Patience deficit audience may find the plot development a tad slow, but you will likely appreciate a story well told.

Team Captain America engaged in a battle with Team Iron Man

Team Captain America (Chris Evans) engaged in a battle with Team Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.)

In the cinematic realm, superheroes are often above the law. In the name of crime busting, they can blow up cars and tear buildings apart. But surely, as they finish off the supervillains, their excessive force must have also killed hundreds if not thousands of civilians when cities are reduced to rubbles. Yet, we let them be and continue with the hero worship.

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Hence, we’re glad that Marvel Studios finally came to their senses when they addressed the issue of collateral damage in its latest installment of the Captain America franchise. This time, The Avengers face mounting political pressure to have their powers checked. Their opinions are split. Team Captain America roots for operational independence while Team Iron Man believes in the need for accountability. This gives rise to a civil war which pits superheroes against superheroes.

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Some of us might have developed a fatigue for ensemble superhero flicks by now. We’ve just sat through battles between Batman and Superman, and we’ve seen how difficult it was for mutant heroes to choose between Professor X (good guy) and Magneto (bad guy) in the X-Men franchise. But Captain America still stands out for its riveting plot and believable characters thanks to screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely’s intimate understanding of the Marvel universe and the psyche of its superheroes. As a result, we can make sense of the Avengers’ choices, understand why they are at odds with each other, and empathize with their struggles between personal freedom and collective responsibility. We are also convinced of the need for the final face-off – a real achievement given how similar films have failed to justify why petty quarrels would turn into epic battles. Just think Batman V Superman.

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We also enjoy watching the ensemble cast – both old-timers and newly-introduced characters such as Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), Ant Man (Paul Rudd) and Spider-Man (Tom Holland). The film score is beautifully haunting and we like how it is effectively deployed to evoke memories of past installments. Patience deficit audience may find the plot development a tad too slow at first, but the narrative will pick up pace and you will likely appreciate a story well told.

Visual Effects: ★★★½☆ 

Soundtrack: ★★★½☆ 

Cast: ★★★★☆ 

Script: ★★★★☆ 

Overall rating: ★★★★☆ 

Release Date: 28 April 2016

Runtime: 147 minutes

Language: English

Censorship Rating: PG

Genre: Adventure/Action

Director: Anthony Russo and Joe Russo

Featured Cast: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan