 2016 at 11:54 PM

      Great thoughts! Thanks for sharing your opinion about the Steve/Peggy or Steve/Sharon ship. :)

  • Bekah M. June 4, 2016 at 2:36 AM

    Yes, yes and YES!! I agree with everything you said, wholeheartedly!! "Accepting responsibility when we error is a moral requirement, but messing with the gift of free will is not something I believe should be compromised." Extremely well said, Rissi. I thoroughly enjoyed this movie (it was EPIC!!) even though I was really scared to see it, they did a good job. I actually have seen it twice already! Great review – LOVE the pictures you chose!

    • Rissi June 5, 2016 at 8:14 PM

      Thanks so much, as always, Bekah for being a reading and for the comment. Always glad to get your take, friend. :)

      LOVED this one. I'd totally see it again too, but I'll for sure buy the BluRay. My mom actually suggested we go see this, since she knew that I was a big fan of these, so it was kind of a whim see, and I'm so glad she "pushed" me to go because I walked away thinking it one of MCU's best yet. :)

      Epic = so much YES!

  • Sarah B June 4, 2016 at 4:59 PM

    I completely agree! This movie rocked! And Cap <3

    • Rissi June 5, 2016 at 8:15 PM

      The Cap is a fantastic character, Sarah. I so agree. :) Thanks a bunch for stopping by and for the comment. Visit anytime. :)

  • Net - "It's a Wonderful Movie" June 5, 2016 at 4:07 PM

    Awesome!!! Loved reading your review, Rissi! Great Pics, too!

    I had heard Captain America was good, intense at times, but still good. Glad your review confirms it!!!

    God Bless, Net


    • Rissi June 5, 2016 at 8:19 PM

      Thank you, Net. I had lots of fun writing it – I appreciate you reading it and sharing your thoughts. :) Part of the fun of blogging? Picking out the pictures!

      Captain America is amazing! Not only the films, but him as a character too. Have you seen any of the films in the Marvel franchise? :)

  • Alyssa C. June 6, 2016 at 11:20 PM

    Awesome review! Hello, fellow Team Cap member! :)

    • Rissi June 7, 2016 at 11:55 PM

      *Waves* Hello Team Cap fangirl! Glad there are so many of us. :)

  • The Artist Librarian June 7, 2016 at 6:54 AM

    I totally hated the idea of the Civil War comic book storyline, so I wasn't thrilled that Marvel was going to do Civil War on the silver screen. I'm not a fan of the "superheroes against superheroes" thing –c'mon, you guys should be fighting the bad guys, not each other! However, as you mentioned, they won me over. I ended up really liking the film, especially the fight choreography and they did a good job presenting a balanced point of view. It wasn't as clear cut as some might think (like many real life situations).

    New members of the cast totally held their own. Spidey was great and Black Panther had an amazing debut –perfect segue into his upcoming film. I'm so excited for that one because it's a not-as-well-known superhero getting his chance to shine. Marvel's doing a great job with those: e.g. Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy.

    Looking forward to what's next (and hoping for a Pepperony reunion … was it just because they couldn't or didn't want to get the actress back?)

    • Rissi June 8, 2016 at 12:00 AM

      NEITHER AM I! (Superhero vs. Superhero. In my cinematic universe, this is NOT copacetic.) I was pleasantly surprised by this one too! It went beyond what I assumed it would, and I respect that filmmakers took the risk… especially if we see Steve and Tony on the same side again come the 'Infinity War' flicks.

      Marvel IS indeed doing great things. I loved Spidey's new intro and seeing Ant-Man again was hilarious. :)

      Far as I know Gwyneth was only contracted for the three Iron Man films and appeared in Avengers as a "favor." I have hopes she'll be back too since I did really like her and Tony together. :)

    • The Artist Librarian June 12, 2016 at 6:53 AM

      Yeah, everything's counting down to Infinity Wars! ^_^

      Aw, I didn't know that about Gwyneth Paltrow –I hope they bring her back. I think in the comics she ends up marrying Happy Hogan, but I'm holding out hope … =)

    • Rissi June 15, 2016 at 1:04 AM

      …it all leads up to this final battle in 'Infinity Wars.' *said in an annoying announcers voice* ;) I'm not sure what the plot is going to be for these films, but I hope it involves some form of healing.

      I'd love to see Gwyneth back. Considering the rules are often broken in the film adaptations (in comparison to the comics), I wouldn't be surprised if they do keep her with Tony. Or that'd be ideal. We ship those two! :)

  • Sarah June 9, 2016 at 4:13 PM

    Nice review, Rissi — I'm glad you liked it in spite of your reservations going in. :) I was glad the movie wasn't so focused on the feud too. That's when I enjoyed it most.

    • Rissi June 10, 2016 at 1:16 AM

      I'm glad you enjoyed that aspect, Sarah. I thought it was a great thing indeed. :) Thank you so much for reading and visiting. Always glad to have your take on movies!

  • Heather July 16, 2016 at 1:52 AM

    I absolutely LOVED the film. It was brilliant on so many levels. For some reason, the character development seemed to really come together this time! I've enjoyed all the movies, but this one just really jived!! Ant Man is such a fun addition. He was the missing "comedy relief" in my opinion. ;-) Also, I love Emily VanCamp. :)

    • Rissi September 14, 2016 at 12:09 AM

      Hi Heather! My apologies for missing this comment; not sure how that happened.

      I loved this one too – so much more than I anticipated. The end always felt more hopeful that I'd have thought and I love that. Here's hoping the next Avengers film BUILDS on that rather than undoes anything.

      YES! Ant-Man is one of THE best Marvel characters ever.

      Also, I agree. Emily is a solid addition. I don't know that writer's will take the "ship" between her and the Cap anywhere (I suspect that random kiss was kind of "testing the waters" if you will), but I'd be totally fine with it if they do. :)

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