Monday, July 25, 2011
A SALUTE TO CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER
After this past weekend, I hope everyone has caught Cap fever!
Yes, I watched the new Cap movie, Captain America: The First Avenger over the weekend and it’s now my favorite Marvel movie! This is the movie I’ve been waiting to see ever since me and my nerdy college pals used to waste hours discussing how a Cap movie should be made. All of us agreed it should take place in World War II and Joe Johnston should direct. Yep, we predicted Johnston would direct Cap almost twenty years before he really did. All of us were razzmatazzed by his movie The Rocketeer and so he was the obvious pick. Of course we missed on the actor who would wear the red, white and blue. Hey, Chris Evans was only ten years old back then. I voted for John Wesley Shipp from the 1990 TV show The Flash. I remember one friend lobbied for football player Howie Long to play Cap.
Captain America: The First Avenger wasn’t exactly the movie I dreamed of, but it came very close. The movie does a good job capturing the schmaltzy spirit of the movie serial adventures from the 1930s and 40‘s. What it lacks in emotion, it makes up for with plenty of action and style. It’s simply a popcorn movie, with extra butter! I did wish for more character development with the secondary characters. We didn’t get to know Bucky and the Howlers as well as we should have. (Ok Marvel, you now need to make the spin-off movie The Howling Commandos!) My favorite scenes were the USO stuff and my new favorite song is Star Spangled Man.
The USO montage was brilliant and I hope and pray we see a few chapters of their version of the Captain America movie serial on the DVD. Finally, it’s good to have a super hero on the screen that’s not filled with angst and rage, but instead is filled with courage and loyalty.
I saw the movie with family and friends including one of my college buddies who was in on the Cap movie discussion twenty years ago. (Hey Mike!) The big thrill of the night was that my seven year old nephew surprised me with this awesome replica of Cap’s shield using a paper plate.
He made it especially for me after we saw the movie. I own and have owned many great collectibles, but this shield is now one of my favorite possessions.
For fun, I’ve included two Cap sketches I got from two excellent artists. The first is from the great George Tuska with his unique ruffled feathers on Cap’s cowl.
The second one is a fantastic Cap sketch from John Beatty!
Let’s finish this post with a fake photobooth photo of Cap.
I made this a few months ago in anticipation of the new film using the flag background from a photobooth photo that can be seen here. After seeing the film I would like to redo it using the more appropriate USO costume instead. Maybe when I find a better scan I’ll take a stab at it.
Now go see Cap and have fun rooting for the good guys! Be sure to watch all the credits for the swell propaganda poster art and something special at the end.