Marvel have allowed some lucky viewers to watch early showings of Captain America: Civil War, and the first reactions are out! In a Week of Marvels special, I want to look at some of the trends:
1. It’s impossible not to compare Captain America: Civil War to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Let’s face it, we already knew that fans would be drawing comparisons between Captain America: Civil War and Batman v Superman. Both are huge action set-pieces, bringing heroes into collision; both have themes exploring the damage superhero battles can do. Perhaps this was the most interesting comment:
That word ‘fun’ is the most common word being used to contrast the two films. That was entirely predictable; one of the most common criticisms of Batman v Superman was that the film just didn’t have a sense of fun to it, that it was too dense in its symbolism.
It’s worth noting that the plot is getting some criticism, just as Batman v Superman‘s does; there’s a lot going on in this movie, possibly too much. Another pretty universal comment, though, is that we genuinely care about the action because we genuinely care about the characters. Holding their Avenger-v-Avenger brawl back was clearly a smart move on Marvel’s part.
That said, the film others are comparing this to is Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It doesn’t come out as favourably in that comparison.
2. The airport fight scene is a highlight of the film
According to popular reactions, we’ve seen less than 1% of the airport fight scene. This is getting some serious praise:
The only problem is, some of the comments have suggested this is too good – it dominates the film, standing out above the rest of the movie, and leaving the end feeling a tad anticlimatic.
3. Although full of action, the movie has real emotional depth
Yes, this is a superhero-on-superhero slugfest, with Avengers taking on their allies. That said, it’s also a film that seems to rejoice in its heart.
4. Tom Holland’s Spider-Man is particularly praiseworthy
We already had hints that Spider-Man would play a bigger role in the film than we’d perhaps been expecting. Fan reaction is hugely positive.
Now, that comment actually concerns me a little; however good Tom Holland may be as Spider-Man, it sounds as though he’s been inserted into a plot that doesn’t really need him. I prefer tight plotting, so it may well be that my reaction isn’t quite so positive.
5. Sadly, Baron Zemo isn’t great as a villain
It’s immediately notable that Daniel Bruhl’s villain isn’t getting many comments. The few he’s getting suggest that Marvel have yet to resolve their ‘villain problem’: