Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Captain America Civil War-Hero vs Hero

     It was the mid-90s when I saw my first blockbuster superhero action flick and for years afterwards I denied my love for the genre. Then a few years ago I was looking for something to watch on Netflix and landed on Captain America: America’s First Avenger and immediately became infatuated by the origin story of how Steve Rogers became the military enhanced super soldier. Flash forward to May 6 2016 (opening day) and I found myself in a full theater surrounded by young and old wearing a multitude of shirts with their chosen comic book hero. There I sat on the aisle seat as my very own Captain America action figure which
 was gently placed on the arm rest to watch right along with me. Yes I was Team Cap all the way (that man can do some extraordinary things with just a shield) as the lights went down and Captain America: Civil War began.

     Our hero’s story continues as Captain America aka Steve Rogers played by the enticing     Chris Evans is watching from a tall building in some foreign country as Falcon aka Sam Wilson played by the talented Anthony Mackie and Scarlet Witch played by Elizabeth Olsen locate and chase the bad guys through a busy market place. Cut to Tony Stark aka Iron Man played by the always worth watching Robert Downey Jr. in the middle of a crisis of conscience. Tony assembles those Avengers he can and a decision must be made, one that pits the group against each other as alliances are made and secrets are discovered.

     Along with the first movie appearance of Black Panther played by Chadwick Boseman, Captain America: Civil War is an exciting ride full of action, humor and realness that will have the viewer wondering what will happen next!

      It is a story of friendship and what it means to be loyal to a fault (and a choice between the two as Rogers wants to help Bucky Barnes aka Winter Soldier played by the superb Sebastian Stan even if it means hurting Tony). The chemistry between Downey Jr and Evans is flawless at portraying a friendship on the rocks as they argue over what the right thing to do is and encounter in hand to hand combat. I held on tightly to my action figure when it was time for the climatic fight scene. I watched as two sides of the same coin clashed in an amazing epic battle that includes appearances by a young untested Spiderman (Tom Holland) and new comer to the Marvel movie universe, Ant-Man (Paul Rudd). Between the crazy good special effects of buildings collapsing and cars “flying” there are slow and perfect moments of sweetness and sadness throughout the film.

     Vision (Paul Bettany), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), War Machine (Don Cheadle) and Emily VanCamp also star in this continuation of the best superhero film franchise I have come across. High praise for directors Anthony Russo and Joe Russo and writers Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely and Mark Miller.     

     If I am being completely honest this film is the perfect example of escapism as the 2 and ½ hours flew by and I actually forgot Donald Trump was running for President.

      The title says it all as Captain America: Civil War is everything you want it to be in a (almost summer) popcorn flick and is a joy to watch from beginning to end.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

The Good Wife had a Good Life (series spoilers)

     Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies) you weren’t just The Good Wife, you were a mother, a daughter, a sister, a lawyer, a friend and a lover. For 7 years you fought for those who needed a voice while dealing with a new life drama each week. It wasn’t always easy for you. First you had to stand by your husband Peter (Chris North) who was DA and would end as Governor, when his sleeping with prostitutes became a state wide scandal that lead you from being just a wife and mother, to Zach (Graham Phillips) and Grace (Makenzie Vega) and back to the workplace. Alicia had to prove to herself and co-workers that she could once again be a lawyer and a good one at that. She would work hard by starting at the bottom with the first year law grads and proved her worth to her co-workers, heads of the law firm and herself

     Along the way Alicia met Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski) her first”boss” since law school, who would come to be an ally and friend. There was Cary Argos (Matt Czuchry) who started the same time she did and would butt heads in and out of the courtroom (for a short time they had their own law firm). Kalinda (Archie Penjabi) who started as a PI for Alicia and the firm but would become a true friend. Last but not least there was Will Gardner (Josh Charles).Will hired Alicia and had been in love with her his entire adult life, Alicia would fall in love with him but there relationship was cut short when Mr. Gardner was shot and killed during a trial (a real surprise to viewers). One final time we thank Will for showing Alicia that she could fall in love again and will never forget him.

     Others who crossed Alicia’s path included- Eli Gold (Alan Cumming), who was Peter’s campaign manager and confidant for Alicia. Howard Lyman (Jerry Adler) and David Lee (Zach Grenier) the other two names on the law firms letterhead. Louis Canning (Michael J Fox) a worthy adversary in the courtroom for Alicia. Lemond Bishop (Mike Colter) one of Alicia’s many clients, a drug lord and all around bad guy. And Lucca (Cush Jumbo) who only appeared in the last couple of seasons but came into her own and was a good character to watch.    

     Thank you to the husband and wife team of Robert King and Michelle King for one amazing show and the well written, fascinating characters who we were allowed to follow season after season. The cast put everything they had into each episode and never disappointed. The Good Wife will forever be a Great Show