DVD Review Captain America (Re-released 1992 Edition)
Directed by: Albert Pyun Cast: Matt Salinger, Ronny Cox, Ned Beatty Running Time: 1 hr 35 mins Rating: PG-13 Due Out: Aug 23, 2011
PLOT: The American crusader, Captain America (Salinger), is forced to confront a fellow super soldier gone wrong in the form of Red Skull.
WHO'S IT FOR? My instinct says this movie is for people who've already had quite a bit to drink, but comic book fans might enjoy this movie for a good laugh if nothing else.
It's funny to me that Captain America tackles fascism in the way that it does. Mainly because the film's closing credits are marked with a distinctly pro-environmental message. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for it, but indoctrination is indoctrination just the same, regardless of the message.
Still, if the film's heavy-handed moralizing isn't enough to turn you off of the film, the acting will surely do it. For me, a superhero/comic book movie is only as good as its villain. Scott Paulin, as Red Skull, does his best with the material, which isn't very strong to begin with, but in the end, it just feels like he's channeling his inner-Emperor Palpatine and regurgitating it to an indifferent audience.
What's shocking is that Paulin isn't even the worst offender. His bits are at least laughably bad in a tragic sort of way. Captain America, played by Matt Salinger, is absolutely everything about the superhero genre that prevents it from being taken seriously. He's stale and rigid in moments of heroism and worse yet, he actually manages to make me like Captain America even less, which is a feat in and of itself.
To be fair to the actors, it's clear early on that they don't have much to work with when it comes to script. The general elements of the superhero genre are all present, but they lack any sort of conviction. Instead, they seem to be shoddily pasted together to make for a generic story about a man fighting evil. Sound boring? That's mainly because it is.
Captain America could have made for a good time if they had managed to find somebody truly invested in the hero or in the story itself, but Pyun seems indifferent. As such, it's difficult not to match the same blase attitude that went into directing it. With the production quality of a made-for-TV movie, stale acting, and an even more painful script, Captain America's debut on DVD is just the kind of evildoing that Captain America himself might work to prevent.
MOVIE SCORE: 2/10