Somewhat behind the times, I’ve finally managed to see the newest Captain America film. With practically everything else covered, I’m going to keep this short. The first twenty minutes established the ultimate plothole. This was most definitely NOT a Captain America film.
The first Cap film was brilliant. The second was inspired. But this was not the third in the line. The First Avenger revolved around the creation and adventures of Captain America in WWII and then his freezing after a completely reasonless nosedive. The Winter Soldier re-introduced Bucky Barnes and his hypnotic Hydra handlers. But labelling Civil War as a Captain America film is like saying Age of Ultron was an Iron Man film. Tony creates an AI, it goes rogue and he needs to clean up his mess. Oh, and the Avengers are there. Civil War is Steve going rogue to protect his friend from the 1940’s. With the Avengers hovering around.
Spoilers begin here.
The film starts off with the new group of Avengers hunting down Crossbones, an old Hydra agent last seen in the crumbling building towards the end of Winter Soldier. Following a failed attempt to contain a bomb, Scarlet Witch is blamed for the death of several Wakandans. The world erupts in panic. For once, the Avengers are clearly to blame. Governments start trying to put a leash on the planet savers and Captain America is understandably having none of it when his best friend is being blamed with just a single photo as proof.
If the Avengers had been called back to their compound with Falcon and Cap going off to save Bucky, that would have been a Captain America film. If Tony had chased them, even better. But with the full range of Avengers crawling out of the woodwork (including retired Hawkeye and newbies Ant-Man and Spider-Man), why not just drop the first half and name the film Civil War?
The First Avenger introduced an Infinity Stone, Captain America, Bucky and the many-headed Hydra. Winter Soldier took the idea and continued it. Civil War brought in the Sokovia Accords, all the Avengers, the Civil War storyline (obviously), two new heroes and sent Bucky back to his icy sleep. Take out Bucky and you have an Avengers film. Take away the Avengers and you have Captain America film. But having both at once leaves the scales tipped towards being an Avengers film or just ‘Civil War’.
Iron Man referenced other Avengers plenty of times in his films. Thor: The Dark World made a passing comment about the Battle of New York. Winter Soldier crammed everything it could with the Hydra checklist. But, other than those without their own films, Avengers have always stayed within their own franchises. Grab the eraser and scratch out that first part. Regardless of what it claims, this film is not Cap’s.
Hang on, I’ve figured out the quickest way to list characters. Avengers not appearing: Thor, Hulk, and Fury. That’s it. Everyone else is there and newcomers. Enjoy Avengers III.