Thursday, May 19, 2016

Team Iron Man

You should know, before even going into my review of Civil War, which side I'm on.  Tony and I go way back.  It's a matter of loyalty at this point.  And of stubbornness.  So while I'm in the minority, I know which side I'm on.  But enough about me, on to the bullet points!

By the time this post will be published, I will have seen Captain America:  Civil War twice, and naturally, I have thoughts about that.  Here they are in some semblance of an order:
  • They wrote Pepper out of another film.  I realize it's not her movie (it's not even Tony's movie!), but it still feels like a bit of a cop-out.
  • Who else was completely and utterly weirded out by the CGI "young" Robert Downey, Jr.?!?  I was so distracted by his face during that scene I almost missed what was happening.
    • Civil War says this "memory" is 1991, the year the Starks died.  The flashback at the opening of Iron Man 3 (when they're in Switzerland) is in 1999.  I think they may have turned the Way Back Machine back too far for 1991's RDJ.
  • Sokovia?  Really?  His whole deal is "just" about Sokovia?  A friend asked me if rewatching The Winter Soldier would be helpful for this movie, and I said, "As long as you remember who Bucky/Winter Soldier is, you're fine.  In fact, rewatching Age of Ultron would be just as if not more helpful."  And I stand by that.  Because there's a lot more that has to do with Sokovia than anything else (in my opinion).
    • But Zemo's whole modus operandi did feel a little lacking to me.  This theory helped to allay some of that.  (CONTAINS MAJOR SPOILERS)
    • After my second viewing, I've realized that the above theory is incorrect in one major point:  there are bullet holes in the glass of at least four of the five "containers" (fifth container was not shown close on screen to check).
  • Speaking of MacGuffins, what about Crossbones?  Has anyone addressed this yet?  He was only there so the Avengers could cause some (accidental) mass destruction as a final catalyst to the Sokovia Accords.  We never really saw why he was doing it (except Cap "dropped a building" on his face), we did not know what biological weapon he was stealing (or why), and then he was dead before we could even really care.
  • Hello Black Panther!  Leonard loves her some cats, no matter the size.  What I appreciated most about Chadwick Boseman's portrayal is that they managed to make him look both feline and masculine.  We often associate cats with femininity (see:  Freud, literary theories, and DC's Batman), but I felt they managed to make him look, act, and move masculine and cat-like and, of course, bad-ass. 
    "Dude shows up dressed like a cat, and you don't wanna know more?"
  • Speaking of His Catness, what's his deal?  His suit is bullet-proof (possibly made of vibranium), but does he also have super powers?  Or is he just really athletic?  See my list below.
  • The airport fight scene, the one that everyone (Leonard included) lost their shit over in the trailers -- yes, THAT one,...felt a bit stiff and contrived for me at first.  It didn't feel like "THE" fight.  Thankfully Wanda addressed my issue (to Hawkeye):  "You're pulling your punches."  Of course it felt a bit stifled -- no one wanted to actually hurt their friends!  They're holding back, and I could tell.  As soon as that became clear, I felt better.  Even after Wanda's moment, they still (mostly) held back.  And I was glad; they're my friends, too, and I don't want to see any of them get hurt.
  • Spider-Man:  let's address address the Spider in the room.  Everyone (except Leonard) also lost their collective shit over seeing the Spiderling in the trailers.  I said it then and I'll say it now:  he sounds (and looks!) like he's twelve!  It's hard for me to take him seriously (or even like someone who has at least gone through puberty) with his li'l pumpkin face and giant awkward ears.  Yes, his lines were funny, but his intro scene with Tony was, well,...weird.  The timing of their dialogue was off, and not in that "this should be awkward" way; in a "this is awkward because we actors haven't been given proper direction" way.
  • Black Widow's hair was getting dangerously close to the "too fussy" zone in this film; in the mean time, ScarJo is doing her best Farrah Fawcett impression while kicking ass and taking names.
  • Holy Beefcake, Batman!  You know what I'm talking about: 
    Look at my guuuuuuuns!
    This was almost too much, when he switched his grip and we got the bicep pose and the manly grunting face.  There was a fair amount of beefcake in this film compared to the others, and I'm okay with that.  Similarly there was a lot less cheesecake (did you see Black Widow wearing pants, boots, and a COAT in the opening fight scene??), and I'm also okay with that.  Turn about is fair play, fellas.  It's your turn to be objectified for once.
  • Lots of fun lines, too many to quote, really.  Pick your own!
  • I thought the film did a really good job showing the points of both sides of the major argument.  Which is why this is STILL VERY UPSETTING!!! 
    2 against 1 isn't fair, people!
Having seen the movie twice in the theaters, I think I've memorized the lines I like and can now happily wait for it on DVD.  It has also inspired this spreadsheet of superheroes:

Black Panther
Probably some military
3 of 5 asses to kick
War Machine
3.5 asses to kick
Iron Man
Not really
Genius playboy billionaire philanthropist
Bucky/Winter Soldier
Yes (well, an arm’s worth)
Military & general brainwashing
4 of 5 asses to kick
Black Widow
Lots of military/assassin
ALL the asses to kick!
Captain America
Beefy arms.  And legs.  And chest.
Nearly Indestructible
Does having Jarvis in your make-up count?
Synthetic, Infinity Stone, Change Density at any time
Scarlet Witch
“she’s weird” and can apparently bend reality
Glass Cannon*
Scaling walls, shooting webbing, enhanced sensory all around
Ask me again after he hits puberty.
“Bird costume?  That’s cold.”
Ant Man
Just Thieving Stuff
Not the first I’d call unless I just wanted funny stuff
Pretty bad-ass for someone so vulnerable
Asgardian Military
Giant hammer, lightning & thunder
Very little Asgardian Military
Staff with Infinity Stone, glamours
So very pretty
ANGRY (and giant)

*My friend Casey explained this term:  can hit superhard ("cannon"), y'know, like take down friggin' Vision!  But is also fragile, will down from one punch from Cap ("glass")

**Not pictured in this film

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