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'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' Early Reactions

Last year, Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World continued Marvel Studios' dominance at the box office, as the beginning of "Phase 2" for the studio's Shared Cinematic Universe, following The Avengers becoming a massive critical/financial hit. Both the latest Iron Man and Thor movies played well with audiences overall, though between hardcore fans griping about the films' (mis)treatment of their comic book mythology and more general complaints - like how, arguably, Marvel has thus far been treading water in "Phase 2" - the hope has been that this year's MCU releases will up the ante, quality-wise.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier has been generating lots of positive buzz over the past few weeks in particular, with recently-unveiled footage from the Cap sequel indicating that early word about directors Anthony and Joe Russo - drawing from a script by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely (Captain America: The First Avenger) - having knocked this one out of the park, may've not been exaggeration after all.

The filmmakers behind Winter Solider have identified it as being a superhero movie by way of political thriller, suggesting that it could break new creative ground for Marvel Studios; inclusion of more than just elements of a non-comic book film genre (example: the sprinkles of buddy/action in Iron Man 3) would indeed be something innovative for the young studio.

In addition, buzz surrounding Markus and McFeely's script has suggested that its plot beats will shakeup the MCU something fierce - whether through Steve Rogers' (Chris Evans) character arc or via direct narrative repercussions for other Marvel properties, like its television series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. Similarly, insiders have been claiming that, with the Cap sequel, the Russo brothers have transitioned with ease from making cult TV comedy (Arrested Development, Community) to creating impressive big-budget spectacle.

So... is there actually some fire behind all this smoke? Well, have a look through the initial reactions posted to Twitter, by various movie bloggers and journalists who caught an early pre-release screening for Captain America: The Winter Soldier:

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'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' Early Reactions