Starring: Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Tommy Lee Jones ?12A | 124mins
One of this film’s redeeming features is the plush recreation of the outfits and cityscapes of the Second World War, but it also enhances the sense that Captain America is stuck playing catch-up – the bar has been raised on comic book adaptations and this kind of lightweight cartoonery no longer cuts the mustard.
Lack of ambition infuses every frame and it starts with Captain America himself.
A runt who volunteers for a military experiment, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) finds he is now stronger and can run faster. Is that all?
The baddie, a rogue Nazi scientist, Red Skull (Hugo Weaving), gets hold of a special blue box with cosmic powers.
Or something. It’s never really explained. ?But even though he now has access to “the power of the Gods”, the most this arch-villain can manage is a small private army with snazzy guns.
At a time when ?the US was planning to nuke the shit out of Japan, this is pretty weak.
There are lots of explosions, shoot-outs and fistfights with Nazis – there’s even a montage that combines all three – but Captain America never lights up. Instead it feels like watching someone else play a video game version of Raiders Of The Lost Ark. And Evans must be one of the most wooden leading men around; in most scenes, he is out-acted by his jawline.
Early on, Captain America is wheeled out around America as a propaganda tool, beating up a moustachioed pantomime Hitler on stage. Unfortunately, these scenes echo the film’s routine, repetitive approach – we’ve seen it all before.
Good for: People with low expectations who are determined to like it