Captain America (1990)


With the new version of the story released last year, a lot of people have forgotten the 1990 version of the story as they have the 1970’s TV movies.  The 1990 version of Captain America was put together by Menahem Golan’s short lived 21st Century Film Corporation.  Golan’s company was formed after he lost control of Cannon Films (Death Wish sequels, American Ninja and various Chuck Norris epics) and to be honest Captain America is all but in name a Cannon film.  That should give you some idea of how Marvel’s character would be put on screen.

The story we all know is that Steve Rogers (Matt Salinger), the sickly all American boy is transformed into Cap and gets frozen in ice after battling The Red Skull.  Waking up in the 90’s Rogers learns that Skull is still alive and living in Italy (well, filmed in the old Yugoslavia actually).  So we now have a story involving the President of America, a shady General and the Skull still wanting to take over the world.

Director Albert (Cyborg, Dollman) Pyun does well with obviously a low budget (Golan was infamous for cutting costs and penny pinching like he did on poor old Superman IV)    The film is quite charming once you get past the naff music score and some very scary late 80’s fashions.  It also has a great supporting cast including Ronny Cox, Ned Beatty and Darren McGavin.  What’s also terrific is that Cap’s uniform is cool and he uses his iconic shield a fair amount staying faithful to the source material.

I haven’t seen it in years (since the old 20/20 vision video release in a big silver box) and it’s nice to see it being released now after such a long time being unavailable.  It’s sitting proudly on my shelf next to the Bill Bixby Hulk DVD’s and my collection of Nick Hammond 1970’s Spidey films, now there is a series that should be released.

  • Starring Matt Salinger  Ronny Cox  Ned Beatty  Scott Paulin
  • Director Albert Pyun
  • Distributor 101 Films