Film: “Captain America: Civil War” (Hindi); Directors: Anthony and Joe Russo; Cast: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johanssen, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Olsen; Rating: **½
There is something you should know. There is something seriously wrong with the world we live in. I am not saying it. The super heroes of the Marvel kingdom are. And they can’t be wrong. After all, they have the capability to save the world, as we know it, from self-destruction.
Lately, the super hero films have begun to groan under the weight of carrying the burden of the ruinous world on their strapping shoulders. The last big super hero film “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” was so dense in its plotting proclivities that no one in the world fully comprehended the full force of the fanatically niche-oriented proceedings.
To its credit — and to our relief — the hijinks of the super heroes is far easier to follow in “Captain America: Civil War”. Some of them, like the new callow Spiderman(Tom Holland), are fun to watch. But I am afraid the fun element seems to be rapidly dwindling from the super hero franchise.
Even the ravishing Sacrlett Johansson’s Black Widow looks distracted, as though she has other worlds to save once done with this one.
Here’s what is going wrong with the Marvel movies. The blood of humanism is being drained out and replaced by the furious flow of virtual adrenaline. These are not men and women who care for individuals. Too busy saving civilisation from catastrophe, they end up behaving like automatons on speed.
The plot is so layered it seems to be constructed in a beehive. At some point or the other, every super hero is at loggerheads with one of his or her colleagues. Iron Man(Robert Downey Jr. ) and Captain America (Chris Evans), though on the same side, are this time ideologically opposed and trendily polarised. It is no longer enough to have the super heroes battling the Evil Force. That comes later. Intricate internecine wars are worked out by the super brains who supervise the super flicks about the super heroes.
It’s done to super-impress the hypnotised breed of humanity known as the Marvel maniacs. For the rest of civilisation, Captain America is one long exercise in self-pleasuring eruptions. Barring the Black American actor Chadwick Boseman who plays the bereaved prince of an African nation joining forces with the Avengers, the emphatically expressionless actors don’t seem to be having much fun doing what super heroes are supposed to do. Save the world, silly!
Clearly, Captain America misses the wood for the trees, or the fun for the apocalypse. By the time the climax has all the super heroes lining up against the villain (played by Sebastian Stan, looking more a rock star than a super-villain, frazzled than dazzled) the crammed canvas resembles the prized bookshelf in a little boy’s room with all the super hero figures lined up for a battle, that no one is supposed to touch, particularly not grown-ups.
There is one more super hero film about the masked and unmasked saviours of the universe waiting to erupt on our saturated senses. Alas, “Captain America: Civil War” is not that film.
The dubbing in Hindi is fair to farcical. Varun Dhawan’s Captain America is frugally heard. This is a man of few words.