THE REEL: A sneak preview of “The Winter Soldier”

By: Ben Conniff

As the 9th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, one might expect “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” to be just another stale superhero flick.

That kind of estimation couldn’t be further from the truth.

“Winter Soldier” is exactly the post-“Avengers” kick in the pants that this franchise needed.

Dare I say “Winter Soldier” is even better than “The Avengers”?

Here’s why:

Directors Anthony & Joe Russo (perhaps best known for their work directing episodes of “Community” and “Arrested Development”) ditch tired CGI spectacle in favor of hard-driving, old-school action.  As such, it’s quite unlike any superhero flick to come along in the past few years.

I think I was most surprised at how wordy the film was. The story from series vets Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely feels more like a spy thriller that just happens to feature Captain America, Black Widow and Falcon thrown into the mix.

As Cap (Chris Evans) continues to realize his place in the digital age, he and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) make a shocking discovery that rocks S.H.I.E.L.D. to its core. As demons arise from Steve’s past, the line between friend and foe becomes blurred.

What happens in the end will certainly reshape the future of the Marvel universe. The studio is famous for dropping its hints, and fanboys will salivate at the possibilities presented herein.

Look out for my full review of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” in the coming days, but be sure to check it out in theaters now!