I saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier with a friend recently, and quite enjoyed it. There’s all the usual stuff; action, implausible explosions and defiance of the laws of physics, and some snappy dialogue. But there was a richer political framework than I’d expected.
[Spoiler alert: Large parts of this discussion relates to key themes and scenes in the movie’s ending].
The titular villain isn’t actually that prominent; he’s a tool, used by other people, villains behind the scene. And their grand plan? To collect enormous amounts of data about people, to pre-emptively strike potential threats. And the response?
The Black Widow uploads all of ‘Shield’s’ data.
There’s been more written about this aspect of The Winter Soldier (here, and here, for example). It’s still an action movie; not life-changing, and with shortcomings (why are his clothes dry right after he’s dived into a river? and other questions), but it’s a little better than the average action film.