Five America Tweets

It’s 11:30 pm and everyone needs to wind down for an hour or so before crashing. But Joe Johnston‘s Captain America (Paramount, 7.22) screened tonight at the Grove, and I was knocked over, levitated, delighted. I could feel the mixed energy in the room, and it’s obvious that some are going to “meh” this amazing film. “It’s okay,” “Not bad,” etc. Wrong! I’m just going to re-post tonight’s tweets and let it go at that…for now.

Tweet #1: “Retro-Captain America is my favorite Marvel movie ever, by far. LOVED IT! Best Joe Johnston flick since The Rocketeer! Fast & fleet & spiffy. Exactly the right tone for a 1940s-era patriotic superhero flick. Not comic, not satiric, not a jape. And yet it speeds right along, cuts to the chase, does it right.”

Tweet #2: “Captain America doesn’t end traditionally or wholesomely or even conclusively — it ends like a continuing serial — but what happens is a complete surprise. And the film as a whole is a lot more ‘sincere’ than tongue-in-cheek.”

Tweet #3: “Captain America is the delightful opposite of a dark, heavyweight, super-labored, wannabe-Chris-Nolan movie. Loved the brownish-amber colors, the patriotic ’40s ambiance, the concise shape and pace of it. No fat, no slack…punch it.”

Tweet #4: “Anyone who comes out of Captain America saying ‘meh, it’s mildly okay’ is aesthetically blocked. They just don’t get it. Captain America moves, mad-dashes, soars, whooshes, runs, delights & barrel-asses. It’s pure art direction, pure mood, and all of a piece. And mostly unpredictable.”

Tweet #5: “Captain America made me feel good about the spirit of ComicCon. Three hours ago I was still fantasizing about strafing the fanboys.”

48 thoughts on “Five America Tweets

  1. Rashad on said:

    And what happened then? When in HE they say, that the Grinch’s small heart grew three sizes that day.

  2. So far, the three superhero movies of the summer (I’m not including Priest which is based on a comic book) have done OK business. Thor was the biggest so far with around 181M domestic, X-Men with 145, and Green Lantern with 116. So I wonder where Captain will come in. I’m thinking anywhere between 150-180.

    I remember CA and Thor were being trashed all over the internet ever since they went into production, but both movies might end up becoming two of the biggest movies of the summer.

  3. I have to question the fact that there has been zero Wells posts about Don Murphy trying to put a “Captain Planet” movie together.

    This is the most hilarious thing I’ve heard in a while…and I’ve seen Transformers 3.

  4. But how does it compare to the 70s Captain America? Speaking of which, the actor for that one’s gonna be at the Shrine next month.

    scooter: I didn’t know it’s in 3D, too.

    Chumley: I blame Avatar for us being screwed with a Captain Planet movie.

    Joe: You can use Twitlonger.

  5. if wells liked it this much it’s gotta be a great comic book movie :)

    can’t wait — it certainly looks awesome

  6. First Jeffrey gives Thor a pass.

    Then he gushes over X-Men First Class.

    Now he’s over the moon over Captain America.

    “Make Mine Marvel!”

    - Jeffrey Wells, Hollywood Elsewhere.

  7. Man, I’m just wondering how Captain America will fare against Friends with Benefits. I like Evans, but he doesn’t have much name recognition. Again, Paramount dropped the ball by not releasing it on 4th of July weekend.

  8. @Kakihara

    That was probably the plan, but once a Transformers movie was scheduled for this year, Paramount probably realized that they couldn’t compete directly with it.

  9. I”m glad to hear it. because its late screening date here has worried me. I’ve been intrigued by its retro-vibe.

  10. “First Jeffrey gives Thor a pass.

    Then he gushes over X-Men First Class.

    Now he’s over the moon over Captain America.

    “Make Mine Marvel!”

    - Jeffrey Wells, Hollywood Elsewhere. ”

    And he secretly hates Tree of Life, but can’t say it lest he completely sacrifice his credibility.

    But that’s OK. He’ll still deign to tell ComicCon fanboys and MIchele Bachmann voters what cultural backwardians they are.

  11. Okay, well … I wasn’t expecting THAT out of Jeff for this movie.

    What I’m really wondering is this: will kids respond to this movie? World War II was seventy years ago. Sure, Jeff is jonesing on the throwback, movie serial vibe he remembers fondly from his youth, but will kids get into it as well.

    From what I remember, kids didn’t really like The Rocketeer or Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, the two movies this most resembles.

  12. By kids what do you mean? Kid kids or teens? Indiana Jones was a long time before today’s moviegoers, and the 4th was huge.

  13. Yes. Yes. Yes.

    I wasn’t invited to this one. Can’t wait. If an old fart like Jeff loves it then a slightly less older fart than me will as well.

  14. Am I the only one who thinks we’re being punked here? CA has a 40% on RT right now. I actually was expecting it to get a lot of “this is pleasingly old-school” sorta reviews… but just not from Mr Wells.

  15. @Mike, the reviews at RT seem to be lining up as the cynics v. the geeks. It sounds like the very things that the geeks like (the retro, pulp corn) is what is turning off the cynics. Hopefully the public at large will respond to the vibe.

    It’s not unheard-of for this kind of thing to slip by Jeffrey’s defenses (though he usually recants later). I think his tweets are sincere.

  16. Has conventional wisdom somewhere along the way decided that The Rocketeer was a good movie?

    I like the deco thing, but I recall that film being awfully bland. So saying this is Johnston’s best “since The Rocketeer” isn’t exactly lighting me on fire.

    Ah, well.

    As for Sky Captain… great look, great vibe, dead on arrival.

  17. @ Rashad – Um, the fourth Indy film had three previous well-received Indy films that kids were familiar with via cable and DVD’s.

    Meanwhile, when was the last time you saw a kid reading a Captain America comic?? 1962??

    The comparison is ridiculous.

  18. Do you honestly believe teens were popping in Raiders instead of going to see Transformers or Star Trek? The last one came out in 1989. And even still, the point is audiences like pulpy adventure stuff. The Mummy series is period adventure and was huge. Cap is a popular character, and is setting up The Avengers. It has a lot more recognition than Thor did, and that was successful.

    And yeah plenty of people have been reading Cap comics recently. The Ultimates series alone has been one of the most popular for Marvel. So again, what are you referring to by “kids?”

  19. Another thought re: Indy 4 success

    I’m not even really sure that kids (or teens) made up the majority of that film’s financial success. Most of the kids I knew (10-17 at the time) shrugged the film off. Although there’s no data to back it up, I think the vast majority of the audience for that film were 25-55 year olds who remember the series more vividly.

    People in that age range went to see the film in droves for two reasons:

    1. They wanted to recapture the spirit of adventure that Indy represented in those earlier, better films.

    2. They wanted to see if an aging Harrison Ford could actually still pull off the stunts like he did when he was 35.

    I went in for both reasons, actually.

  20. Trade reviews are negative. I don’t mind Wells flipping for the movie, good for him. But dismissing critics as “aesthetically blocked” is typical arrogant myopia.

  21. @ Rashad – No, I don’t think teens were “popping in Raiders instead of watching Transformers or Star Trek.” As I thought I’d made clear, those teens saw the first Indy films WHEN THEY WERE YOUNGER on CABLE and ON DVD. Then, they responded to the stimulus to see the new film because they recognized the character FROM WHEN THEY WERE YOUNGER.

    You do make an interesting point about The Mummy, though. I still can’t account for why that bullshit made any money.

  22. So where do we stand on browns? Lights blues trended early 90′s, green late 90′s, teal and orange for the aughts, and now after Social Network, we’re in a brown trend. I like actual brown better than simply desaturating until everything just looks brown.

  23. I’m with bluefungue on this one… I wasn’t that crazy about “Rocketeer” when I saw it, and that was back when I wasn’t so grumpy and unforgiving.

  24. Joe’s right. I just counted the first one, and it’s 255 characters. Would you care to provide attributions for these alleged tweets, Wells?

  25. Jeff is right. This is the best Marvel Studios film by a mile. It’s one the best Marvel comics movies ever, with a first act that’s almost as good as the respective first acts of X2 and Superman: the Movie. Stanley Tucci is absolutely wonderful, as strong an anchor (albeit with less overall screentime) as Gary Oldman in The Dark Knight and the rest of the cast is up to snuff. I didn’t like the very end, and you can skip the 3D, but the film is absolutely terrific entertainment, a high quality WWII action adventure that happens to be based on a comic book.

    For those who care – http://scottalanmendelson.blogspot.com/2011/07/review-captain-america-saves-best-pre.html

  26. I would give Thor a pass and I liked X-Men: FC, so I’m that much more pleased Jeff loved Capt. America.

    Mummy was 1999; all the good art movies were around the corner, and it wasn’t too far past when Independence Day and Twister were huge movies. I kinda liked Mummy at the time. Hated the sequels.

  27. “Meanwhile, when was the last time you saw a kid reading a Captain America comic?? 1962??”

    Thanks for bringing this up, Ray. If the Wikipedia entry on CA is accurate, the chap was on hiatus during 1953-1964. I wondered why as a devoted comic-book reader as a kid I was unaware of CA. Now I know that he was both before and after my time.

  28. The first Mummy movie is good. Certainly the type of PG-13 family thing that makes a ton of money. How quickly we turn.

  29. fugue: It’s been a while since I saw the Rocketeer movie, but the NES game it inspired was fun.

    Rashad: Well, the screenings *I’ve* seen for re-releases of Indy had a decent younger audience. Same deal with the Special INO Editions of Star Wars. So I guess if it’s a tentpole event movie with actors still getting work, it’ll sell decades later. And the Mummy made money because it was an action-adventure movie which only loosely acknowledged its roots. See what happened when they tried to go the other way with the recent Wolfman.

    Ray: I doubt it. If it were just the fogies, Indy 4 would’ve bombed and/or disappointed. See the box office of the recent Terminator movies.

  30. Kakihara “It’s been a while since I saw the Rocketeer movie, but the NES game it inspired was fun”

    All you need to know about DZ’s opinions is that The Rocketeer was awarded Worst Movie-to-Game of 1992 by Electronic Gaming Monthly.

  31. MDOC: Yeah, and EGM’s owner fired a guy for not liking Kane and Lynch, because they were on the take. What’s your point?

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