Captain America Civil War (2016) – By Joz Norris

21st May 2016

Captain America Civil War

Went to see Captain America: Civil War today. I’ve not seen any of the other Marvel films. As such, it’s one of the most incomprehensible films I’ve ever seen, with the least likeable lead ever. Here is what happens (with spoilers):

Captain America is a sort of horrid, selfish ninja who is on holiday in Africa with his friends Hermione Granger, Motorbike Girl and Wingman, who is literally his wingman. They bump into a sort of bad man who is up to something, but it’s not explained what, but we know he’s bad because he has facial scarring. The scarred man says he got the scars because Captain America dropped a house on him, which sounds very irresponsible and doesn’t help Captain America’s hero credentials in my book. Captain America beats the crap out of this severely traumatised and possibly disabled man, then Hermione Granger blows up a building full of African delegates. As a side-note, literally every character who becomes a victim of collateral damage in this film is black, but I don’t know if we’re supposed to read into that.

A lovely, perfectly reasonable politician man with a nice moustache who you’d want as your uncle asks Captain America if he and his friends can stop killing everybody, which seems fair enough but Captain America throws a hissy fit and says that’s totally unfair and throws all his toys out the pram, even though his hilarious and charismatic friend from the I Want Love music video and Ally McBeal says to stop being silly. Captain America goes to the funeral of his girlfriend, who is an old woman, apparently because of some sort of backstory I’m not clear on. I think Captain America ages backwards or something, like Benjamin Button. Anyway, it’s ok that his girlfriend is dead because she was gross and old, so now he can make out with her hot niece, which he does. Motorbike Girl goes to visit the UN, where a nice African king gets blown up. CCTV footage emerges to show that he was blown up by Captain America’s mate, who is called John or something. If I saw CCTV footage of my friend John blowing up an African king, I’d probably delete him off Facebook, but Captain America is all like “No, he’s a totally great guy, leave him alone.” If we weren’t already judging him by his actions, now we can judge him by the company he keeps. Captain America goes to visit John and is all like “Haterz gonna hate, John, you keep doing what you do best,” then the police turn up and they kill them all. Oh, I haven’t mentioned that Captain America fights people with a huge metal shield, which looks ridiculous and is probably much more dangerous than just using a stick or something. I think he gets kicks out of hurting people.

Anyway, Captain America and John and Wingman run off, and are chased by a man dressed like a cat. They can all run faster than speeding cars, but that’s not really explained. Tim from the Office shows up and goes “Stop it! Stop it!” then we don’t really see him again. It turns out the cat guy was the African prince, as his superhero alter-ego Prince Cat. 80% of the characters in the film have superhero alter-egos, even though statistically that’s not how the world works. John’s in prison now, and a shifty man in glasses turns up and says some words that make John absolutely furious and kill everyone. Captain America is still going “No, John’s a good guy, he wouldn’t kill anyone” even though he just saw him do that, and they all run off. The nice moustache politician man is upset because they’re all killing everyone when he asked them not to, and the Ally McBeal guy says he’ll help catch Captain America, because it turns out he is also a superhero called Mr Robot.

Oh, during all this there’s some sort of weird subplot where a ghost with a tomato head tries to seduce Hermione by cooking her dinner, but that bit was just confusing and I don’t know what was going on. Captain America gets a sort of Medieval peasant man to rescue Hermione with a bow and arrow, even though she doesn’t want to be rescued. Captain America’s all like “Come with me and help me break the law and endanger your life” and the peasant bow and arrow man and Hermione think that’s a great idea, even though the bow and arrow man has a wife and kids. Captain America is very selfish.

Mr Robot is so desperate for help he has to visit a completely different set of films to ask Spider-Man to help him. Captain America goes one better and calls in a celebrity cameo from Paul Rudd. Mr Robot says to stop being so selfish and “knock it off” but instead they all have a big fight. For an idea of what this fight looks like, try watching any other superhero film, it is similar to the fights in those ones. Paul Rudd can shrink and grow even though he hasn’t done that in any of his other movies or in F.R.I.E.N.D.S. Spider-Man is kind of fun, I guess. Anyway, Captain America gets on a plane and flies away, revealing that the entire fight served no dramatic purpose, much like most fight scenes. Just to trick us into thinking it DID have a dramatic purpose, the tomato ghost man shoots Don Cheadle, whose superhero alter-ego is a sort of olden-days black and white version of Mr Robot. Mr Robot is very sad that Don Cheadle has broken his spine, but then his robot suit tells him John DIDN’T blow up the African king, it was the shifty glasses guy. Mr Robot says “Oh, well that means all the death, grievous bodily harm and destruction of property that Captain America and John have caused is totally fine because they were doing it for the right reasons, and as everybody knows, a horrifically violent, criminal action committed for a good reason is heroic,” and I think that’s a direct quote from the film.

Captain America and John and Mr Robot go to the North Pole, where the shifty glasses guy reveals his nebulous plan. They watch some CCTV footage of John killing Mr Robot’s mum and dad in a deserted wood, so deserted it has a CCTV camera in it right by where the drive-by shooting randomly happens. Mr Robot lets his anger get the better of him, but I’d be pretty cross if my mum and dad were dead, so fair enough. If I found out my mate John DIDN’T blow up an African king, but DID kill my other friend’s mum and dad in a wood, I’d probably say something like “Oh, for God’s sake, John! Out of the frying pan and into the fire!” but Captain America is all like “Yeah, let’s kill Mr Robot now, the big stupid orphan,” and bashes the crap out of him with his stupid shield, then wanders off. Mr Robot tells him his dad made his shield – so it wasn’t even his shield, he stole it! – and then goes home. Prince Cat arrests the glasses man, and Tim from the Office goes “Aha, not so smart now, are you?” and the glasses man says “Yes I am!” and that’s genuinely the end of his arc.

Captain America goes to visit his friends, who he coerced into helping him break the law and endanger lots of people’s lives in an airport, and breaks them out of prison. I think he expects them to join him as a sort of Robin Hood and his Merry Men band of outlaws. If I were Wingman or Hermione I’d say “Go shove it up your arse, Captain America. This is all your fault and now, rather than patting yourself on the back and acting the noble hero sticking up for the little guy, maybe you should take a long, hard look in the mirror and think about how sometimes, maybe rules are there for a reason, you bumhole,” but I guess that wouldn’t be a very good last line.

Then there’s a post-credits scene where Thanos checks Google Analytics to see if anybody’s been on his website.

Written by Joz Norris