Captain America: Civil War (2D) (12A)
Running time 2hr 27mins
FRANKLY, if you like Marvel films, you are safe going to see this one, though you may be a little disappointed. My rating of Captain America: Civil War is entirely subjective and I am not the target audience. In all honesty, I found it flat, one-paced and uninvolving, not to mention very long. But this is unashamedly a CGI-heavy franchise movie, designed purely to entertain, and without these blockbusters many local multiplexes would not exist, so let’s be thankful for that. If you are looking for a thought-provoking evening out, look elsewhere. I could also see that there would be plenty to enjoy in the action in 3D for those that like that sort of thing.
The story is taken from a seven-part comic book series called Civil War, launched about 10 years ago and getting everyone and all the action on screen coherently evidently posed challenges, which the filmmakers have not really met. From the off we are dealt a curious mix of the complex and very basic, as the Russo brothers weave a bunch of superheroes into what is essentially a sub-Bond revenge thriller, along the way taking us on a violent and somewhat confusing tour of real and fictional European destinations.
For almost the whole of its bloated running time, the film consists of epileptic and frankly dull fight sequences alternating with static and dull dialogue sections in which various combinations of under-written characters agonise over their allegiances and
motivation.The plot creaks forward so unbelievably slowly towards a predictable climax that you wonder if there was even an editor involved.
On the plus side, the protagonists are good-looking A-list Hollywood celebrities who can act and know how to show off a superhero outfit, so no-one is terrible, but it is very hard to care about anyone enough to invest greatly in what happens, especially as they all seem indestructible. For me, such interest as there was came from some decent one-line jokes, a convincing performance from Daniel Bruhl (fast becoming one of my favourite actors) and a bizarre cameo from Martin Freeman, who is everywhere these days and here re-deploys another odd US accent for no apparent reason. I also rather liked Vision’s look, but doubt if I could get away with it at work.
Having enjoyed the first Iron Man film quite a bit, I am inclined to think that the Tony Stark character is overexposed now and could do with a rest, much as I like Robert Downey Jr.
Finally, take careful note of the A in 12A. If ever it was appropriate it is here, for numerous instances of explicit killing and some disturbing dialogue. I would have rated the film 15. Parents be warned.