Avenger starts |to flag

Chris Evans and Scarlett Johansson in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
Chris Evans and Scarlett Johansson in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

The first post-Avengers revisit for the red, white and blue shield-wielding hero Captain America keeps us on our toes up until a certain point and then disappointingly does not follow through.

Cap is going to have to step it up if he is going to remain relevant in the film versions of the Marvel comics. And this is coming from someone who preferred Cap’s last solo adventure over Thor, Iron Man and Hulk.

Still trying to fit into the 21st century, aided by a to do list of pop culture-related things to experience, Steve Rogers/Captain America (Chris Evans) is drawn into a conspiracy when an attempt is made on the life of Nick Fury’s (Samuel L. Jackson), head of S.H.I.E.L.D.

It all seems to be over top secret information that fellow agent and Avenger Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) downloaded on to a USB during a mission.

With secret agendas allocated to agents during missions becoming apparent (Fury calls it ‘compartmentalising’) and shady behaviour by his peers, Cap begins to distrust his supposed friends and colleagues.

Added into the mix is the presence of the superhuman, metal-armed Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan).

Though the final reveals offer no surprises, the build of the mystery in the first half is the hook for this sequel.

The direction had this viewer seriously second-guessing the ‘good guys’ at every turn.

Keeping us guessing is important because nothing much resonates here.

The Winter Soldier is the kind of film that thrills you while watching it ” the action is spectacular, the laughs engaging, the in-jokes consistently amusing ” but there are no guts or dramatic weight to keep it in your memory.