(During quarantine my girlfriend and I are going through the Marvel movies chronologically. Surprisingly, she is really enjoying them, maybe even more than me. We are already a couple down and I’m gunna do write-ups for all of ‘em, the good and the bad.)
I don’t know if the plot of Civil War was reactionary after fans thought the final act of ‘Ultron’ was over the top, but the Russo brothers, MCU’s directing wizards, deliver a natural story that combats those events while also creating fantastical scenes that top those of The Avengers.
The Avengers split themselves in to two camps; one camp believe they should let the government take control of them, the other camp think they work better when being their own decision makers. There are arguments for both sides that even creates endlessly interesting hypothetical debates too. The movie tells the story really well and the way each character decides which side to be on is completely believable and natural based on their history (except for Scarlet Witch, her decision making makes no sense and she didn’t learn her lesson, not one bit.)
The big deal of this movie is obviously the airport scene. It’s amazing. There is no question about it, and if anybody disagrees then they are blind. Simple as that. Ant-Man steals the show, especially when Giant-Man shows up, and Paul Rudd’s evil grin when he grabs war machine like he’s a toy is the best shot in the movie.
I do have several questions about the airport scene, and this is one of the most straightforward scenes in the entire 2.5hr movie. First of all, how the hell does War Machine survive that fall? Another question; Isn’t it weird that nobody has a problem with kicking the shit out of a 15 year old? Obviously nobody can see Spider-Man’s face, but it’s so clear. That’s when I realised that the guys are actually fucking wack-jobs.
Anyway, the airport scene is the veil of the movie. Yeah, the veil is beautiful but when you pull the veil back, you’ve still got a six out of 10 bride, y’know. Civil War’s screenplay is a war zone (the plot more so than the dialogue.)
Even when it comes to the airport scene, it’s hard to give props to the writers when they are playing in a sandbox where the castles have already been built. Of course Spider-Man stealing Captain America’s shield is gonna be great. Of course Ant-Man stealing it from Spider-Man is gonna be even greater. I’m pretty sure I wrote the same scene when I was six years old, playing with action figures. It’s hard to give the writers credit when everything behind the veil is a convoluted mess in order to get two characters to turn against each other.
What is going on with how’d-you-call-him, the villain? This takes the cake for worst villain yet. Yeah, Iron-Man 2 had Sam Rockwell’s goofy dancing weapons scientist, and Ultron was basically desktop computer software, but the villain in Civil War is… a guy. How did “the guy” even know what happened in 1991? How did “the guy” even know that Iron Man would be in that cave to see the video tape. How did… never-mind. I could go on forever, but the truth is, people don’t even care. People just wanna see Cap and Stark kick each other.
A lot of this reads like I dislike Civil War more than I do, but I have to play devil’s advocate and expose the movie’s warts when everyone loves this film. Civil War is very, very good. The Russos continue their espionage spy thriller movie-making, while heading full throttle in to the world-building and having the daunting task of fast-tracking multiple new characters’ arcs. Oh, one more question; How does Black Widow even know Black Panther in the first place? Is it because they share first names?
One more thing, Black Panther totally reminds me of when Mac played the Night Man in ‘Always Sunny.’