Civil War came out in 2016 and was exceptionally hyped/promoted by both Marvel and the actors. They made silly short videos featuring the tension between both sides, clips that asked people to pick a side, and other interesting content that’s worth checking out on YouTube. It is the first film in Phase 3 which is the longest phase as of today. One thing I remember was everyone deciding between Team Cap or Team Ironman, despite the fact that we didn’t know anything about the plot or why there were sides. I believe at the time I was leaning more towards Team Cap, but I would say now I don’t have a side because I understand the reasoning for both. In this review, I will not be taking a side either, just presenting their reasoning. It is up to you if you want to pick a side or remain neutral.
Before we jump into the emotional depth of this film, let’s discuss some other things first. This film still has the original Marvel logo, which I honestly thought changed at the start of Phase 3 but I was wrong! And something worth mentioning as that of course there are going to be other Avengers in their “solo” films. Their lives are too intertwined now for them to have a film without at least one other Avenger in it. The fight scenes were awesome, all choreographed excellently and exciting to watch, even though they were friends against friends. Peggy Carter dies, and at her funeral we learn that Sharon is her niece. Later, we have an extremely forced romance/kiss between her and Steve, which was just utter chaos. Thankfully it gets dismissed in the future films. We meet Peter Parker, aka Spider-Man, and Ant-Man makes a cameo as well! Stan Lee makes a cameo as the FedEX delivery guy, delivering a package for “Tony Stank,” which is a hilarious joke and something to help lighten the mood for the end of the film.
Let’s look at Tony’s side of things, or essentially his reasoning for signing the accords. We already see that Tony is going through some personal stuff, missing his parents and being separated from Pepper because he can’t stop being Iron Man and she wants him to stop. Then he learns just how much damage they actually cause. Yes, in the bigger picture of things they’re saving the world, but there are so many smaller casualties and Tony learns about this firsthand. When the accords are formed, he realizes this is the solution he was looking for. He just wants to do what is best for everyone, and doesn’t want anyone getting hurt in the process. He believes that if the Avengers are being monitored and not doing what they please, less people will be hurt. Later in the film, he does go to help Steve because he realizes Bucky wasn’t the criminal and he has a duty to go after the actual criminal. However, he learns that Bucky killed his parents and rage overcomes him. In the end, he returns to the compound and continues living by the accords, as far as we’re aware anyway.
Now Steve’s side, or his reasoning for not signing them. Steve believes in doing what is right no matter what, and taking responsibility for one’s actions. He worries that the UN won’t send the Avengers out where they’re needed, or send them places they don’t need to be. He doesn’t believe they should be supervised, that’s not why they exist. He always has and always will do what is right, even if it means going against what everyone tells him to do. When it comes to Bucky, he knows deep down in his gut Bucky didn’t bomb the UN meeting, and when he learns about the other Winter Soldiers he knows they have to be stopped at all costs. He’s willing to fight for Bucky, even if it means fighting Tony. He believed he was doing the right thing by not telling Tony about his parents, but he learned that he was wrong. In the end, he is still going to be there for Tony when the time comes.
Now for Bucky, a character who I’ve argued from the beginning isn’t the bag guy, HYDRA was! We see some of his training back at Hydra, and slowly piece together that he killed Tony’s parents. He’s currently living in Romania when he gets framed for the UN bombing, and has a small notebook where he keeps his memories, in case he forgets again. He doesn’t want to be the bad guy, he just wants to live his life. We also learn that he does in fact remember everyone he killed, which broke my heart. Bucky is a good guy, and I have a clear example of this in case you aren’t convinced. When they’re all fighting in the airport, Bucky goes to punch Peter. However, Peter stops it, which shocks Bucky, and then we see his facial expression when he realizes Peter is just a kid once Peter starts talking. He doesn’t want to hurt him and pulls his punches. Also, side note, him flipping the motorcycle to get on it was an extremely badass moment.
There are a lot of other characters in the film, so I won’t be going in-depth with them since they weren’t the main focus. We see Wanda and Vision begin to fall for each other, but since they end up on different siders it makes things tense. Clint has gone into retirement, but when everything goes to shit, he shows up to repay his debt to Wanda. Even though him and Natasha fight, they’re still friends. In the end, Natasha leaves because she realized she made the wrong choice and ends up going to do her own thing. Falcon will follow Cap for pretty much anything, as Rhodey does with Tony. However, Rhodey becomes somewhat paralyzed from the waist down after their airport battle.
The two end credit scenes foreshadow two future Marvel films. First, Bucky in Wakanda. We get our first glance at Wakanda and are gearing up for the Black Panther film! We met T’Challa earlier in the film and learned that he is the Black Panther, and now the King of Wakanda. He is a good guy who wants to do what is right, and learns that vengeance is not the way. He offers protection for Bucky and his sister, Shuri, will be the one who fixes him. The second scene was Peter messing with his new Spider-Man gear, which is very exciting because Spider-Man is officially in the MCU!
This week’s post is sponsored by Podcasting Until Ragnarok, a podcast inspired by this blog. Be sure to go check it out wherever you get your podcasts and subscribe!