Captain America is a super soldier and a fierce warrior here’s how actor Chris Evans evolved Cap’s fighting style throughout his MCU journey
Ever since superheroes transitioned from the comic books to movies, adapting them properly to the big screens has become walking a thin line. Movies need to show the heroes as mighty as they do on paper.
CGI development needed to improve as fast as society was changing. Even though the initial superhero movies did their best with the technology available at the time, still they weren’t even worth the attention of movie critics. At the start of the 21st century however CGI reached new heights and science-fiction movies raved with interesting concepts.
Captain America: Weapon X
By the time Marvel’s Captain America: The First Avenger premiered in 2011, there was enough CGI knowledge to make the producers ruin a movie that should have been a classic. The movie made a solid 176 million dollars at the box office, despite an underwhelming review from fans.
Played by actor Chris Evans, Captain America’s story is one of a scrawny army-reject who volunteers for an experimental super-soldier serum test and becomes superhuman. From super strength, to speed and excellent fighting techniques, the serum had created the perfect soldier.
Cap’s various fighting styles
Captain America is a Marvel Universe legend when it comes to hand to hand fights. He is trained in more than 160 forms of martial arts. Including boxing, wing chin, muay Thai, taijutsu, MMA, judo, Aiki Jutsu, Aikido, jujutsu and Brazilian jujutsu. He is the super soldier and hence a fierce warrior.
Even though training for the role was obviously going to be rigorous, it wasn’t new waters for Evans with the actor having been on the cast of The Fantastic Four and playing villain in 2010’s Scott Pilgrim vs The World.
Under topnotch gym instructor, Simon Waterson, Evans began major muscle rebuilding and buffing. He also had to take classes in gymnastics to improve his movement and dexterity.
Russo’s Video Game Touch
By the time the sequel Captain America: Winter Soldier was in the works, there wasn’t really much anticipation from fans, especially considering how averagely its predecessor performed. Evans however, had been thinking about improvements that could be made to his character.
But not until he played the Captain America videogame did he realize what the character needed. “There’s a fluidity and it’s very acrobatic.” He said. “It’s very aerial. He uses his environment, and it’s almost this beautiful, smooth dance.”
He proceeded to speak to the movie directors and found out that the Russo brothers had already been planning to model the opening scene of the movie after a battleship battle scene from the video game.
Thus Evans began refining Captain America’s fighting style again. This meant he had to do even more rigorous training to be able to improve his speed and fluidity. Added to his gymnastics classes, Evans also began to take aerobic classes to develop a certain level of balance. The Russo brothers directing the movie decided it was best to let Cap get more physical and use less CGI, except in the climax scenes, of course.
This meant Chris Evans had to add mixed martial arts training to his roster. He spent a few months mastering modern fighting techniques such as Karate, Jiu-jitsu, Parkour gymnastics amongst others.
The decision to refine Cap’s fighting styles based on video game paid off tremendously as Winter Soldier went on to gross over 200 million dollars at the box office surprising critics and fans.
His displays of strength were more realistic; he was fast, fluid, and the boomerang connection with his shield was seamless. An Honest Trailers team had even referred to him as “cool” in one of their trailers. With Winter Soldier registering a huge success, it laid the foundation for a defined development path for Captain America.
Pushing Captain America and Chris Evans Limits
By the time Age of Ultron was gearing up for production, it was time to scale up and explore the limits of Cap’s abilities some more – especially when Iron Man seemed to be getting weekly upgrades! Evans approached writer/director Joss Whedon and they discussed the character’s development. They decided to add more intensity and strength to Cap’s fighting abilities while staying in the limits of what was permissible. He had really cool fight scenes and even a standoff with Ultron. Civil War didn’t provide any significant improvements to Captain America’s fight sequences.
It wasn’t until Endgame before he received a major upgrade when he got the ability to wield Mjolnir. Two sequences in the movie show Cap at the peak of his powers one when he is fighting himself and in the final battle with Thanos.
Apart from his sheer determination and will power, coupled with having a good heart, questions often arise as to the extent of his relevance.
Ultimately, Cap stands as the embodiment of leadership and at certain times, it can be perceived that the sheer power of his will spurs everyone on somehow.
Avengers: Endgame saw Rogers hand over the Captain America mantle to his friend Sam/Falcon who is set to wield the shield in future instalments of the franchise. It will be interesting to see what kind of upgrades or perks the new Captain America’s fighting style will have.