The first trailer for the second Captain America movie has just hit the Internet, and it seems to have been met with positive reception so far. Doing a sequel to Captain America is a bit of a tricky deal since, other than his origin story, there really is no truly iconic Captain America story. Even more than that one of the biggest aspects of Captain America is that he is a leader. Sure he is probably the best hand-to-hand fighter on the planet, but his real strength is in motivating those around him and being a solid battlefield General. So putting him into a solo(ish) situation generally does not lead to particularly memorable stories, in most cases. That is probably why this second movie has taken its cue from the comics and focused the story primarily on another character, the titular Winter Soldier, instead. Not that you would know it from the trailer.
The trailer itself is well put together, and one of the better ones I have seen in recent years for a superhero movie. It drops just enough information to grab your interest, but does not seemingly spoil any major plot points up front (except, perhaps, the crashing heli-carrier). It also introduces us to the main cast of this feature, which apparently will be Cap, Black Widow (which is a good choice, if they are sticking to the Winter Soldier’s original origin), Falcon (played by Anthony Mackie), Nick Fury and the delightfully obscure Alexander Pierce (played by Robert Redford). There is plenty of action in the trailer, and from the look of things it is well choreographed, with a heavy emphasis on stylized fighting. I am not really sold on Cap’s uniform (modelled on his time as Super Soldier a few years back), but I will have to see it in action before passing judgment.
The Winter Soldier is an interesting choice for the second movie, but a logical one in a way. I will not spoil who the Winter Soldier is, precisely, (not least because they may change it for the movie) but suffice to say it ties back into Cap’s origin story, and brings a certain sense of closure to one of Cap’s greatest regrets from World War 2. It is probably the best story that Marvel could have picked to follow Captain America and The Avengers with, since just about anything else would be a bit too awkward. There is an inherent danger in these franchise movies in that they can stop telling interesting stories after a while, and are just going through the motions. To a degree we saw that with both X-Men 3: The Last Stand and Spider-Man 3, as well as some of the pre-Christian Bale Batman sequels. You get to a point where the movies become cash grabs, and all impact is lost. I honestly do not know where Captain America goes from here in the movieverse (outside of leading the Avengers), but hopefully Marvel will have an answer to that.
But that is neither here nor there. Let us take The Winter Soldier as it comes to us, and not worry about what follows. The first true trailer for the movie hits all the right notes, and has got me excited for what is probably the first of the Phase 2 movies that starts the setup for Avengers 2 (I do not know where Thor: Dark World will play into it, but at least for that one we will know soon enough).
You can see the Official Trailer here.