Movie Review: Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

captain_america__the_winter_soldier___movie_poster_by_justhunt-d5v6auaAnthony and Joe Russo’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier (B+) wisely eschews CGI-heavy creature effects for French Connection-style shoot-em-up combat and cat-and-mouse brinkmanship. The formerly frozen super soldier played by Chris Evans owns his shield-wielding role this time around as a morally grounded hero amidst specters of villainy, greed and terrorism. Scarlett Johannson is a game sidekick with the film’s rare comic relief lines as Black Widow, and Anthony Mackie is a welcome addition as a friend from the VA hospital who joins the team’s mission and becomes the first African-American Marvel superhero, The Falcon. Robert Redford and Samuel L. Jackson also get some commanding moments as S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters execs. Despite some overlong fight sequences, this sequel is uniformly solid and earns its distinctive badge of honor. After diminishing artistic returns with the latest Iron Man and Thor movies, this Captain continues the top-flight spectacle achieved with The Avengers.