Captain America (Chris Evans), by and large, is a team player. In his origin film, he endured harsh physical punishment just to earn the right to fight side-by-side with his military brethren on behalf of his country. If a war is being waged, Cap wants to be on the front lines, defending freedom with his dedicated corps of good guys.
But these days, the good guys tend to look a little too much like the bad guys, which is why Cap keeps his guard up, waiting for a betrayal around almost every corner.
That’s the theme of the latest behind-the-scenes featurette "Conspiracy," released by Marvel (via ComicBookMovie) on behalf of April’s The Winter Soldier. Stranded in contemporary times following the events of The Avengers, Steve Rogers has aligned himself with Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and the agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. He is taking lessons in global politics from veteran leader Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford). And he’s dealing with the return of a lethal threat from his past.
Oh, and now that you mention it, he also learns that everyone he thought he could trust has been lying to him from day one.
The word on The Winter Soldier has always been that co-directors Joe and Anthony Russo were tasked with delivering Marvel’s answer to the conspiracy-theory, paranoia-soaked thrillers of the 1970s – which is why it’s such a delicious nod to have Mr. Three Days of the Condor on board in a supporting role. I just know I’m going to want to rush home after my Winter Soldier screening and throw on All the President’s Men. Or Sneakers. Hell, let’s make it a double feature.
But the above feature goes so far as to remind us that Captain America often has to stand alone against the tyranny of evil (that one was for your, Sam), and he rarely will have a team as mighty as The Avengers to fall back on when things get ugly… as they will in Winter Soldier. You can surround Cap with a Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and a Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson). But when the chips are on the table and he’s staring down Bucky on a smoky street, there’s just Rogers and his shield – the first Avenger, ready to administer patriotic justice.
I’m getting carried away. These featurettes really pump me up! Marvel, no doubt, will fan the flame of fan passion leading into The Winter Soldier, which opens everywhere on April 4. The events of Captain America are supposed to feed right into Age of Ultron, with a pit stop into outer space for Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s the Golden Age of Marvel cinema. Soak it in.