Iron Man and Captain America: Heroes United
Iron Man and Captain America: Heroes United
It seems like it happens quite often when a straight to home video release catches me unaware until it is actually released as is the case with this movie which is a pseudo-sequel to Iron Man and Hulk: Heroes United from last year. It has the same kinda cell shaded CGI animation style and the same voice actors for Iron Man and Hulk, though it doesn’t quite feel as young skewed as the previous attempt, it’s not too deep either. And similar to Iron Man and Hulk, I didn’t really connect with this movie aside from a couple fights and a couple laughs, it was too simple, too silly, and didn’t really feel connected with anything. Even my daughter Jena didn’t give this one a whole lot of interest. It’s interesting that while Marvel is dominating the box office, and has quite a few TV shows out there, but its home video animated movies are severely lacking.
The whole movie is really just a set up for somewhat of a bromance between Captain America and Iron Man. Even though I’ve already forgotten most of the character dynamics of Iron Man and Hulk, that movie was predicated upon the fact that Hulk would just go in recklessly so he could smash stuff while Iron Man is trying to figure out a plan of attack. And yet here in this movie, Captain America is the one who is planning things out carefully before he goes in while Iron Man is the one who rushes in and improvises on the fly. Iron Man is once again voiced by Adrian Pasdar, and I still did not think he was a good fit for the role, he somehow makes Tony Stark sound too much like a teenager. Captain America was a little bit better, voiced by Roger Craig Smith who I think is funny that the credit that they reference is that he is from Wreck-It Ralph. He had maybe one line as Sonic the Hedgehog.
Anyway, there is yet another Hydra plot started by Red Skull to create an army of super soldiers with Iron Man’s weaponry. He recruits Taskmaster to infiltrate Stark’s flying fortress. Taskmaster is a villain that I was not familiar with, but he comes off relatively well, and his powers are explained that he can memorize and exactly duplicate any physical action that he sees, such as Captain America’s fighting style along with dozens of other martial arts techniques. Not only that, but he’s voiced by the great Clancy Brown. For some reason, Captain America uses his wager with Iron Man as an excuse to let himself get captured, which causes most of the problems from then on. The plot is actually somewhat convoluted with a whole mess of double crossing and trickery which didn’t always make that much sense, or was quickly dropped. I would say that the intrigue that worked the best was when Captain America was reprogrammed as Captain Hydra, and after he gets his sense knocked back into him, he continues to play as Captain Hydra for a brief moment.
The worst part of the plot comes out in the third act when Red Skull’s true plan is revealed. Technically this is spoiler territory, but I doubt many reading this will ever seek this movie out. Red Skull has a massive army of these brutish super soldiers, because he “improved” upon Steve Roger’s serum yet he still needed his blood to complete it. He also has been able to use this memory controlling machine to imbue these soldiers with Captain America’s fighting abilities along with his courage and intelligence. And within a very short period of time he has created hundreds of these super soldiers which he has also fitted Mega Man style repulsor cannons to one of their arms which he had stolen from Stark and was able to reverse engineer and mass produce on this scale over the course of what feels like a single day, maybe two. And this factory full of brutish super soldiers with Captain America’s fighting skill, intelligence, and Iron Man’s repulsor cannon still end up being a wall of brainless thugs who can’t fight their way out of a paper bag, even though Stark does call in Hulk for some back-up. In the end, the animation still feels cheap, the story tries to be more complex but ends up just not really making any sense, and while it doesn’t feel as deliberately childish as Iron Man and Hulk did, it’s still obviously aimed at a younger audience. But at least in my house, it didn’t even reach that audience. The only upside is that Steve Rogers does have a brief moment to wear the Iron Patriot armor, which I imagine is a fun geek moment for some. Until next time, this has been Bubbawheat for Flights, Tights, and Movie Nights.