Title: Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Release Date: April 4, 2014
Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Production Company: Marvel Studios
This is the second Captain America movie and the ninth in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The MCU works best when it adapts it’s superhero movies to different genres, and this one attempts a political conspiracy thriller, as Steve Rogers and his cohort uncover Hydra’s long-term plot to infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D. With one of the more streamlined casts in the MCU oeuvre ,Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury get a whole lot more screentime, and thus more interesting things to do with their characters. This movie also introduces Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson / Falcon, an interesting character who in retrospect doesn’t get enough attention in the following movies. Sebastian Stan returns as the Winter Soldier (aka brainwashed Bucky Barnes) and doesn’t do much more than shoot and punch, but it does give a background to Bucky’s role in future movies. The plot of this movie is well done, but there’s a lot more firing machine guns and blowing stuff up than I find interesting. More isn’t always better even in an action movie, but the Russos have a workman-like approach that lacks the artistry of some other MCU directors.