Phase Three of the Marvel Cinematic Universe began in May when Captain America: Civil War became the highest grossing film of 2016 worldwide… so far. With a 90% fresh rating on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes and an A Cinema Score, it instantly became one of the best films in the MCU so far. And now, it can be yours to watch over and over.
There are a few reasons why Captain America: Civil War is an impressive feat in filmmaking. The biggest being that it combines so many characters from the previous twelve films and manages not to overcomplicate the plot. In addition to introducing new characters, such as Black Panther and Spider-Man, the film doesn’t waste time on backstories that won’t pay off until future films. It’s a complete, solid story.
While Civil War is the third Captain America film, it’s not merely a direct follow up to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Avengers: Age of Ultron is required viewing for Tony Stark’s story arch, and while he isn’t the title character, his plot is equally as important as Steve Rogers'.
Captain America: Civil War succeeds in every way, which serves to only highlight the failure of Warner Bros. Batman vs. Superman (both films pit beloved superheroes against each other). Marvel is releasing Civil War on Blu-Ray on September 13th. This review covers the basic Blu-Ray release, although it is also available on DVD or in a 3D/2D Blu-Ray/Digital HD combo pack. The latter option future proofs your purchase and is the only one that comes with a digital copy.
Captain America: Civil War has a varying color palette. The majority uses muted earth tones and lots of black, which is handled expertly on this Blu-Ray disc. When bright colors are employed, particularly during the amazing airport fight sequence, they jump off the screen. Details are crisp and clear, you can literally see the stitching on Cap’s costume.
The primary audio track is a DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio mix. It’s an enveloping mix that utilizes the full sound field effectively, with lots of subwoofer action during the fight sequences. Other audio options include a 2.0 descriptive track for the visually impaired and 5.1 mixes in French and Spanish.
- United We Stand, Divided We Fall – The Making of Captain America: Civil War Part One (22:25) – The cast and creative team talk about the origins of the Civil War story and how the characters found themselves on both sides of the war.
- United We Stand, Divided We Fall – The Making of Captain America: Civil War Part Two (23:18) – The feature continues with a look at the romance between Scarlet Witch and Vision, fighting styles and the film’s villain.
- Captain America: The Road to Civil War (4:11) – A featurette exploring Cap’s journey so far leading up to Civil War.
- Iroan Man: The Road to Civil War (4:27) – A similar exploration is given for Tony Stark.
- Open Your Mind: Marvel’s Doctor Strange – Exclusive Sneak Peek (4:02) – Kevin Feige and the cast of Doctor Strange introduce some of the concepts from the upcoming film.
- Deleted and Extended Scenes (7:52) – One extended scene (Extended Peggy’s Funeral) and three deleted scenes (Zemo Meets Doctor Broussard, “You are Not Used to the Truth,” and “Gotta Get Me One of Those”) are presented individually or as a “play all” feature.
- Gag Reel (2:53) – The actors goof up and goof off in this blooper reel.
- Audio Commentary (2:27:41) – Directors Anthony and George Russo and writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely lead this feature commentary. It’s very revealing into the writing process and also reveals some hidden easter eggs.
Packaging & Design
Captain America: Civil War comes in a standard-sized Blu-Ray case. There is no slipcover with this standard release, but fans looking for better packaging should look at the 3D/2D/Digital combo pack which has different cover art and a an embossed slipcover with the first pressing. The only insert is a code for 150 points through Digital Movie Rewards (this version does NOT come with a digital copy).
The disc opens with an ad for Doctor Strange, an Audi/Civil War car commercial, and a mobile game called Marvel Contest of Champions. Selecting Sneak Peeks from the menu replays these same ads. The menu features Bucky’s prison with footage from the film projected on the wall.
Captain America: Civil War kicks Phase Three off with a bang, an epic film that hits all its marks. The absence of a digital copy or even a DVD with this basic release is confusing, but a more premium version does exist for fans who want more options. My personal recommendation is to pay the extra $2 for the 3D combo pack to get the digital copy.