‘Winter Soldier’ Has 1 of the Best Fight Scenes in the MCU, According to Fans

It’s worth going back a little farther in time to reanalyze some of the earlier MCU/Avenger movies, particularly the ones with Captain America. In many ways 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier kicked off a better era for the Avengers saga since it was the first one with the Russo Brothers involved.

They managed to take the fighting sequences to new levels. However, it’s that element many fans cite as being unique compared to the plethora of CGI the MCU relied on later.

Is it true The Winter Soldier took things back to basics in the fight scenes? Taking some time to reanalyze the elements of what made the film work might provide a guidepost for the new trend of returning to more practical effects in movies/TV.

Kevin Feige speaks onstage
Kevin Feige | Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney

Did ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ save Phase Two of the MCU?

Fans have been taking to social media to exclaim how undervalued The Winter Soldier was in the long list of MCU films. When it released in 2014, Phase Two was two films in, though with some mixed reviews for titles like Iron Man 3.

Hiring the Russos to come in and direct was the best thing Marvel did, even though Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely were already ensconced at Marvel as writers. Properly staging battle scenes made all the difference in how believable these films would become. Fortunately, the Russos had a plan to bring a new type of battle choreography.

As fans have noted on places like Reddit, The Winter Soldier has one exciting battle sequence still not getting nearly enough praise. It’s when Cap and Winter Soldier (Bucky Barnes) battle one another before latter regains his memory as former’s close WWII friend.

During the battle between the two, there was almost a ninja quality to it, proving how skilled the Russos were in bringing practicality to how a fight sequence should be staged.

The skill of flipping knives

When going back to view that Cap/Winter Soldier fight, it’s worth taking time to see the details of how it was put together. Seeing Cap flipping a knife in his hand looked like something out of a martial arts movie. Then there was Winter Soldier throwing his shield, which ultimately ended up darting into the back end of a van.

Both characters ultimately end up in an amazing knife fight. However, they both resort to some ninja kicks and Cap ultimately throwing Bucky against a nearby vehicle.

From all appearances, no stunt doubles were involved, unless the knife flips were done by someone other than Chris Evans. A featurette on the Blu-Ray of The Winter Soldier shows most of the fight sequences were definitely done by Evans and Sebastian Stan.

Latter worked extremely hard to get himself in good enough shape to take on the fight choreography.

All told, the fighting in the film truly went back to the basics, something not seen as often in ensuing MCU films. Is it because it was too risky for injuries, or just a complacency in relying more on CGI?

Should future MCU films go back to more practical fighting sequences?

To explain why fans love this fight scene so much, it’s worth noting many say it’s because there was no digital trickery involved. Also, it was a fight right here on earth and not involving galactic travel as later films explored.

Even more so, the expressions seen by Evans and Stan during the fight were intense, showing they were feeling the physical aspects of getting the moves right. A few say they loved Evans’ expressions when throwing his punches/kicks since it made the fighting look more real.

Will future MCU films go back to more scenes like it? Practical effects are starting to make a comeback to bring a better sense of reality in a film. Even if the big-screen films don’t, there’s a good chance the Disney+ shows will.

Thanks to The Falcon and The Winter Soldier being set firmly on earth, it might bring back touches of The Winter Soldier everyone remembers.