Captain America: The Winter Soldier - Did it live up to the hype? Yes - 3.5 stars

Captain America is one of the most recognisable heroes of The Avengers and Marvel Universe, but one of the least known character by the general public. The Winter Soldier chapter of Captain America shows the struggle Steve Rogers has with his own identity in the modern world. The primary challenge of the film is the confrontation with his past with a nemesis, the Soviet agent known as the Winter Soldier and the force that created him. 

The Hype

I will have to admit it, Captain America is my favourite character in the Marvel Universe. I was not thrilled with the original film, but The Avengers helped to redeem this hero of old. Laying that on the table, I went into The Winter Soldier with high expectations. Which can be good or bad. 

Did this film live up to the hype? Yes

Direction, Acting & Storyline: 4.5 stars
 and  did a masterful job of bringing in Captain America's past and incorporating it into his modern life. There is the internal struggle with the past he left behind and the responsibilities of the present reflect the  the turmoil of S.H.E.I.L.D. 

The Winter Soldier was a good addition to the storyline and gave us the right amount of tension which added to the internal and external challenges of Captain America. The obvious plot holes and suspension of disbelief that come with comic book sourced films did not diminish the enjoyment. 

C (The Avengers) plays Captain America well. In comparison to his role in The Fantastic Four and The Losers, he seems to have to hold back his comedic ability, but manages to hold the moral centre of the film.The supporting cast  of Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and their dark pasts and personalities, help to bring the balance needed to keep the lead character from being too boring. Nothing in these films will win accolades for acting prowess, but the story and the acting make the film fun. Robert Redford was a nice touch, but I am not sure he was as convincing in his role. The addition of new villains and allies was good, but started to get a bit crowded toward the end of the film. 

Visual Effects: 4 stars
Is there anything new in the realm of visual effects? Not really. Yet, the visuals are well done and are essential for the film to be convincing. To minimise the world that is created would be a disservice to the film makers. The fact the CGI does not get in the way is worth noting. 

Family Component: 2.5 stars
The violence level of this film makes this film suited for teens and adults. It can be argued that society has become desensitised to the violence levels, but those that argue from this position must have not read too many comic book growing up. I would not condone excessive violence, but it is part of the storyline of this genre.

The language and innuendo are at a minimum. 

Was it a good choice for a date night? I saw this film with my wife. As we left this movie, She encouraged me to see the next superhero film with my son instead. She saw the value of the film, but it was she did not enjoy it as much as I did. Even though Chris Evans has appeal, I am not sure the Film is going to be liked by the ladies as much as the blokes. 

God Component: 2 stars
The saviour complex of most superhero films can open the discussion of God, but it is not an overt component of the film. In Captain America : The Winter Soldier the closest reference to God is the swearing on the Bible in the final scenes. 

Overall Rating: 3.5 stars
Prior to watching the film, the previews were of other superhero or comic book sourced films and it could cause me jump on the bandwagon of 'Hero fatigue'. 

But, not with this film. Captain America : The Winter Soldier lived up to the hype. It was fun to watch and kept my attention until after the final credits. 

This is a film that is highly recommended to be seen in theatres. 

Written by Russell Matthews based on a five star rating system @ Russelling Reviews