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CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER

SYNOPSIS:
Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and battles a new threat from old history: the Soviet agent known as the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan).

Review by Louise Keller:
Don't trust anyone is the mantra of this 3D Marvel comic sequel, whose unfathomable complex plot unravels among massive stunts and non-stop major action. The action, with its frenetic editing, is underlined by a pounding, percussion-heavy score; cars spin, twist and flip, buildings crumble and spectacular explosions are par for the course. High energy martial arts choreography and humour by way of slick one-liners are in plentiful supply too, and as expected, the film is non-stop dizzying action designed to propel teenage boys into comic-book heaven.

In the 45 minute lead up before the main plot reveals itself, there is a dramatic hostage rescue mission on a ship when Captain America shows his fitness and indestructible skills. This follows a brief recap of the events that transformed Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) into a Super Soldier. The plot involves Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury, director of the peacekeeping body S.H.I.E.L.D., his high ranking colleague Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford) who reveals his different sides and the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), the brain-washed Super Soldier with an indestructible metal arm, who was Steve Rogers' best friend in their former life.

Highlights include a thrilling sequence in which Nick Fury is attacked from all angles as he sits in his armoured 4WD and the fight-scene in which Captain America is surrounded by adversaries in a glass lift located on the side of a skyscraper. Redford is wasted in a non-descript role that offers no challenges and the mainstay of the film relies on the push-pull relationship between Captain America and the Winter Soldier. Stan has a sultry presence, while the impressively built Evans effectively embodies his heroic character.

Scarlett Johansson, with a sleek, scarlet bob is an appealing presence as Natasha Romanoff and the Black Widow and delivers some good lines including 'Everyone we know is trying to kill us.' Anthony Mackie is also good value as Sam Wilson / The Falcon, skilled in aerial combat. The film can more or less be summed up when Captain America answers The Falcon's question which are good guys or bad guys, by simply saying: 'If they're shooting at you, they're the bad guys.'

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 1

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER (M)
(US, 2014)

CAST: Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Cobie Smulders, Hayley Atwell, Dominic Cooper, Emily Van Camp, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Redford, Anthony Mackie, Callan Mulvey, Toby Jones, Frank Grillo, Sebastian Stan

PRODUCER: Kevin Feige

DIRECTOR: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo

SCRIPT: Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Trent Opaloch

EDITOR: Jeffrey Ford

MUSIC: Henry Jackman

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Peter Wenham

RUNNING TIME: 136 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Walt Disney

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: April 3, 2014







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