*Warning the following is all spoilers*
In all honesty I was devastated for Iron Man and started rooting for him towards the end of the movie. The Civil War aspects of the story certainly fall by the wayside because Captain America was right and Iron Man was wrong. But he wasn’t. Ultimately the freedom provided of unsanctioned Avenging affords Steve the opportunity to do what he wants. The movie plays the premise out through the role of the Winter Soldier and his capture becomes all-important, as it should be for a known assassin, a suspect of a terrorist attack and a murderer during the course of this film. Steve is arrogantly defiant throughout the course of these events and that only he should and can be allowed to protect Bucky because he was once his friend. He flounces in the face of superiority and is certainly no longer acting as the soldier he once was. The Sokovia Accords are just legislation as there does need to be some accountability and consensus for worldwide policing. Steve disagrees because he is willing to take the risks of lost lives to execute his moral judgement. He is the philosopher leader who wishes to preside over self-motivated politicians, which include the President of the United States and the King of Wakanda. With where the story goes, he is ultimately correct because Ross was wrong and Bucky was innocent. However I am sure that if a fair prosecution was carried out, the right evidence would have been located and Buck released. This is how the justice system is supposed to function, and Rogers operates outside of the law because he is arrogant to think he knows best. Unfortunately Baron Zemo confuses the plot line because he manipulates incredibly successfully and reveals the cracks in the task force. Seriously how is a psychological evaluation the first part of investigation for a terrorist? Meanwhile Tony is having even more personal crises…
Iron Man 3 saw Tony retire and come to terms with the person he is, putting his anxieties to rest by destroying all of his suits. He finally decided to settle with Pepper and the film served as the character resolution the series needed. Unfortunately Age of Ultron happened and Tony made a mistake leading to almost worldwide collapse. This must play on his conscious as at the beginning of this movie we notice that Pepper is no longer with him. Instantly we see the great character work from Iron Man 3 undone. He is then brought fully into meltdown mode as a mother unashamedly holds him responsible for the death of her son in Sokovia. I would genuinely like to see how Cap would handle this conversation, as the blame also lies with him. Steve seems to reconcile his guilt significantly faster than Tony and Wanda but not a single person calls him up on it. He remains dignified in his defiance and is almost mocking in tone when inquiring about Iron Man’s personal life. When Tony looks to himself as an unrestrained and unfettered danger to society, Steve does not.
Iron Man is constantly inventing and his ideas have repercussions whereas Captain America is a soldier, there to save the day. Inherently Stark is a bigger danger but he realises it and opts to join the government to control his own activities. This is a noble and honourable motivation and should only be applauded. Unfortunately the film does not see it that way because not only does he have to be wrong, he has to be tortured further. In finding out that Bucky killed his parents and that Rogers knew, we see a final confrontation that if fuelled by anger and love. Steve loves Bucky and will protect him at all costs and fails to placate Tony, who is in a rage filled frenzy. Do not forget that War Machine, Tony’s best friend, has already been paralysed by this confrontation so Iron Man is really not having a good day. The film is deliberately cynical towards Tony Stark and portrays him as a mad man, so much so that Steve fails to show any genuine sympathy or elements of kinship. He focuses on what he knows best, how to beat him and does so. He walks away with his best friend in his arms and drops the shield that Tony’s father created. In the background is a broken Iron Man shouting petty retorts like a sore loser. I was left distraught at the end of the confrontation, and even more so when we see Tony helping Rhodey with his rehabilitation. These feelings amplified further when he reads the sanctimonious letter from Cap, but at least Steve admits his failings as a friend. With a few subtle adjustments it would be easy to turn Cap into a bad guy, especially as he breaks out his Avenger friends from prison with a diamond smile on his face. Alternatively it would take only a couple key lines of dialogue for Rogers to show he cares for Tony, even refuse to beat him into submission. That would be exceptionally difficult given how intent Tony was on killing Buck, but let us not forget this is Captain America we are talking about.
Rogers may have finally lost the love of his life, but he gains another and many friends. Stark realises how his parents were brutally murdered and his best friend is crippled, whilst the remaining Avengers all take their stand with Steve. As War Machine says very eloquently, he believes in the Sokovia accords and what they stand for. Principally they are a worthwhile piece of regulation, as long as the intentions of the people upon high are noble in origin. But that is not what this movie would have you believe, but I guess after all it is Captain America’s movie and Iron Man has already had his trilogy. Oh well then…let’s go #TeamCap!