Ever since Iron Man made his big screen debut way back in 2008, we’ve been teased with The Avengers. Captain America is the final member of the team to get his time in the spotlight before they all come together to battle evil next year. Considering he is the “first Avenger,” it’s only fitting that he usher in the new era. So, how does he stack up against the other superhero films as of late?
Captain America: The First Avenger takes us back to before there was Iron Man or the Hulk. It’s World War II, and America is in the heart of the war against Hitler and the Nazi regime. In an effort to turn the tide, scientists have created a serum to create the perfect soldier. Now, if only they had the perfect test subject as well.
Steve Rogers isn’t what you would consider to be soldier of any type. He’s small, weak, frail and has a nasty bout of asthma. He’s far from the typical war soldier you see the military signing up to go over seas. Still, he has a good heart and wants to serve his country. Because of this, Dr. Abraham Erskine sees him as the ideal candidate for the Super Soldier Program. Thus, Captain America was born.
The film is broken into various sections that depict the evolution of Steve Rogers into the Captain America we’re familiar with today. Using fancy CGI techniques, we’re able to see a small and bare-boned Chris Evans. At first it looks a little awkward seeing Evans displayed this way, even more so when he speaks with his normal deep sounding voice. Eventually however, you adjust and begin to actually believe this is the way he really looks. Pretty soon that’s all a thing of the past because by that point he’s about to become the buff Captain America.
We see him in action almost immediately after Steve Rogers turns into the perfect soldier. Chasing cars, jumping bridges and dodging bullets now are like second nature to him. One thing he doesn’t do however is fight Nazis. While Hitler and his regime are mentioned, the main enemy of the film is HYDRA, one of Hitler’s weapon manufacturers led by the infamous Johann Schmidt aka Red Skull. Like Captain America, Red Skull possesses superhuman strength and agility, making him a worthy foe.
The gist of Captain America is exactly what you would expect; Americans kicking some major ass with Captain America leading the charge. Fans of the comic will be delighted to see familiar faces such as Sgt. James "Bucky" Barnes and the Howling Commandos. There’s also a throwback to the classic Captain America costume and pointed shield. Speaking of his shield…
One of the coolest things about the film is the Captain’s signature shield. Not only does it deflect just about everything, including lasers, but Rogers can skillfully fling the shield at enemies and somehow it manages to return to him. It’s quite the sight to behold. The shield is what makes Captain America Captain America and the film renders it perfectly.
If you’ve been a fan of Marvels latest superhero adaptations, then you’ll no doubt enjoy Captain America. While it doesn’t have the same grandness of the others, it’s a suitable distraction while we wait for The Avengers to assemble.