Thor and Iron Man have both made their mark on the silver screen and established their links to the forthcoming Avengers smackdown, so itís about time that we got to meet the man who started it all. With an origin story thatís more straightforward than either of his predecessors, the Cap is surely the man to complete the line-up in perfect style.
Itís 1942 and the War in Europe is raging fiercely. Plucky little Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) wants to do his bit for his country and fight alongside his friends, but heís too short, too scrawny and has too many medical problems to even be considered. Luckily, his daring is what counts to Doctor Erskine (Stanley Tucci), who signs up young Rogers for the Super Soldier program and before you can say Ďthat sounds riskyí a new superhero is born.
Just in time, too, as the villainous Johann Schmitt (Hugo Weaving) discovers the Cosmic Cube, a celestial entity of pure energy. With it, Schmitt can finally bring Hydra out of the shadows of the Third Reich and dominate the entire world.
Itís a cheesy film, and deliberately so. Being based on the classic comics, this manages to throw in everything from mystical artefacts to sci-fi 1940ís experiments, hitting just about everything in between. The design of the world feels as though it could have existed in the comics of the day, with super tanks, futuristic guns and laser beams all co-existing in the same shot.
The CGI is excellent throughout, particularly during the first act, with Chris Evansí face magically plastered onto the body of a short, skinny guy without looking at all terrifying. Everything feels solid and real enough, while simultaneously looking like a comic book when things kick off Ė the way Rogers flings the shield around in the middle of a fight is a genuine crowd pleaser.
While itís a shame that most of the acting is hampered by dodgy German accents (do ve really need to har people talkingk like zis to undershtand zat zey are Cherman?), Evans shines in his role as the Captain. Thatís not to say that the supporting cast are any less exemplary Ė Weaving captivates as he always does in his villain role, while Dominic Cooper and Hayley Atwell hold up surprisingly well considering how flat their characters are. Naturally Tommy Lee Jones out-awesomes just about everyone with his Grumpy Army Guy shtick, but thatís what happens when you hire Tommy Lee Jones to do his Grumpy Army Guy shtick.
One the whole, Captain America is a fairly enjoyable movie. It can take what seems like an eternity to get moving, but once it does, the movie really picks up the pace. The few highly awkward pro-America scenes might not go down too well outside the States, but ignore those and whatís left is a good, solid superhero action film that simultaneously manages to be its own product and forces itself into the established canon. Now for The Avengers.