Recently I wrote about how I had watched a shit-ton of Netflix while I was sick. I ended up re-watching two movies that I hadn’t seen in some time – Captain America: The First Avenger and Interstellar.
I watched both of these at the theatre and enjoyed them. One, was hailed as a great movie. The other…not so much. You know what? Lets just get to it…I have a confession to make. I did not like Captain America as much as everyone else. In fact, I was quite convinced that it was the weakest of the MCU movies and felt that way up until a couple weeks ago. And I had gone to war with people on this, arguing my point. Don’t I look like a fool now.
I remember leaving the theatre after watching Captain America and my friends were saying how cool it was; how much fun they had; how it was the best movie of the MCU and maybe EVER. Gimme a break, I thought. To me, the 90-second Avengers movie tease at the end was far more exciting than the whole of Captain America. I just didn’t like it. I thought it was boring and I really didn’t care. When I got home afterwards and in the days following, I went online to see if anyone shared my opinion. And for the most part, no one did. And those that may have thought the same as I? I didn’t feel using some of those internet trolls as a good point of reference to bolster my side.
When the movie came out on home video (I realize that’s an out-dated term, but its my blog, right?) I picked the movie up for two reasons: 1) I am a completionist and wanted it in my MCU catalogue and 2) maybe I was wrong?
I fired the movie up, sat back on my comfy couch, prepared to enjoy this movie like everyone else and…I fell asleep. This wasn’t a good sign. I ended up trying again and when I finally made it through the whole movie, I had the same feeling as I did when I saw it months earlier in the theatre. For whatever reason, I just didn’t enjoy the movie. I did watch it again a year or so later but more as background noise than anything. I didn’t care to revisit The First Avenger.
When the sequel The Winter Soldier came out, I went bananas for that movie. I hold that movie in high regard not just as a good comic book movie, but as a good movie overall. And while I really liked Civil War, I prefer The Winter Soldier, but just by a bit. I was convinced that The First Avenger was the bastard child of not only the trilogy, but of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Until a couple weeks ago.
I had mentioned in that previous post that one of the reasons I watched so much Netflix is that I couldn’t sleep. So…again, this wont be a popular statement but…I chose to put on Captain America: The First Avenger with the hopes that it would make me sleepy and tired and pass out. But instead, not only did I stay awake, I was wide awake. Holy shit, this is an awesome movie! What the hell was I thinking about before?? I finally started to understand why people showed so much love to this movie.
I decided to watch it again after I was feeling better, just to ensure that I wasn’t having some delusional trip through the sickness void. And I’m glad I did because it just reaffirmed that I really, really liked The First Avenger. And yes, its not perfect and its not the best movie ever, but damn if it isn’t in the top…seven (?) of the MCU movies. Its good. I wish I could pinpoint what changed for me, but I cant. It was just a feeling I had when I first saw it, an opinion, that I no longer shared.
I’m not sure I can draft a decent segue to discuss Interstellar so…
I saw Interstellar with a co-worker when it came out and we both enjoyed it but at just-shy of 3-hours, in an uncomfortable movie theatre chair…you can only like a movie so much. I remember walking out and talking about it and enjoying it more than my co-worker but when he asked why…I had no answer. I just knew I enjoyed it but as for why…I couldn’t articulate it.
I had wanted to re-watch it but life got in the way and it wasn’t until close to nine days ago that I watched it again for the second time. And wow. I was blown away with how much I enjoyed it on that second viewing. I still am likely unable to properly articulate why I like it so much but I think its just a smart movie. I don’t care about the science of it and whether its ‘good’ science or ‘bad’ science. I don’t care about how realistic it is or how plausible.
I like what each actor brought to the role. I like the AI robots and how smart, yet simplistic, their designs are. I really, really like the music and score done by Hans Zimmer. The special effects won an Oscar…and I can totally get behind that! And the story is good: Earth is becoming uninhabitable and Matthew McConaughey, a former NASA pilot, leads a group of astronauts to find a new planet for humans to live on. Ok, that’s a really oversimplification of the plot. You know what? Just watch it. Trust me.
As with all movies, there are those who like it and those who don’t. For me, a quasi-cinephile, its rare that I would like a movie substantially more on its second viewing, but with Interstellar, I did. I recently told a friend about how much I enjoyed it and he looked at me like I was losing my brain. And shit, maybe I am.
But I’ll keep watching Captain America: The First Avenger and Interstellar over and over again and telling everyone who’ll listen why both of these movies were, to me, way better upon second viewing than the first time. And maybe, if either of those movies didn’t do it for you when you first saw them, you should watch them again. You may be really, and pleasantly, surprised.