Finals: Captain America: The Winter Soldier v Captain America: The First Avenger


Finals: Captain America: The Winter Soldier v Captain America: The First Avenger  

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Winter Soldier is much more substantial, but it personally doesn't appeal to me as much as The First Avenger did. I'm happy with either winning, though I'm fairly sure how this poll will go.

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4 hours ago, slothian said:

The First Avenger has a proper villain, a wartime aesthetic and that ditty.

Yup. Winter Soldier is a worth runner up as a great movie but it starts the Cap x Buck angle that spoiled Cap 3/a lot of Phases 2&3 for me. 

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Once Cap becomes proper CAP, the film looses its grip on its focus. His wartime career is sped up in a montage, which is odd because it’s not as though the mainstream moviegoing audience was super aware of Captain America fighting in WWII in 2011. 

I really enjoy First Avenger, but the second half is a little too pleased with itself in how it speeds towards its end. Especially after Bucky “dies”.
 

Winter Solider has more surprises, more compelling characters, way better action, heightened suspense, and balances everything while developing Cap as a character. 

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They're both great. But Winter Soldier is a really good film. You can't say the same about First Avenger. It's patchy, weirdly paced and a little goofy. I still love it. But Winter Soldier is the best thing the MCU has come up with.

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Having rewatched The First Avenger< i stick with it being a top-tier MCU film, but a lot of the issues I had with it the first time are still present. And some new quibbles popped up.

My main issue then, and still now, is we see so very little of Steve and the Commandos on the World War II battlefield. One minute he's Steve, then he's action man, then he's singing man, then he goes AWOL to save his buddy, then it's a massive (though cool) montage, then he's Captain America punching Red Skull into oblivion. The pacing isn't as smooth as it could and should be.

Conversely, Winter Soldier is tight from the jump. The only two minor issues I have with it are Widow leaving the device in the vending machine, and the disguise tech comes out of nowhere. That needed some setting up.

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I think the tech is a fair point, but as a comic fan I dug that. It does come out of nowhere, but it also feels very Marvel Comics to me. It's like the detail of Fury having a flying car, but the propulsion system is busted after he's first attacked, so we don't see it but we learn he's got it.

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The Winter Soldier is nearly flawless. It has one of the best action sequences in the entire MCU (The elevator Scene). On top of that, it's got a story that keeps on working with engaging performances all around.  It also has something: One of the only times that I think Black Widow actually works as a character. She gets to do the Spy thing while being able to own the scenes she's in. She's usually just Action Chick in most of the other films and here, she gets to do her thing.

First Avenger is a fine movie but it just doesn't do as much for me sadly.

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Something Winter Soldier really does well is integrating multiple characters. Steve and Peggy were the only characters with much of a focus in First Avenger, while Winter Soldier gives everyone significant roles. If the latter didn't have the museum scene or the flashbacks, most people would've forgotten about Bucky. Even First Avenger made Bucky's "death" more about Steve's failure and not his loss.

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'The First Avenger' showcased Cap's unbreakable heroism and patriotism in a classic setting so well, but 'The Winter Soldier' took those characteristics, tested them, flipped them on their head, and established the same very qualities in a modern, undoubtable way. And whilst 'The First Avenger' brought the hero to life, 'The Winter Soldier' showed us why he is an enduring and essential part of the MCU.

Not only this, but 'The Winter Soldier'  has great action, introduces great supporting characters, and really delivers where it counts. It is a powerhouse and at the top of the MCU, for me. It has my (currently deciding) vote.

 

Please, someone else vote - this is entirely too much pressure.

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11 hours ago, Davedevil said:

Something Winter Soldier really does well is integrating multiple characters. Steve and Peggy were the only characters with much of a focus in First Avenger, while Winter Soldier gives everyone significant roles. If the latter didn't have the museum scene or the flashbacks, most people would've forgotten about Bucky. Even First Avenger made Bucky's "death" more about Steve's failure and not his loss.

I agree with that, Bucky was sort of an appendage to Steve, and Peggy definitely has a higher priority of focus in the film that he does. Which, given how they characterized Bucky as Steve's same age BFF and not his teenage sidekick, isn't so much a flaw in that first film as it is an observation.

And to Will's point on the Black Widow, I like that even after The Avengers, she's still not a million percent trustworthy in the way that Steve expects her to be at first because of her nature as a spy. It's a good use of her character I think, which does fall by the wayside down the line to where she's just one of the Avengers.

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