The reviews for Captain America: Civil War are in, and it appears Cap and Tony’s feud makes for a fantastic, watchable Marvel film. So far, critics suggest Captain America is a believable leader, even if Chris Evans’s performance is lacking. Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) fades into the background in a few scenes, and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) provides a necessary, steady stream of comedic relief.
These glowing reviews describe a movie that’s both emotionally effective and filled with action. We’ve prepared a list of spoiler-free critic reactions which, honestly, have us psyched.
Devin Faraci at Birth.Movies.Death busted right out of the gate and proclaimed, “Captain America: Civil War isn’t just a great Marvel movie, it’s a great movie.”
He went on to gush:
Besides all of the gymnastics the Russos are doing in Civil War - servicing the arcs of a dozen players (and EVERY Avenger gets an arc), creating thrilling action sequences, setting up new characters for their own movies, laying the groundwork for Infinity War - they also manage to create a central conflict in which both men are right. By the end of the movie, by that nasty, harsh final fight, that conflict has transcended the ideological and become emotional in unexpected ways, but you still have the same feeling: both of these guys are right. And you would like for them to stop fighting now, please. But, as The Winter Soldier wearily intones at one point, “It always ends in a fight.”
Screencrush voiced the same enthusiasm, writing,
Marvel has arrived with Captain America: Civil War, the latest in their progressively expanding franchise, with a lineup that includes 12 superheroes and three villains. Have we reached peak superhero? Is this finally, once and for all, just too much? NOPE.
Read More: at ScreenCrush
Over at IGN, Jim Vejvoda writes,
Hands down, Spider-Man is the best thing in this movie. He not only steals Cap’s shield, he pretty much steals his movie, too. Now for what you don’t want to hear: Spidey is also completely expendable to this story. He could be cut out of it without making any difference to the narrative whatsoever. Nevertheless, actor Tom Holland captures what makes Peter Parker such a sweet, great hero and leaves the audience wanting more. And after five big screen appearances so far, Holland’s is the closest and arguably best approximation of the comic book character yet.
From Empire, critic Dan Jolin says:
>Captain America: Civil War is the best Marvel Studios movie yet. There, we said it. First, and most importantly, it does what the best Marvel films do: juggling multiple characters so each is allowed its moment in a story that pushes forward the series’ overall continuity, while also forming and concluding its own cogent plot.
USA Today was slightly less enthused:
Between the political issues, explosive battles and a nefarious plot by new villain-on-the-scene Helmut Zemo (Daniel Brühl), Civil War is overflowing with story. It’s a gold mine for Marvel nerds that may be dizzying for the rest.
The Hollywood Reporter said Hawkeye barely registered as a character, and that Ant-Man was a welcome comedic presence among the Avengers. Sheri Linden noted:
Reflecting the material’s comic-book roots, the Russos keep the film’s action heavy on physics- and biology-defying thwacks and slams, with almost no blood, although there is a crucial injury late in the proceedings. Amid the mayhem, the movie doesn’t necessarily feel overloaded with Avengers, but some personalities get to shine more than others.
Justin Chang of Variety didn’t call Civil War a game-changer, but insisted that the film was a successful next step for Marvel’s cinematic universe.
This chronicle of an epic clash between two equally noble factions, led by Captain America and Iron Man, proves as remarkable for its dramatic coherence and thematic unity as for its dizzyingly inventive action sequences; viewers who have grown weary of seeing cities blow up ad nauseam will scarcely believe their luck at the relative restraint and ingenuity on display.
Chang went on to say:
This clean-burning cinematic engine may qualify as a peak Marvel experience, but it isn’t a transcendent one; transcendence simply doesn’t factor into the calculations of a franchise dedicated more to its long-term survival strategy than to the quality of any individual chapter. “Captain America: Civil War” doesn’t break the mold; it burnishes the brand, and sets a high but not insurmountable bar. Let the games continue.
The Wrap said:
These enhanced humans are still human and have relationships with one another that exist beyond the boundaries of global crisis. Given permission to be more than objects resisting other objects against a green screen, the cast members give themselves to each other, their screen clan generously expanding to include newer characters like Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen). And Evans’ performance — it’s his character’s film, after all — is the center; his story line is the one most beset by internal conflict, and his empathy for the torn loyalties of Cap is moving in ways that don’t derail the action’s urgency or pull focus from the otherwise ensemble nature of the larger project.
Comicbook.com praised the film’s emotional resonance, saying:
The emotional beats never missed. There are moments that will have audiences audibly gasping. There are themes of friendship, love, heartbreak, and fear, which are blended seamlessly.
The reviewer also added:
The airport battle scene teased in the trailers could be watched on a loop for three hours and still be worth the price of admission.
Do you have goosebumps yet? We sure as hell do.
Captain America: Civil War hits theaters on May 6.