Admittedly, I was skeptical when Marvel announced that the third Captain America film would be called Captain America: Civil War. I didn’t think they were ready yet for that kind of world-consuming conflict. They had only just laid the groundwork for the team. Then, they put the pieces into place and knocked over the dominoes to create such a glorious image.

The Review

Wow. Where do I even begin? I’m going to try and keep this as spoiler-free as possible. Let’s start up with a quick recap.

Last we saw the gang all together, Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) had roped Bruce Banner/Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) into assisting him with the accidental creation of a murder bot. Dealing with Ultron (James Spader) in Sokovia resulted in a great deal of property damage and many deaths. Adding that to the number of lives lost, homes destroyed, and resources dispatched during other Avengers-related mishaps is apparently growing to be too much for the world to feel entirely comfortable with letting them operate unsupervised.

The film begins with a mission that goes a little awry and kicks off the drama that drives the rest of the story. As a result, the Avengers are asked to sign the Sokovia Accords. They would cease being able to operate independently and would instead be put under the control of the UN. They would be told when to intervene and when to stay their hands. Needless to say, the Accords don’t sit well with Steve Rogers/Captain America (Chris Evans) and he refuses to sign them. Then, an unthinkable attack takes place and Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) is implicated.

If we’ve learned anything from the films before this, no one gets between Steve and his Bucky, not even new and dear friends.

Once staunch allies and friends, the Avengers find themselves on opposite sides of this ideological debate.

While one can certainly choose sides here (I’m Team Cap, by the way), I have to credit the writing team and directors for ultimately making choosing a side more of a challenge. You can see where Tony is coming from and understand his point of view. At the same time, you know what Steve Rogers stands for and why he acts the way he does. On top of that, every actor puts in amazing performances throughout the film. There is just so much that is done so well in this movie that it’s difficult to really pinpoint what made this movie so magical.

There was plenty of drama and angst between all of the involved players, but the movie still made time for humor. The dialogue was witty and not overwrought. It flowed well and all of the characterization for everyone felt pitch perfect. This was the kind of movie for which the fans were longing and Marvel delivered.

Ultimately, Captain America: Civil War is one of the best movies that Marvel has released to date. It’s certainly in the top three in my estimation. Marvel made the best decision to put the Russo brothers in charge of this film and the subsequent Avengers movies. It’s going to be so great to see how things develop as this phase of their universe unfolds. While there may be missteps along the way, I’m certainly looking forward to seeing where things go from here.

Final Thoughts

As always, here be spoilers.

There is very little I can find fault with in the film. I loved so much about it. I even loved the introduction of Spider-Man (Tom Holland) into the MCU, much as I am getting a little tired of the character himself. I mean, seriously, how many Spider-man movies have we gotten before there’s been a single female-led superhero movie? Speaking of the women, Kevin Feige has finally deigned to commit to a Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) film. It’s about damn time. She’s been doing so much of the emotional labor in the movies without getting any credit for her efforts.

Thanks to this movie, I am incredibly excited about seeing the upcoming Black Panther movie in early 2018. Chadwick Boseman was amazing as T’Challa, King of Wakanda and bearer of the mantle of Black Panther, and I was incredibly impressed with his performance. He did so much in the time he had on the screen.

Before the film’s release, fans were promised a kiss in the movie. While we had hopes that maybe the kiss would push some boundaries, it was, to the surprise of no one, between Steve and Agent 13 aka Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp), niece of his old flame. Me? I’m always up for a little romance in the movie, but I ultimately felt that the kiss was unnecessary. My parents and I disagreed about that over the dinner table, but that’s neither here nor there.

Now, the romance I was into was the budding one between Wanda/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany). He cooked for her! He got distracted by her! He got confused by his feelings! I loved every bit of seeing that on the screen. It was so damn adorable. That is going to be entertaining to watch develop.

I loved every moment of this movie and I can’t wait to watch the Blu-ray repeatedly when it’s released. I’m having feels all over again. It was just so damn good.