Monday, April 14, 2014

Why I didn't like "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"

First of all, Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a great movie. It was fun to watch. Don't take this as me saying it wasn't a good super hero movie, and, from what I hear, better than the first Captain America movie.

OK so now why I didn't like it (contains spoilers, FYI):
1. Throw any kind of science out the window when considering this movie
They have a bird-man. Falcon, as he is called, is a retired air force "flyer" who has mechanical bird wings. Biological research into birds and physics knowledge of gravity etc. have shown this to be impossible. Also, they have the brain of a dead German scientist stored on 1950s computer technology. We can't do that now, on today's technology (we do have Watson, but he doesn't have a personality/memories like this computer did). Also Captain America's shield can dent cars and cut into metal and break bullet proof glass, but doesn't hurt his hands when he catches it midair. I can totally understand some super hero things just happen, but no one, not even Captain America, is indestructible.

2. Throw any knowledge about how anything in the government works out the window
That bird man I mentioned? He has classified documents just sitting around in his apartment, and the government knows he has them and doesn't come after him. Also an armored car can make secure phone calls? Also directors can voice over-ride anything? (that's WAY unsafe, I just saw a presentation on how bad voice recognition actually is at securing things).

3. Death has no meaning
Nick Fury dies in front of our eyes. We watch the doctor declare his time of death and see Black Widow standing over his dead body. He gives Capt. America a final mission before his death - oh wait, no, just kidding. He's not dead. He's conveniently alive, having faked his own death with the help of Agent Hill (the lovely Colbie Smoulders!!) Also, we WATCH Agent Hill give the computer command to destroy the helipad that Capt. America is on - and yet he survives that to have a final showdown with the Winter Soldier. Who throws him in the ocean. Only for him to survive that and get dragged (bleeding) onto a beach, where he should have died but doesn't. Also Black Widow activates the armed bio-pin on her chest (that killed all other council members) and yet doesn't die. My good friend Bethanie pointed out that movies and TV shows are becoming like cartoon shows - her example is Tom and Jerry, the cat and mouse show. Tom and Jerry mutilate and kill each other over and over, only to pop up again and pull another funny prank. Death means nothing for them, and means nothing in this movie.

4. It's OK to torture mentally ill people to turn them into weapons
The Winter Soldier is a military prisoner from WWII who, like Capt. America, was frozen to keep him young. However, unlike Captain America, he has been genetically engineered to be a killing machine. His brain has been "wiped' multiple times through electro-shock therapy, which has made him slightly insane. At the end of the film, there's a teaser sequence for the future with two teenagers locked in cages. They have super powers (that they seem to have been born with) and are also being tortured and oppressed. Not OK. Even in a false universe where being mentally unstable might mean super powers, treating them like something less than human made my skin crawl.

5. Hail Hydra
I can't describe how creepy I found the whole Hydra thing to be. It was one thing when it was Nazi Germany, but to update it to modern day and have the governing secretary of defense be a part of it was too much for me. That was a terrible time in our global history, and to make light of it gives me the creeps. The memes going around the internet of various popular characters saying "Hail Hydra" scare me, because people seem to be de-sensitizing themselves to that part of history. I know none of the people joking about it would say they are de-sensitizing themselves, but they are. I drive by the Holocaust memorial all the time, and I just can't bring myself to find that saying at all funny.

So that's why I didn't like Captain America: The Winter Soldier. I needed to just dump all that feeling onto a page (I saw it late last night). It won't make sense if you didn't see the movie and still might not make sense if you have, but the negative emotions are there. I don't usually go for the "PluggedIn" reviews, but the conclusion to this one is good and sums up some of what  I am feeling, though not all of it:

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