Captain America and Elsa set a good example
Published 7:00 am Tuesday, April 29, 2014
By Hugh McDonald
If the first Captain America movie ended with the premise “back with the old, into the new”, then the second Captain America movie has changed that premise to “back with the old, in with the new”. Captain America still presents himself as an anachronism, something from another time that doesn’t belong in this one, but nothing can prepare him for the anachronism known as “The Winter Soldier.”
Against the backdrop of an American government that has left his idea of freedom behind as antiquated by creating a computer program that uses information collected from the internet to classify people as threats and targets them for execution Captain America is introduced to The Winter Soldier during an assassination attempt on a main character. The action scenes in this movie are very well choreographed but are sometimes a little too fast for the human eye to follow.
The story is both intellectually and emotionally engaging as Captain America and Natasha Romanov do battle with HYDRA’s evil plot to take over the U.S. government and its’ citizens by spying on us all and the Winter Soldier at the same time, eventually leading to the revelation that The Winter Soldier is not a new face to Captain America. In the end Captain America’s desire to stick to his principles and defend America’s freedom serves him well and makes for a great movie. Marvel has placed at least two references to other characters not seen in the movie to look for in the future. Dr. Steven Strange is mentioned in conversation and Natasha Romanov wears a necklace with an arrow on it that is a not so subtle nod to her romantic involvement with Hawkeye the bow wielding hero. Captain America is a timeless character in the present age that’s principles have definitely carried him from the print age to the digital one and hopefully far into the future.
If you are not in the mood for fast-paced science fiction/action but would like a good musical with a positive message instead, then “Frozen” is a good rental choice for you. Since “Frozen” is a musical I consulted the local Picayune Memorial Junior High School Band Director Jamin Mcphetrige for a professional opinion on the quality of the music. Jamin has a B.S. in Music Education from The University of Alabama and a Master’s Degree in Music from The University of Southern Mississippi. He called attention to a chanting style known as “Vuelie” that is used at the beginning and end of the movie to add a sense of old-age to the story and the use of certain instruments such as wind chimes, pianos, and harps that make sounds that pair well with scenes depicting cold weather and magic.
Mr. Mcphetrige was impressed with the instrumentation selected for the music but expressed a concern that the Vuelie chanting may not connect well with an audience that might not notice its significance.
I enjoyed this movie because the main character is much more independent than Snow White, Cinderella, or some of the other female characters that Disney has created. Snow White, Cinderella, and the like seem to require a “Prince Charming” to solve their problems but Elsa does not. Elsa, who is voiced by Idina Menzel who is famous for her portrayal of Elphaba the misunderstood witch in the musical “Wicked”, learns to embrace her abilities and be happy with who she is.
Songs like “For the First Time in Forever” and “Let it Go” make for an enjoyable musical movie experience about a main character who learns to be proud of who she is and not hide her gifts from the world. If you are in the mood for fast-paced science fiction/action make sure you see “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” while it is still in theaters but if you are more interested in a good musical with a positive role model for a main character “Frozen” is a good rental choice for you.
Until next time, have fun at the show and don’t forget the popcorn!