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Review: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ Doesn’t Really Care What You Think

guardians 2 review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 picks up right where its predecessor left off both story-wise and in regard to its timeline. Just a few months or so after the a-holes saved the galaxy and became a family, Peter Quill, Drax, Gamora, Rocket, and Groot embark on a new adventure that does something most sequels don’t really do. Rather than go bigger and double down on beloved set pieces of the first film, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 goes smaller and more introspective.

Comparisons will undoubtedly be made to the first two Star Wars movies. The first Guardians was a rollicking space adventure that lampooned the hero’s journey (specifically the “chosen one” trope) and won a lot of hearts through surprise in its ensemble storytelling. It was A New Hope, but for a new generation. In the same way, director and writer James Gunn clearly crafted this follow-up to be Empire Strikes Back, but not really in terms of being “the dark one” where everything goes wrong so the third movie can wrap things up. No, Vol. 2 is very much a standalone sequel, as Dave Schilling poignantly put it in his review.

The story this time around follows the Guardians of the Galaxy taking on a big mercenary job for a group of gold-skinned “conceited douchebags,” capitalizing on their newfound fame as “one-time galaxy savers.” Thanks to some mischief from Rocket, however, the team is chased through a dangerous asteroid field (one of many clear homages to Empire that’s played for laughs) and forced to crash on a nearby planet.

The team splits up at that point (Empire, again) and gets hounded by some old favorites from the previous movie. Yondu and his Ravagers are after the Guardians again and Nebula has Gamora-sized tunnel vision, looking to settle their sibling rivalry over one last fight to the death. There are some other big developments, including Peter’s own struggle with some planet-sized daddy issues that were hinted at during the end of the first film, and there’s a subtler twist going on with Drax, who has become the de-facto heart of the crew in surprising ways, pairing up with newcomer “empath” Mantis for some of the film’s best moments.

guardians 2 review

In some ways, Vol. 2 is as much a paradox of space opera as it is a parody of it. The heroes of the film go to far fewer locations, the main threat of the film is more ambiguous this time around, and even the mixtape has been altered as a plot device. In the first Guardians, “Awesome Mix” was a clever musical tool used to illustrate moments when the team would gel together and prepare for their best moments. It was loud, fun, lively, and reflective of the movie’s tone. The music in this film truly acts as a “B-side” with some tracks that are less familiar, but also deeper. Gunn has crafted a personal story that departs from a lot of what fans loved about the first film by giving them something they might not have known they wanted.

For some, that will amount to major criticism over Vol. 2 being a massive departure from much of what worked in the first film. Yes, the humor is still there in force, but in almost every other respect, Vol. 2 tries hard to make you feel something new about these characters, the universe they inhabit, and what you’re generally looking at. I’m not sure space have ever looked so beautiful the way Gunn and his team see it, rivaling Doctor Strange for sheer insanity in its colorful vignettes of time and space. The paradox, though, is in how these characters are ultimately simpler than the intricate comic-lore heavy environment they inhabit, just as this story tends to be at times, for the better.

That’s probably Vol. 2‘s greatest asset. It exists solely to exist on its own terms, not as a crowd-pleaser or recapturing of previous success. Despite releasing in May, it still aims to be an “August movie.” It does what most sequels should aspire to accomplish in the same situation, especially when following one of Marvel’s best films, period. Vol. 2 is technically a better film and a must-watch for Marvel fans, but more importantly, it’s a great example of how successful a film can be when put in the loving hands of a trusted visionary who doesn’t really care what detractors may think.

Grade: B+

Extra Credits:

  • There are something like five “extra” scenes during the credits and then one at the very end. Some are pure fun while others are fantastic hints at big Marvel movies to come. The credits themselves are also good fun.
  • I didn’t speak much on Baby Groot, but that’s really just because he’s fittingly used as pure comic relief. It makes sense considering Baby Groot actually has the mind of a toddler, and any story arc they might have tried to force on the character would have felt forced and wasteful.
  • I also didn’t get into any of the film’s major flaws, and that’s honestly because they’re mostly nitpicks. The second act, for example, drags a bit and some of the twists are entirely too predictable. But it all still works enough to recommend.
  • I didn’t get a chance to list any of the cast above, so here they are: Chris Pratt as Peter Quill, Zoe Saldana as Gamora, Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer, Vin Diesel as Baby Groot, Bradley Cooper as Rocket, Michael Rooker as Yondu Udonta, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Pom Klementieff as Mantis, Kurt Russell as Ego, Elizabeth Debicki as Ayesha, Chris Sullivan as Taserface, Sean Gunn as Kraglin, and Sylvester Stallone as Stakar Ogord.

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How ‘Big Hero 6: The Series’ Could Bring Back Tadashi

Big Hero 6 is being made into an animated series on Disney XD, set for sometime in 2017. For those of us still hoping for a Tadashi comeback, this is a good thing.

You can read a full transcription of the video above here

Hey friends, hope you enjoy the video this week. My new channel, Jon in Theory, is growing pretty well so far, and the feedback has been awesome since last week’s Doctor Strange video.

Be sure to send me your content suggestions, even if it involves topics I’ve already covered on this site. I’m even planning an updated Pixar Theory episode, which would be quite the undertaking. Again, send me any ideas you think are worth exploring.

One last thing: I want to plug my weekly live show yet again, The Pixar Detectives, which you can check out on Super News. Every Wednesday at 7pm (Pacific), Kayla Savage and I nerd out about Pixar and Disney movies, and we’ve been doing weekly giveaways, like Pixar T-Shirts, paperback copies of The Pixar Theory, and plenty more.

The audience on that show has become huge in recent weeks, and while that’s great, I’m definitely hoping more of you lovely readers check in as well to see what all the noise is about. Last week, for example, we did a live tutorial on how you can draw Doctor Strange as a Pixar character. Next week, we’ll be exploring Moana during an on-location pre-screening, so be sure to check that out, too.

Alright, that’s all from me. Let me know your Big Hero 6 theories in the comments below!


Thanks for reading this. Seriously. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. 

Or just say hello on Twitter: @JonNegroni


 

 

How ‘Doctor Strange’ Compares To The Rest Of The MCU

Doctor Strange arrives in theaters this week, but how does it measure up to the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

You can also read a transcription of this video here.

Hope you guys enjoyed my first video for Jon In Theory, a new channel I’ve been working on (hence my radio silence these past two weeks) in order to give you a wider depth of content (and because many of you have been clamoring for me to do videos since 2012). If you still prefer to read on this site, I’ll be providing transcriptions along with each video, as well.

Jon In Theory is a weekly video blog dedicated to thinking deeply when it comes to entertainment culture. I plan on addressing a lot of topics that range from fan theories to persuasive arguments about film and television. These include ideas I’ve written about in the past, like the Pixar Theory and Inception theories. But I also want to try new things as well, like video essays.

doctor strange

So let me know your thoughts on this first episode, which is a quick quasi-review of Doctor Strange as it relates to the larger MCU. And I’m still doing my live Pixar show on Wednesdays (why am I so busy?), which you can check out on Super News.

Enjoy!


Thanks for reading this. Seriously. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. 

Or just say hello on Twitter: @JonNegroni


 

Marvel Has Been Successful Because It’s Better at Being Different

marvel better different

Until the end of the “superhero golden era” finally comes, we won’t be able to analyze the full impact that Marvel Studios has had with its cinematic universe of movies. But even though we don’t have the full picture at our disposal, everyone has their own reasonable guess for how and why Marvel been the dominant superhero movie franchise for nearly a decade, in terms of both critical and fan reception.

Some of the effects of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) are quite obvious, and I think that’s why vague observations about Marvel Studios are tossed around by its naysayers. When you think of shared universe movies — that is, movies that share the same characters and other sandbox elements without being direct sequels — you might feel the urge to groan a bit, especially if you watch and keep up with a lot of different movie franchises that all strive to replicate what Marvel did so well with Iron Man in 2008.

Sony tried to kickstart a Spider-Man shared universe of villains and ultimately failed. Universal has long been planning a shared universe of monster movies, citing they could have the “Avengers” of Dracula, the Frankenstein monster, the Wolfman, and more. Even a Hanna-Barbera cinematic universe is reportedly in the works, planned to kick off with a new Scooby Doo movie. And this year’s Ghostbusters ends with a universe-setting teaser straight out of the ambiguously defined Marvel formula.

Marvel’s most direct rival, and for several obvious, yet key reasons, is DC Comics, which Warner Bros. owns the exclusive rights to. After a hugely successful trilogy of Batman movies, all helmed by Christopher Nolan and universally praised by fans and critics, Warner Bros. took the next logical step toward establishing a shared universe of their own that could do for Wonder Woman and the Flash what Marvel managed for Iron Man and Captain America, just to name a few.

marvel better different

Remember, just one year after Nolan’s Batman trilogy ended with The Dark Knight Rises, Warner Bros. released Man of Steel, the perfunctory beginning of what was meant to be something completely different compared to anything put out by Marvel Studios.

Except, well, Marvel has already  been “different” by its own standards for years, and it’s found great success doing so, while DC Comics hasn’t. At least not on the same scale.

To be fair, Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice were not financial failures, but they did fail to live up to their profitable potential, making less money domestically than Deadpool, which is based on a character far less popular and recognizable than Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. And even more recently, Suicide Squad has been panned by critics for sharing a lot of the same flaws of these movies, though it will still open to huge box office numbers, regardless.

What’s odd, then, is that the films have been criticized by many for being too different, using phrases like joyless and dark to color a picture of a movie that doesn’t deliver the same experience viewers got with most of the Marvel movies.

marvel better different

Supporters of these DC Comics movies have a right to call out this opinion for being intellectually dishonest. Of course a movie like Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is different, they say. If it were the same formula as a movie like The Avengers, then critics would complain just as feverishly.

Both sides of this argument have it wrong, then. Because what they both forget is that while there is a bare-bones formula to the Marvel movies that makes them feel cohesive — that is, it’s easy to believe the movies exist in the same universe at all — none of them are all that similar to any of the others in just about every other way, unless the movie is a sequel, and even then, Marvel movies have a habit of changing entire subgenres in between their sequels.

One of the best and most famous examples of Marvel being “different” involves the entirety of what sets up the first Avengers movie, which serendipitously released the same year as The Dark Knight Rises. The very concept of setting up an ensemble superhero film after several standalone pictures that establish the characters was brand new at the time and, more importantly, untested.

Yet The Avengers is the highest-grossing superhero film of all time and was universally acclaimed by moviegoers, which holds up even today.

marvel better different

It’s fair to judge Marvel for being good at being different based on the fact that people loved The Avengers, despite how risky the structure of it was, and because it provided a sizable return on investment both financially and even culturally, hence we’re even having this debate about superhero movies being different.

What’s even more interesting, though, is the fact that Marvel movies have continued to be different and surprising, even though they have a proven formula they could repeat on end to minimize the risk of failure.

For example, the Marvel films that have truly defied expectations include Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant-Man, arnhich were both proven hits for the studio, despite being completely different from any other Marvel film in tone, structure, and many other crucial elements.

Guardians of the Galaxy is an action comedy set in space, and most of its characters aren’t even human. That’s a far cry from any other comic book film, period, let alone Marvel movies like Iron Man and even Thor. The premise of Ant-Man is absurd enough, despite the movie actually taking place on Earth. Yet it feels so different as a superhero movie because first and foremost, it’s really a heist film with bits of Edgar Wright’s unique editing style thrown in.

marvel better different

The upcoming Doctor Strange, set to release this November, is also a movie that — judging by the marketing and previous knowledge of the character — looks and feels different from previous Marvel offerings, because it seems to be tackling unchartered territory in terms of fantasy elements and dimensional science for the hero of that movie to experience.

These movies, excluding the as of yet unseen Doctor Strange, have been hits with both critics and casual audiences because yes, they’re different. So it’s strange, then, when both critics and naysayers of Marvel movies speak as if this cinematic universe has a firm license on vague storytelling elements, like humor and quipping. There’s a desire for DC to be the other side of the coin, different and more progressive than what might be called a mainstream superhero franchise with Marvel.

The problem with that desire, though, is that Marvel has already been the other side of that coin, and the other side of many coins that they, themselves, have inserted into the zeitgeist of superhero films. They don’t always get it right, of course, and some of their risks have been paid off better than others, but if DC should take notes on being “different” for the sake of surprising and delighting its fans, it should really be paying more attention to Marvel. Not less.

Because being different, while a good start, is not a merit on its own. Fantastic Four was different, which we can all agree on. But that definitely didn’t improve what was inherently flawed with that film. A non-Marvel movie that’s great at being different is Deadpool, made by Fox, proving that a superhero film doesn’t have to be made by Disney in order for it to be beloved by just about everyone old enough to see it.

marvel better different

I still have high hopes for DC Comics moving forward, though not nearly as high as I used to three years ago. But if you’re reading this and feeling a bit alienated because you want DC Comics and Warner Bros. to keep taking risks and producing films with these iconic characters that demand to be different from what we’ve seen before, then you can definitely take solace in one, major thing: The DC Comics movie universe under Geoff Johns — their new Chief Creative Officer and co-developer of The Flash on CW — kicks off next year with Wonder Woman.

And from what we’ve seen so far of that movie, the future could still be quite bright (not dark) for DC Comics.


I’m Jon and thanks for reading this. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. Or just say hey on Twitter! @JonNegroni

On Second Thought, Zemo Was One of the Best Things About ‘Civil War’

civil war zemo

My initial reaction to Helmut Zemo in Captain America: Civil War was quite similar to the reactions fans and critics have had with most Marvel cinematic villains.

“Is that it?” we all tend to wonder.

The important thing to remember is that most Baron Zemo fans enjoy the more recent incarnations of the character. In his early run, Zemo was a fairly generic “bad guy” seeking revenge against the Avengers because his father died while fighting Captain America.

It wasn’t until the 80s that the character was involved in some more intriguing story arcs, including his formation of the Thunderbolts, which was a team of villains pretending to be heroes who ultimately become heroes for real because they like it so much.

In Civil War, I didn’t see much of this Zemo being played out by the talented Daniel Brühl. True, they both have a thirst for vengeance, and both have a genius-level intellect akin to D.C.’s Lex Luthor. But the characterization was a far cry from the more enigmatic villain we know and hate to love. In Civil War, he’s muted and seemingly interchangeable.

civil war zemo

(Plot spoilers from here on out, so if you haven’t seen Captain America: Civil War, read no further unless you don’t mind getting spoiled.)

You have to admit, though, that the villain in Civil War is also very different from most of the antagonists we’ve seen play out in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. For one thing, the film doesn’t kill him off, which is a typical death wish for villains unless your name is Loki. Also, the film seems very interested in developing Zemo further, likely offering this version of Zemo as more of an origin, foregoing the rest of his arc for future films.

Take a look at some of the other heavy-hitter villains in the MCU. We see the origin of Obadiah Stain in Iron Man as he betrays Tony and dons a bigger, badder suit, only to get killed in the end. Blonsky in The Incredible Hulk also goes through the same process when he becomes the Abomination, only to get killed in the end.

Red Skull? Becomes Red Skull before the movie even starts, and then he gets killed in the end. Ronan? Uses the infinity stone to gain power and gets killed (presumably) in the end. Ultron? He’s literally born and killed in the same running time. Yellowjacket? A copy and paste of Obadiah Stain.

Don’t even get me started on the Mandarin.

civil war zemo

But Zemo’s arc in Civil War isn’t quite as familiar. His evil turn happens entirely off-screen, and months before the movie begins. He doesn’t die by the time the credits roll. In fact, he actually wins in the end, accomplishing exactly what he set out to do. The “super soldiers” are dead. The Avengers have been split up. Their “empire,” as he calls it, has fallen.

The only thing he didn’t account for was Black Panther tagging along and preventing his suicide. The one thing he couldn’t predict was a person actually overcoming their thirst for vengeance.

For once, I’m actually intrigued by what happens next for this villain, even more so than Loki. I think my initial and frankly negative reaction was painted by a decade of getting used to Marvel’s rule book of three-act villains. Now it seems that Marvel (with some help from the Russo brothers and their dream team of screenwriters) is trying something new with its bad guys. They’re treating them like they would their protagonists.

The heroes of the MCU are arguably why we love these movies so much, faults and all. We love, know, and understand these characters. And I’m all for Marvel slowing down with stories for their villains, who should be just as important. Why does Zemo need to have a beginning, middle, and deadly end within the course of a movie that is already stuffed to the brim with major plot points? Why should he be any of the characters we already know doing battle in the scene depicted below?

ciivl war zemo

That means, of course, that we can’t get the full picture of Zemo until we see how the events of Civil War change him. Will he become what he hates the most (someone with a suit) in order to stop the Avengers once and for all? Or will he move on and become something more of an anti-anti-hero, possibly leading the Thunderbolts in his own movie?

I’d be fine with either or even both, and seeing these movies from the big picture one day, it could certainly be one of the best things we got out of Civil War, beyond a few stellar action scenes and a spot-on Peter Parker.


Did you like Zemo in Captain America: Civil War? Let me know in the comments below. 

I’m Jon and thanks for reading this. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. Or just say hey on Twitter! @JonNegroni

Review: ‘Captain America: Civil War’ Is a New Kind of Marvel Movie

review captain america civil war

The villains of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have always struggled, with few exceptions, to entertain on the same level as the heroes. Most of the time, the antagonists are simply bigger, less interesting versions of the hero, complete with a similar skill set. Iron Man set this off with Obadiah Stain, followed by Hulk’s Rampage, Ant-Man’s Yellowjacket, and others.

Civil War has its own uninteresting villain in Daniel Bruhl’s anarchist take on Baron Zemo, but he’s about as central to this film’s emotional center as Ant-Man. His side-villainy aside, Civil War shines because there is no clear antagonist, except for the one Captain America and Iron Man see in each other.

This is a tricky line to balance for plots such as this, because both sides of the conflict require convincing arguments to split audiences believably. For some, it will be irresistible to root for the pragmatic “fall in line” philosophy Tony Stark has grown into since 2008, and it’s one of the most impressive multi-film story arcs of all time considering its movement over the years.

review captain america civil war

While others will see Captain America’s “choice at all costs” dogma to be the more appealing, mostly because his rebellion against Stark and others is what drives the film’s story (it’s his name in the title, after all).

Civil War is the definition of a film that relies on its franchise nature to deliver its most resonant messages. The loneliness Steve Rogers carries as a man out of time is what justifies a frankly stupefying mission to save a man who doesn’t appear to be worth the trouble. But Bucky Barnes (AKA Winter Soldier) is the only connection Rogers has left to his old life, though he admits that even in those days, he couldn’t seem to fit in. And the events of Winter Soldier have already proven to Rogers that answering to a bureaucratic authority is how true empires (like Hydra) are formed.

This is all undercut by Tony Stark’s march against the threats that have popped up time and time again during the course of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. As Vision coldly reasons at one point, “Our strength invites challenge.”

review captain america civil war

And this is a movie where that strength is seen ten-fold, quite literally. The titular face-off is as satisfying as the marketing has been trying to sell you on, thanks to Marvel’s willingness to weave in a large number of subplots that any normal screenwriter would weep at the sight of. Directors Anthony and Joe Russo are complemented well by screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and they successfully make Civil War feel just as much a natural progression of the Captain America movies as it does a true Avengers sequel. And for some, it will be the Avengers sequel they expected from last year’s Age of Ultron.

The action itself is superb, in that it’s plainly obvious that the characters’ abilities were consistently considered when these scenes were written and directed. Captain America uses his shield in inventive ways, but Black Panther and Winter Soldier use vibranium in fighting styles that are unique to them. Spider-Man is a youthful powerhouse who stops often to chat, and Ant-Man lets himself get shot through the air on one of Hawkeye’s arrows.

These moments of simple creativity are what spark life into the long running time, in between moments of intense parkour and admittedly overlong fight sequences that have predictable outcomes. The script itself is tight, save for a few editing tricks that keep the laws of physics glossy, and almost none of the CGI is noticeable enough to lower the stakes of each set piece.

review captain america civil war

All this said, Civil War doesn’t expand the storytelling of the MCU in new ways, but it is a new kind of Marvel movie, in that balances subplots and seeds for future movies in a more graceful way than ever, forcing the viewer to catch up instead of the other way around (exactly like a comic book).

This works in Civil War because it also builds upon what people already love about these characters, their personalities, and how these movies hold them all together. And if that’s the only criteria in which you’re judging the film, then you’ll walk away thinking it’s about perfect.

Grade: A-

Extra Credits:

  • Tom Holland and Chadwick Boseman pull off something amazing by making both Spider-Man and Black Panther so instantly lovable. Their solo movies can’t come fast enough.
  • Which side are you on? Personally, I’m team Cap all the way, which is apparently the wrong side if you ask anyone else I saw this movie with.
  • I love this movie, but not quite as much as the first Avengers. But I can certainly see many people calling this one their favorite of the MCU for years to come.
  • This movie is very similar to Age of Ultron, actually, which I graded the same. Because like UltronCivil War refines the established strengths of its predecessor (Winter Soldier in this case) and gives us more to love based on what already worked before. Heck, I actually gave Winter Soldier an A- as well.
  • I was disappointed by Don Cheadle’s limited screen time this time around, especially compared to some of the other main Avengers. That said, I can’t say that about anyone else in this movie, which is an achievement all in itself.

I’m Jon and thanks for reading this. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. Or just say hey on Twitter! @JonNegroni

Second Opinion: Why ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ Isn’t a Masterpiece

captain america winter soldier opinion

It’s strange that the sequel to one of Marvel Studios’ most ho-hum superhero origin stories is among the most celebrated as a standalone feature (and easily the best sequel of the now large catalogue of films).

Captain America: The Winter Soldier is often the film to talk about when discussing the best of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). But is it ever talked about as a movie that stands among the greatest superhero movies? That’s not as clear and most likely not the case.

Unlike “First Avenger,” Winter Soldier is not a superhero movie that happens to be a period piece. It is instead a superhero movie that happens to be a spy thriller that Robert Redford himself is cast in to echo Three Days of the Condor. Notice, though, that neither movie starts first as a genre that happens to contain superheroes in it, which arguably the best superhero movies do. Because this is, after all, a movie that has to lay the seeds down for future films, for better or worse.

The film centers around a freshly minted Steve Rogers (played by Chris Evans, as confident as ever), the man out of time who’s having trouble adjusting to a life beyond the one he had in the 1940s. His friends, connections, and even his values have been severely outpaced by his biology (and circumstantial preservation), as he’s trapped in a new world that uses him a lot more than they seem to need him.

captain america winter soldier

And he embraces this workload by diving headfirst into his job at S.H.I.E.L.D. and ignoring the suggestions of fellow Avenger Black Widow (played expertly here by Scarlett Johansson)  to get out there again and make a new life for himself. But he’s unable to do this anyway when a shadowed figure from his past arrives to disrupt a Big Brother world that Steve himself is disillusioned by, making the audience wonder why Captain America has to fight this battle at all.

It’s amazing that throughout this runtime, that is the question audiences are wondering. They aren’t put off by Captain America’s name, his moralistic nature, or his costume. Despite the fact that it’s hardly easy to relate to a man who represents excellence in every aspect, from his physical prowess to his righteousness. But the way he represents these ideals is something we can relate to, because almost all of us wish we were a little bit like Captain America, especially those of us who have grown up idolizing superheroes.

It just so happens that the handiwork of Winter Soldier is good cinema as well. The atmosphere, action scenes, and acting are all enhanced by the Russo Brothers’ vision and a solid script as mentioned. The movie is much like Captain America himself, in that it gets the job done — no more, no less.

But it’s the “no more” aspect that ultimately inhibits Winter Soldier from being one of the great superhero movies. Nothing in the film is exactly new or intriguing outside itself, but it’s still ust a great recipe that someone has managed to put together perfectly, rather than a turning point for the genre (not that it needed to be).

captain america winter soldier

This is fine because Winter Soldier already exceeded expectations by daring to even be good at all, putting forward an incredibly entertaining sequel about a character who’s seemed behind the times in more ways than one. Perhaps the film’s status as an underdog is why so many fans call it their favorite of the MCU, even above massive hits like The Avengers. I have a hard time disagreeing with them, because despite all of the credit Winter Soldier owes to previous Marvel films, it’s easily the most complete out of all of them.

Second Opinion Grade: A-


I’m Jon and thanks for reading this. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. Or just say hey on Twitter! @JonNegroni

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