HAMBURG — Captain America has got to be the oddest superhero. Unlike Superman, Batman and Spiderman, Captain America has no innate superhuman powers. His abilities are the result of a lab experiment in which he was injected with a serum that resulted in transforming him into the perfect human specimen.
His strength, endurance and reflexes are at a maximum. He never tires. His body renews the serum, so it never wears off. Pretty neat; where can I acquire this terrific substance?
In “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” Steve Rogers returns as his alter ego, Captain America, wearing his patriotic costume and brandishing his indestructible shield, to once again save the world.
Isn’t this basically the plot of most superhero movies? But Captain America is different in so many ways. He is more human. He is simple, direct and uncomplicated. I like him and I liked this movie.
I will admit that there was much I did not understand, but I knew I had just seen a good movie.
Let me explain. This may be helpful to anyone else who is planning to see this film. At the conclusion of the movie, I saw an usher reading the credits, as they rolled by. Something told me he was a fan, so I asked him what he thought of this movie. We got into a discussion in which I learned about what I should do to fill in the blanks and help me understand what I just saw.
It apparently helps comprehension if you have seen “Captain America: The First Avenger” and “The Avengers,” in that order.
That very evening, I went to my nearby Redbox©, rented “Captain America: The First Avenger,” watched it, and loved it. The next day, I watched “The Avengers” on Netflix© and found that to my liking, as well.
The result of these viewings led me to a clearer understanding of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” and a new appreciation for this film. I am not sure I like this practice of movie serials, where knowledge of the previous films is necessary, but that is the deal and I am powerless to change it. That said, I can recommend this movie to especially fans of the other two.
Chris Evans as our superhero is perfect. Unassuming and likeable, he gets the job done. The ubiquitous Scarlett Johansson returns as the Black Widow, with special powers of her own.
Introduced in this film is a sort of sidekick for Captain America, The Falcon, played by Anthony Mackie. Our team of heroes is embroiled in an unusual plot.
Captain America becomes the hunted, rather than the hunter. His enemies are many, but one surprisingly shocking enemy surfaces: the Winter Soldier. This throws Captain America into a tailspin of incredulous conflict, especially because of the Winter Soldier’s true identity. I won’t reveal any more, except to say that this revelation is all the more powerful, if you have seen the first Captain America movie.
Samuel Jackson returned as Nick Fury. Robert Redford appeared as a pretty lame villain in a pretty lame performance. Fortunately, Redford does not spoil the movie. What with the personal dramas and the extraordinary action throughout, Redford is a minor quibble.
Brilliantly edited and boldly directed, this film is another hit for Marvel Studios©.
“Captain America: The Winter Soldier” is currently playing in theaters.