Captain America and the Red Skull

Captain America and the Red Skull

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Captain America and the Red Skull
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Brief Synopsis:
Steve Rogers is transformed into Captain America, the star-spangled super soldier who must save the world from the mad Red Skull, leader of the Nazi deep science division Hydra.
This edit presents a self-contained story that is higher on drama, cohesion, and tension, by making two major changes: Cap is no longer frozen and awoken in the present day, and Red Skull’s presence is edited so he feels more mysterious and formidable. In addition, the aftermath of Bucky’s death is recut for greater emotional impact, and the climax is recut to give Steve a more logical reason for crashing the plane.
Other Sources:
Captain America: The First Avenger Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Alan Silvestri)
Release Information
Editing Details:
Note: This fanedit is not in continuity with The Avengers or the wider "Marvel Cinematic Universe" and will instead be followed by a direct sequel fanedit called Captain America and the Winter Soldier.
Cuts and Additions:
00.00.00 - Added fanedit disclaimer.
00.00.45 - Cut Cap frozen in present day. Revealing the film’s ending drains tension from the story.
00.00.55 - Extended “Tonsberg, Norway” location title.
00.14.28 - Moved scene of Zola and Schmidt discussing the blue cube so that it opens scene of Schmidt killing Hitler’s check-in committee (new position is 00.37.08). The scene's original placement distracts from Steve’s story early on in the film.
00.15.30 - Trimmed "Much better" from Phillips' line "And because they are gonna get better... Much better." The joke is funnier when it's subtler.
00.16.52 - Rearranged shots so Steve unhinges the flagpole before being told to fall back in line.
00.20.11 - Trimmed Erskine telling Steve about Schmidt, mainly to remove one of the strange cutaways of Schmidt.
00.31.11 - Moved reaction shot of Stark so he removes his sunglasses after Steve's new body is revealed (new position is 00.31.22).
00.32.07 - Cut Erskine noticing the spy before the explosion at the lab, which ruined the surprise of the explosion.
00.38.17 - Cut Zola and Schmidt testing the blue cube. This scene makes too much of the blue cube’s power, which barely affects the plot or gives Hydra any real advantage. The cube’s power is now first seen when Schmidt harnesses its energy to kill Hitler’s check-in committee.
00.40.37 - Inserted shot of blue cube machine powering down after use.
00.52.31 - Cut Schmidt talking to Zola at factory, so his confrontation with Steve at factory later is a surprise.
00.52.40 - Cut Dugan’s line “You know Fritz, one of these days I’m gonna have a stick of my own.” Dugan appears to speak this line to a Hydra guard, which is odd.
00.56.15 - Cut Schmidt watching security cameras at factory.
00.56.42 - Cut Schmidt activating self-destruct at factory.
00.56.42 - Added “Self-destruct sequence initiated” voiceover when Zola is running to escape the factory.
00.57.06 - Cut Schmidt retrieving blue cube at factory.
00.59.20 - Cut Steve hitting Schmidt a second time on the factory catwalk. The scuffle now ends with Schmidt knocking Steve over, which makes Schmidt look more formidable.
01.00.04 - Cut Steve asking Schmidt why he’s running. This line makes Schmidt look like a coward, and the Red Skull reveal has more impact if Steve is speechless.
01.10.56 - Cut Peggy’s line “You still don’t know a bloody thing about women.” Nothing we can’t figure out ourselves.
01.12.45 - Moved Red Skull driving to the destroyed Hydra base so that it ends the war montage (new position is 01.14.17).
01.13.41 - Cut shot of Cap looking concerned directly after the cameraman sees his photo of Peggy. This is a strange thing to include in a film that's being screened. The photo of Peggy should just feel incidental.
01.14.17 - Cut second slow motion shot of Cap jumping off exploding tank. This felt excessive.
01.14.21 - Cut Red Skull screaming “You are failing!” so he doesn't look pathetic.
01.16.48 - Cut Zola on train. We shouldn’t see him before the heroes capture him.
01.17.09 - See above.
01.17.37 - See above.
01.18.18 - After Bucky’s death, rearranged scene order: 1) Steve mourning; 2) Red Skull speech; 3) Zola interrogation; 4) War room. This new scene order gives Bucky’s death more weight.
01.19.53 - Cut Peggy’s line “You won’t be alone” so that bar scene flows into Red Skull’s speech better.
01.20.53 - Trimmed Zola interrogation so that we enter the scene when Philips sits down.
01.22.12 - Cut Phillips’ line “That would be awkward” during interrogation. Felt like an anachronistic use of the word “awkward.”
01.22.36 - Cut Zola talking about Schmidt during interrogation. Zola has no reason to be so melodramatic after being so mousy for the rest of the film, and we learn everything he says elsewhere in the film.
01.22.37 - Recut war room scene to flow better following previous scene.
01.25.10 - Added short quote of “Rain Fire Upon Them” music when Cap is escorted into Hydra base.
01.25.48 - Cut Red Skull’s line “But he gave you everything.” Erskine didn’t give Steve a stronger serum – the serum was simply unperfected when Schmidt used it.
01.26.03 - Added bass hits when Red Skull punches Cap, to make punches seem harder.
01.28.22 - Cut Cap's line "You're late." This is a very cliched callback to Peggy saying the same line earlier.
01.28.39 - Cut pilots boarding the Valkyrie. In this edit, the bombs are not flown – they are launched automatically. This change gives Cap a better reason to crash the Valkyrie.
01.29.19 - Cut Cap swinging on chain. This is weirdly edited and the slow motion looks cheap.
01.31.20 - Cut Cap fighting pilots and piloting a bomb.
01.31.20 - Inserted Red Skull setting timers for the bomb launch.
01.31.50 - Cut Red Skull’s line “You don’t give up, do you?” He should be focused on trying to kill Cap, and this callback is way too on-the-nose.
01.31.58 - Tightened editing in Cap vs. Red Skull fight to give it more impact.
01.32.13 - See above.
01.33.57 - Recoloured shot of Red Skull so that blinding light is momentarily red rather than blue.
01.34.29 - Inserted shot of bomb labeled “New York.”
01.34.51 - Inserted launch countdown when Cap is piloting the Valkyrie.
01.36.37 - Inserted launch countdown and shot of bomb bay door opening.
01.39.22 - Cut Cap waking up in present day. This scene diminishes the drama of his sacrifice, spoils the charm of the film’s period setting, and has no thematic relation to the rest of the story.
01.41.41 - Replaced “Captain America: The First Avenger” in titles sequence with faneditor credit and fanedit name.
01.48.14 - Replaced “Captain America will return in The Avengers” tag with “Captain America will return” tag.
01.48.28 - Cut Avengers trailer after end credits. This movie shouldn’t feel like set-up for another movie.
Bomb Launch Preview

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I'm continually impressed by the skills of the fan-editors on this site, and Problem Eliminator is no exception. I've only dabbled in film editing and the results have been sub-optimal. Problem Eliminator, on the other hand, takes the source material and deftly puts it together as he likes. Video edits are smooth, and music cues line up perfectly. If I wasn't so familiar with the original film, I would never notice the edits.

I went into this edit with high hopes, as I've always felt that the weakest moments of Captain America: The First Avenger are the present-day scenes. I understand their necessity in the greater MCU, but they detract from the main part of the film: Cap's origin story and adventures in WWII. Removing these bits and making the film a pure 1940s adventure seems like a good thing. Unfortunately, I think Problem Eliminator went a little too far. Many of the little scenes he cut are some of my favorite moments from the film. For example, the big fight at the end is trimmed extensively so that it feels rushed and too quickly resolved. This paradoxically has the effect of making Cap seem like both more and less of a hero: a super-superhero would quickly dispatch a villain, but in the full version you get to see Cap doing all sorts of hero stuff, like fighting a Hydra goon on a flying bomb.

Problem Eliminator is planning a fan-edit of The Winter Soldier, and it will be interesting to see how those two movies hold together. While this edit didn't quite work for me, I do recommend it as an alternate view of The First Avenger, and I'm looking forward to see how he tackles Winter Soldier.

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