Top critical review
I tried twice...
Reviewed in the United States on October 21, 2018
(Side note: I did NOT purchase this movie, though I did pay a couple bucks to rent it on Amazon. I assume that's where the "Verified Purchase" label comes from. But I do not consider myself qualified to identify this review as a "Verified Purchase," and if I can remove that label I'd love to know how.)
Twice I tried to watch this movie. It is not a bad movie. I can absolutely see why it gets the praise it does.
But I could not stomach two hours of that obnoxious Gary Stu Steve Rogers. Right from the start, he jeopardizes the lives of 20-30 hostages, to prove to one insignificant henchman that he can win a fight without his shield and helmet. It two one taunt from this nobody to get Steve to do that. Steve then chews out Black Widow for "jeopardizing the mission" because she stopped to collect intel on the enemy, and then tantrums to Nick Fury over the fact that commanding officers are not required to immediately share all info with the glorious Steve Rogers right away. Sure, all the *other* soldiers have to accept the chain of command, but he is not some peasant, he's Captain ****ing America!
This blatant hypocrisy and entitlement is never addressed (at least in the half of the movie I managed to watch). Instead, the movie rewards Steve's asinine attitude, by warping the universe to prove all of his opinions "right." Steve and Nick disagree about security. The day of the argument, the security turns out to be a giant plot by Hydra to conquer the world. See what happens when you disagree with Gary Stu?
This would be obnoxious enough for any character, but in *Marvel,* which usually specializes in well-drawn, flawed characters who are forced to confront their own flaws, it's particularly irritating and distracting. Especially when it's centered on the character who we are supposed to see as the "pure" team leader, the genuine "hero" to Black Widow, Tony Stark and Nick Fury's "antiheroes."
All other characters were very likable, which is why I made two attempts to watch this. Nick Fury, Black Widow, Falcon, Maria Hill, and Bucky--god, poor Bucky--I wanted to see the movie for those characters. But seeing this movie's version of Steve Rogers was starting to become hazardous to my mental health, so I had to stop.
I shouldn't be writing this review at all, as I've been trying to avoid anything Captain America related. To be clear, I like him just fine in his first movie and the first "Avengers" film from 2012. But here and in "Civil War," all I see is Edward Cullen with a shield. When I want a pure, idealistic hero from Marvel, I'll watch "Black Panther," "Thor" or "Spiderman: Homecoming." Those guys, unlike Steve, are forced to actually earn their reputations, both in-universe and from the audience.