Captain America 2: The Winter Solider
The Russo Brothers' Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier is an exhilarating feature that is witty without being glib and thrilling without being mindless. Chris Evans, who stars as the cryogenically preserved WWII hero Steve Rogers aka Captain America, knows how to deliver patriotic indignation and fill an Under Armour T-shirt, which is not a diss because this latest edition in the Marvel comics cinematic catalog is all about talking a big game about truth, justice and the American way (with apologies to D.C. Comics) and having the muscle to back it up. In this edition, Cap has to defend S.H.I.E.L.D., the agency responsible for transforming him from a 94-pound weakling into the specimen of masculine pulchritude that he is, and the world from the evil insurgent group Hydra and its own, unstoppable fighting machine, the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) of the title. Cap is joined in this exuberant undertaking by Samuel L. Jackson as S.H.I.E.L.D.'s head honcho Nick Fury, Scarlett Johannson as the winsome and pistol-packing Black Widow and Anthony McKie as the metal-winged Falcon. It's all great fun, action packed, reliably bloodless and features a pretty gnarly performance by Robert Redford as the milk-drinking Alexander Pierce, Fury's friend, mentor and boss, with a big secret.