12. Turning 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' Into a Political Thriller
Until now, the Marvel Studios movies had been entertaining and thrilling, but largely without any underlying theme or subtext. That changed with Captain America's second outing, which thrust the patriotic warhorse directly into the heart of a vast government conspiracy that involved surveillance and the highly unconstitutional targeting of citizens. The premise could have been ripped from headlines about the NSA and unmanned drones, giving the movie a resonance and immediacy that helped propel it to the top tier of Marvel films.