Saturday, April 17, 2021

Oddworld: Soulstorm Review – A NEGATIVE Batch Of Brew

Playing Oddworld: Soulstorm is as arduous as Abe’s quest to liberate his Mudoken brethren from slavery. Each step is a supreme test of patience as you methodically guide your followers through challenging hazards, sweating over the fact that one slip-up could unravel all your effort. If you enjoy putting up with that old-school challenge, you might love this journey. However, if you’re a newcomer or a fan that believes this style of platformer hasn’t aged very well, turn back now. Soulstorm doesn’t do enough to modernize the series’ tedious gameplay, and a litany of severe technical hiccups spoil Abe’s attempted comeback. A reimagining of Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus, Soulstorm’s gameplay remains largely the same: you recruit and guide followers through 2D platforming stages littered with dangers. As charming as the classic Oddworld games are, they can be frustratingly difficult and that hasn’t changed much in Soulstorm. Most Slig enemies and other hazards mow Abe down instantly, and I was infuriated by how little wiggle room I had to correct course when things went sideways. Abe drops so fast that it makes the health meter seem like a cruel tease. While playing Soulstorm, I often felt like I was walking on eggshells because of that high price of failure, retracing every step, re-recruiting every Mudokon, and carefully guiding them through a gauntlet of foes is soul-crushing when it all falls apart in seconds. Dying to unexpected perils, like being suddenly gunned down by off-screen enemies, feels cheap and happens way too often. A crafting system serves as Soulstorm’s biggest addition, but it doesn’t feel necessary. You must repeatedly gather the same ingredients every time you die (by searching lockers, trash cans, and fallen foes), which wore me down in a hurry after repeatedly replaying certain sections. The crafted tools themselves, like proximity mines, smoke screens, even a flamethrower, do add a welcomed element of flexibility and improvisation to gameplay. Dropping smoke screens to create hiding spots anywhere is nice, but I wished I didn’t have to make these items myself and grew tired of digging around the same spots over and over.   Even when Soulstorm’s difficulty eases up, the gameplay is bland. The action feels largely the same from previous games in the series, and that formula doesn’t evolve significantly beyond the first few hours. Even the more interesting sequences, like facing down a giant mech aboard a speeding train, are far too punishing to be fun. I’m glad that Abe controls better now (he even has a double jump), but the controls still have a mushy unresponsiveness that makes entertaining actions, like possessing Sligs, feel like a hassle. The controls also lead to additional deaths because Abe doesn’t act as swiftly as you need him to, especially during the ill-fitting, overly demanding combat arenas that pit you against waves of baddies while you try to protect fleeing Mudokens. Soulstorm would be a tough recommendation for anyone outside of diehard fans if it performed flawlessly, but I encountered several progress-sabotaging bugs (even after installing the big day-one patch) that should scare off even those players. When I died, Mudokens sometimes failed to respawn alongside me even though my tally indicated they were still alive and under my command. That meant I lost out on turning in followers that I’d spent ages trying to safely liberate, which negatively affected my overall quarma – a vital metric in determining which of the four endings you get.  Abe occasionally gets stuck in environmental geometry, forcing a restart. At one point, I fell into an infinite loop. One escape portal permanently vanished once I reached it, forcing me to abandon followers. A gun in a late-game turret sequence failed to shoot despite working fine in previous segments. After multiple restarts, I randomly discovered that clicking the right stick “fixed” the weapon for some reason, allowing it to fire. I spent over an hour trying to lead a large group of followers through a particularly challenging area, but once I opened the exit door an invisible wall prevented me from moving forward. I was forced to restart this entire, lengthy sequence twice before the exit worked properly. Soulstorm’s gameplay pushed my patience to its limits, but these bugs sent me over the edge and made me nervous every time I started a new level. “What on Earth is going to screw me over this time?” I regularly asked myself. Soulstorm’s faults are a shame because its narrative and presentation brought a smile to my face. Abe and his pals are goofy, delightful underdogs I couldn’t help but root for. The enjoyable story is packed with heart, and the cutscenes look great. I wanted to welcome Abe into a new generation of gaming with open arms, but Soulstorm fails to make a case for why its brand of cinematic platforming works today. In fact, Soulstorm only reaffirmed that Abe’s past adventures are best viewed with rose-colored glasses.
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    Disney+ May 2021 Movies and TV Titles Revealed

    Disney+ May 2021 movies and TV titles revealed!Disney+ has revealed the full list of new movies and TV titles available on the streaming service this coming May 2021. This includes the debut of Lucasfilm’s newest animated series Star Wars: The Bad Batch and the second season premiere of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. Next month will also see the world premiere of Disney’s newest live-action feature Cruella starring Emma Stone as the iconic 101 Dalmatian villain. It will simultaneously debut in theaters and on Disney+ with Premier Access for a one-time additional fee.RELATED: Disney+ Launchpad Trailer Showcases New Live-Action Short FilmsLet us know in the comments what you are most excited to watch out of the Disney+ May 2021 new additionsAvailable May 4Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Episode 101 – Premiere – Special DateAvailable May 7Disney Wander over Yonder (S1)Disney Wander over Yonder (S2)Everyone’s HeroFlicka 2Wild Hearts Can’t Be BrokenFantastic Four: Rise of the Silver SurferBig Shot – Episode 104 “Great in the Living Room”The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers – Episode 107 “Pong Hockey”Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Episode 102Available May 14Disney Special Agent Oso (S1)Disney Special Agent Oso (S2)Disney Special Agent Oso: Three Healthy Steps (S1)X-Men: The Last StandLife Below Zero (S15)Race to the Center of the Earth (S1)High School Musical: The Musical: The Series – Season Two PremiereHigh School Musical: The Musical: The Series – Episode 201 – “New Year’s Eve”Big Shot – Episode 105 “This is our House”The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers – Episode 108 “Change on the Fly”Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Episode 103Available May 21Disney Big City Greens (S2)Disney Junior Mickey Mouse Mixed-Up Adventures (S1)Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverbeastFury Files (Interstitials)Ice Road Rescue (S5)Running Wild with Bear Grylls (S6)Inside Pixar: Unpacked – Batch PremiereUnpacked: About Time – Director: Erica MilsomHow can the passage of time be utilized as a tool for emotional storytelling? Narrator W. Kamau Bell breaks down how time can becomes its own character in Pixar films, looking at period pieces such as Brave and the tearjerking passage of time in Up.Unpacked: Everybody Loves a Villain – Director: Tony KaplanFrom Ernesto de La Cruz to Lotso to Hopper, foes of all shapes and sizes are essential to many of our favorite Pixar movies. But what makes a good villain? Narrator W. Kamau Bell digs into why we love to hate our favorite antagonists and what makes them so complicated.Unpacked: The Squint Test – Director: Tony KaplanPixar characters strive to strike a balance between realistic and caricatured. Narrator W. Kamau Bell explains how basic shapes and drawings influence the character design and story of favorite films such as Up, Ratatouille, and The Incredibles.Unpacked: Inner Drive – Director: Erica MilsomBeyond the world of Cars, vehicles of all kinds have made their mark throughout Pixar’s films. Jump in and go for a ride with narrator W. Kamau Bell as he cruises through some of his favorite Pixar planes, trains, and Incredibiles.Unpacked: No Small Roles – Director: Tony KaplanTake a deep dive into the art of crowds animation. Each of your favorite Pixar characters live in worlds populated by fellow fish, cars, toys, and humans, but creating thousands of these fully animated background characters is no easy feat. Join narrator W. Kamau Bell in understanding how Pixar adds thousands of background characters into every film.High School Musical: The Musical: The Series – Episode 202 “Typecasting”Big Shot – Episode 106 “Carlsbad Crazies”The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers – Episode 109 “Head Games”Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Episode 104Available May 28Bluey Shorts (S2)Disney Sydney to the Max (S3 – Episodes 1-8)Kingdom of the Polar Bears (S1)Wicked Tuna (S10 – Episode 1-7)Cruella – Premiere (with Premier Access)Launchpad – Premiere (Collection of Six Short Live-Action Films)High School Musical: The Musical: The Series – Episode 203 “Valentine’s Day”Big Shot – Episode 107 “Kalm Korn”The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers – Episode 110 “State of Play” – Season FinaleStar Wars: The Bad Batch – Episode 105

    Watched in the home: Top Streaming Films for the Week of April 10

    Watched at Home: Top streaming films for the week of April 10Welcome back, fellow couch potatoes, to another edition of DEG’s Watched at Home Top 20.  This week was, well, more or less similar to last week. Wonder Woman 1984 took the top spot again and seems to be engaged in a never-ending “mortal kombat” with Tom Hanks’ News of the World (No. 2) and The Croods: A New Age (No. 3). Will anything unseat this dynamic trio in the coming weeks?RELATED: Carey Mulligan Joins Adam Sandler in Netflix’s Spaceman MovieElsewhere, Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar made its debut at No. 10, while the Nicolas Cage dark comedy Willy’s Wonderland popped in at No. 11, giving the actor two flicks on the list if you count his voice work on Croods. There has to be some kind of an award for this achievement, right?Otherwise, several titles just rotated spots. Harry Potter: Complete 8 Film Collection moved up one spot to No. 8, while Christopher Nolan’s Tenet plummeted to No. 20. Perhaps the best part about this week is Promising Young Woman, which made it back into the top 5 for the first time in weeks — it’s a great flick if you haven’t seen it, by the way.Until next time!DEG’S Top 201. Wonder Woman 1984 (Warner Bros.)2. News of the World (Universal)3. The Croods: A New Age (Universal)4. Monster Hunter (Sony Pictures)5. Promising Young Woman (Universal)6. Girl in the Basement (A+E)7. Greenland (Universal/STX)8. Harry Potter: Complete 8 Film Collection (Warner Bros.)9. Soul (Disney)10. Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar (Lionsgate)11. Willy’s Wonderland (Screen Media Films)12. Wrong Turn: The Foundation (Lionsgate)13. Let Him Go (Universal)14. Yellowstone S3 (Paramount)15. Godzilla: King of the Monsters (Warner Bros.)16. The Ten Commandments (Paramount)17. Yellowstone S1 (Paramount)18. Shadow in the Cloud (Vertical Entertainment)19. The Vault (Lionsgate)20. Tenet (Warner Bros.)MORE: Mondo Reveals Zack Snyder’s Justice League Soundtrack Box Set!

    Borat Supplemental Reportings Trailer Teases Never-Before-Seen Footage

    Borat Supplemental Reportings trailer teases never-before-seen footageComing off from the critical success of Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, Amazon Prime Video has released the official trailer for the comedy sequel’s multi-part special titled Borat Supplemental Reportings. It features never-before-seen footage that was cut from Sasha Baron Cohen-led  2020 mockumentary film. The video also teases extended scenes of Borat’s time with the two conspiracy theorists and Tutar’s babysitter Jeanise Jones as well as behind-the-scenes footage of when Baron Cohen almost got in danger during a far-right rally. The special currently has no release date, but it is expected to debut sometime this year. Check out the video in the player below!RELATED: Limited Series About U.S. Capitol Insurrection in the Works at ShowtimeJason Woliner directed Borat Subsequent Moviefilm from a screenplay written by Cohen, Anthony Hines, Dan Swimer, Peter Baynham, Erica Rivinoja, Dan Mazer, Jena Friedman, and Lee Kern. The movie was produced by Cohen, Monica Levinson, and Hines, while it was executive produced by Buddy Enright, Nicholas Hatton, Peter Baynham, Dan Mazer, and Stuart Miller.Unlike the first film, Sacha Baron Cohen’s iconic Kazakh journalist is now joined by his fifteen-year-old daughter Tutar, who breakout star Maria Bakalova played. The sequel follows Borat as he was sent to America on a mission to redeem his nation.RELATED: Amazon Prime Show The Boys Getting a Podcast for Season 2Borat 2 was an instant hit to critics and viewers and was streamed by millions of Amazon Prime subscribers during its opening weekend. It recently won two major Golden Globe Awards for Best Motion Picture-Musical or Comedy and Best Actor in a Comedy Film for Baron Cohen’s performance. The sequel is currently nominated for two Academy Awards including Best Adapted Screenplay and Maria Bakalova for Best Supporting Actress.

    Carey Mulligan Joins Adam Sandler in Netflix’s Spaceman Movie

    Carey Mulligan joins Adam Sandler in Netflix’s Spaceman movieAccording to Deadline, Oscar nominee Carey Mulligan has officially signed on to star opposite Adam Sandler in Netflix’s upcoming film adaptation titled Spaceman, based on Jaroslav Kalfar’s 2017 novel Spaceman of Bohemia. Mulligan will be playing the wife of Sandler’s astronaut. This project marks the acclaimed actress’ latest collaboration with streamer after working together on 2017’s Mudbound and the most recently released drama film, The Dig.Mulligan’s notable film credits include An Education, Never Let Me Go, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, Drive, The Great Gatsby, Suffragette, and Wildlife. For her leading performance in Emerald Fennell’s black comedy thriller Promising Young Woman,  she earned her second Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress and is also currently nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.RELATED: Netflix Unveils New Trailer & Poster for The Woman in the WindowSpaceman centers on an astronaut sent to the edge of the galaxy to collect mysterious ancient dust but instead finds his earthly life falling to pieces and must turn to one voice to help him put it back together, which happens to belong to a creature from the beginning of time lurking in his ship.Click here to purchase Kalfar’s 2017 novel!Emmy-wining filmmaker Johan Renck (Chernobyl) will be directing from a screenplay written by Colby Day. The film adaptation will be produced by Channing Tatum, Reid Carolin, Peter Kiernan and Michael Parets for Free Association, with Parets overseeing for the banner while Tim Headington, Lia Buman and Max Silva will oversee for Tango Entertainment. Finally, Ben Ormand, Renck and Barry Bernadi are set to executive produce.RELATED: Maestro: Carey Mulligan Joins Bradley Cooper’s Leonard Bernstein BiopicSandler currently has a major multi-film deal in place with Netflix, which has delivered such hits as Murder Mystery and Hubie Halloween. He is also currently working on another project with the streamer which is a sports comedy film titled Hustle. The film will be led by Sandler and Queen Latifah.

    Hotel Transylvania Attraction Opens in Russia’s Dream Island Theme Park

    Image Credit: Sony Pictures AnimationHotel Transylvania attraction opens in Russia’s Dream Island Theme ParkSony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania now has an attraction in Dream Island theme park in Moscow, Russia. The hit family-friendly spooky film series from Genndy Tartakovsky now has a global presence in various theme parks. Stars Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez and original voices are featured in the film’s dark ride located in Dubai, which takes park-goers through Drac’s hotel. Recently announced was another Hotel Transylvania attraction in Thailand as well.RELATED: Ghostbusters and Jumanji rides set for new Columbia Pictures Aquaverse ParkThe Sony Pictures Animation attraction at Dream Island will feature familiar characters inviting you inside Hotel Transylvania. Dracula has opened up the lavish resort to the human world and will allow visitors to meet its monster guests as they tour the spooky hotel. They get to go inside! There’s a foggy bridge over a moat to cross! We can’t wait to see more and get a look at the attention to detail taken to bring the amazing world Tartakovsky created to life. There will be more than 10 rooms to explore as Dracula will guide guests through his hotel.Here’s a first look at the attraction!Image Credit: Sony Pictures Animation“The attraction will be a worthy addition to our park. The work on the Hotel Transylvania theme area took more than 3 years, as we wanted to build a unique space for Russia, combining the latest technical and creative solutions to create a comedic horror experience suitable for the whole family,” said Ivan Scholl, technical director of Dream Island Theme Park. “We partnered with Sony Pictures in order to achieve an authentic experience that will be the first attraction of this level in Russia, in one of the world’s leading theme parks.”“In line with our growing Location Based Entertainment strategy, Dream Island Theme Park has done a fantastic job bringing this beloved brand to life and giving audiences the unique opportunity to transport themselves into the thrilling world of Hotel Transylvania,” said Jeffrey Godsick, EVP of Global Partnerships and Brand Management and Head of Location Based Entertainment at Sony Pictures Entertainment.In addition to the Hotel Transylvania attraction, guests will also find a “Tavern of Fear” snack bar, a “Vampire’s Bite” burger cafe and “Transylvania Treasures,” a gift store filled with Hotel Transylvania themed souvenirs and memorabilia. We already want a Tinkles the dog stuffed animal. Will there be capes?!Dream Island Theme Park is Europe’s largest indoor theme park located in Moscow. The new Sony Pictures Animation area is included in the Dream Island Theme Park entrance ticket price. Fast pass tickets are also available for the Hotel Transylvania attraction, specifically.RELATED: New Hotel Transylvania short Monster Pets released online!The final chapter of Sony Pictures Animation’s $1.3 billion family film franchise Hotel Transylvania: Transformania is set to open July 23, 2021.

    Mads Mikkelsen Joins Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones 5

    Mads Mikkelsen joins Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones 5After signing on last year to become Fantastic Beasts 3‘s new Grindelwald, Mads Mikkelsen has secured another high-profile project in the form of Lucasfilm’s long-in-development Indiana Jones 5. According to Deadline, the acclaimed Danish actor has been tapped to star opposite franchise star Harrison Ford and recently added female lead Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag) in James Mangold’s final installment to Indiana Jones. Further details about his character are still being kept under wraps but production is aiming to start this summer.RELATED: Bethesda & MachineGames Developing Indiana Jones Video Game!Indiana Jones 5 has been in development since 2016 with Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford returning in their respective roles. However, the project was constantly pushed back after multiple rewrites came from David Koepp, Jonathan Kasdan (son of Raiders of the Lost Ark writer Lawrence Kasdan), and Dan Fogelman.Last year, it was announced that Steven Spielberg, who directed all of the previous Indiana Jones films, had exited the project as director but will remain as a producer. Soon after, Oscar nominee James Mangold (Logan) has officially been tapped to direct the fifth installment. He is also co-writing the new screenplay along with Ford v Ferrari collaborators Jez and John-Henry Butterworth.The highly-anticipated sequel is currently scheduled to be released on July 29, 2022.RELATED: Indiana Jones 5 Slated for 2022 Release, Will Conclude Franchise Indiana Jones 5 will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, original franchise director Steven Spielberg, Frank Marshall and Simon Emanuel with John Williams returning to score the film, continuing a musical journey that began 40 years ago with Raiders of the Lost Ark.Famed archaeologist and explorer Indiana Jones was introduced in 1981’s Raiders of the Lost Ark – one of AFI’s 100 Greatest American Films of All Time – and later thrilled audiences in 1984’s Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, 1989’s Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, and 2008’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The four films have brought in nearly $2 billion at the global box office.

    Shock Exclusive: THE ENERGY Clip For the Shudder Ghost Thriller

    Shock Exclusive: The Power clip for the Shudder ghost thrillerShudder has provided us with an exclusive clip from writer/director Corinna Faith’s forthcoming ghost thriller film The Power, which is now available on the streaming service. Check it out in our player below!RELATED: CS Interview: Stevens & Crampton Talk Gothic Chiller Jakob’s Wife London, 1974. As Britain prepares for electrical blackouts to sweep across the country, trainee nurse Val (Rose Williams) arrives for her first day at the crumbling East London Royal Infirmary. With most of the patients and staff evacuated to another hospital, Val is forced to work the night shift, finding herself in a dark, near empty building. Within these walls lies a deadly secret, forcing Val to face both her own traumatic past and deepest fears in order to confront the malevolent force that’s intent on destroying everything around her.“While I was writing the script, I read a good description of what a ghost story classically is: a disturbed spirit has an issue that a protagonist, usually female, needs to understand and solve,” Corinna Faith said in a statement. “Then the spirit can rest in peace. This description resonated with me. I was already telling the story from a female point of view, and wanted the female experience to inform the horror elements. But I was writing during the explosion of resistance to silence and passivity that came with the Me Too movement. And it felt like the landscape was changing to some extent. The idea that an angry spirit could neatly be put to rest, made quiet at the end of a story, felt plain wrong. This gave me an interesting trajectory. I realized while we were filming that we were telling a story about the silence of girls. Voices made quiet. Then I realized, that without planning, I was telling the story of my journey to that moment too. It had taken many years, and changes in my own confidence and the confidence of the industry to get there. To allow my own voice to speak. Like the restless spirit, I’ve no intention of laying it to rest now.”RELATED: Jakob’s Wife Trailer & Poster: Who’s Your Master?The film stars Rose Williams, Shakira Rahman, Charlie Carrick, Diveen Henry, Gbemisola Ikumelo, Nuala McGowan, Emma Rigby and Theo Barklem-Biggs.Playing on our universal fear of the dark, The Power is a chilling supernatural thriller from BAFTA-nominated writer-director Corinna Faith and produced by Matthew James Wilkinson of Stigma Films and Rob Watson of Air Street Films.

    The Dry Trailer: Eric Bana Stars in IFC Films’ Crime Drama Pic

    The Dry trailer: Eric Bana stars in IFC Films’ crime drama picIFC Films has released the official trailer for their upcoming film adaptation of author Jane Harper’s best-selling debut novel The Dry starring Eric Bana (Black Hawk Down, Troy). The video features a federal agent as he investigates the possible connection between two murder cases involving two of his childhood friends. The film is scheduled to make its U.S. debut on May 24 in theaters and on VOD. While searching for the truth, he will also have to deal with the judgements and hatred thrown against him by the small town’s community Check out the video in the player below!RELATED: First Trailer & Poster for David Oyelowo’s The Water Man Debuts!The Dry is directed by Robert Connolly from a script he co-adapted with Harry Cripps. The mystery crime drama will be led by Eric Bana (The Time Traveler’s Wife, Dirty John), Genevieve O’Reilly (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Keir O’Donnell (Ray Donovan) and John Polson (Mission: Impossible II) along with Sam Corlett and Joe Klocek.Pick up a copy of the novel here!Federal Agent Aaron Falk returns to his home town after an absence of over twenty years to attend the funeral of his childhood friend, Luke, who allegedly killed his wife and child before taking his own life – a victim of the madness that has ravaged this community after more than a decade of drought.When Falk reluctantly agrees to stay and investigate the crime, he opens up an old wound – the death of 17-year-old Ellie Deacon. Falk begins to suspect these two crimes, separated by decades, are connected. As he struggles to prove not only Luke’s innocence but also his own, Falk finds himself pitted against the prejudice towards him and pent-up rage of a terrified community.RELATED: NEON Acquires Ryan Gosling-Led Mystery Thriller The ActorThe Dry is produced by Bana, Connolly, Bruna Papandrea, Steve Hutensky, and Jodi Matterson. Since its theatrical release in Australia earlier this year, the film has already made a big splash at the Australian box office during the pandemic and already is one of the top 15 grossing Australian films of all-time.

    CS Soapbox: Where’s Steve Rogers in The Falcon and the wintertime Soldier?

    CS Soapbox: Where’s Steve Rogers in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier?The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, a show obsessed with the legacy of “Captain America,” raises a tantalizing question: where is Steve Rogers, AKA the one true Captain America? Plot holes are a fact of life (or rather storytelling), especially in comic book movies where the laws of physics don’t apply. For those of us with too much time on our hands, plot holes keep us up at night as we refuse to accept the notion of budgetary restraints or that writers/actors are just regular people. For example, Avengers: Endgame -despite being fantastic entertainment- is riddled with inconsistencies. None more prevalent than its time travel logic and wherever old-man Steve came from. RELATED: CS Interview: The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Star Erin KellymanNear the end of Endgame, Steve -equipped with Mjölnir and the Infinity Stones- steps on a platform and prepares to travel through the Quantum Realm and return the aforementioned items to their proper place in the Multiverse. Side note: based upon a segment earlier in the film (when Hulk shits all over Back to the Future, saying “if you travel to the past, that past becomes your future, and your former present becomes the past, which can’t now be changed by your new future”), it doesn’t really make sense that Steve would be able to access all of the timelines each Avenger navigated during the “Time Heist.” Regardless, after Steve says his ominous goodbyes, Sam Wilson asks Professor Hulk, “how long is this gonna take?” “For him as long as he needs, for us 5 seconds.” Hulk pushes buttons, Cap disappears, and 5 seconds later he does not reappear. Instead, a now-elderly Rogers reappears on a bench nearby. Now, if he was allowed “as long as he needs,” why couldn’t he just return the stones, dance with Peggy Carter, grow old and come back on the platform in front of his friends? Having him appear off in the distance serves no purpose beyond dramatic effect. Fans assumed he just went to the past and lived in secret for ____ years, but directors Joe and Anthony Russo have since explained that Steve’s time with Peggy was in another timeline, meaning he used his remaining Pym Particles to hop back over to the main timeline and give Sam the shield (presumably after Peggy died… again) —a plot hole that is arguably solved by having him reappear on the time-travel platform Hulk operates. So, aside from undercutting his beautiful bookend, Steve isn’t in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier because he hopped back over to whatever timeline he domesticated with Peggy. RELATED: Listen to Henry Jackman’s First The Falcon and The Winter Soldier TrackWe don’t know what kind of life Steve had in the other timeline—whether or not he kept his existence a secret. Considering his total lack of regard for the space-time continuum, maybe he didn’t. Maybe, Steve is/was very much Captain America in the other timeline, de-icing his doppelgänger for twice the fun/patriotism (go Peggy). In this case, he probably would want to live out his days in the home he’d built, surrounded by his children and grandchildren. That said, is he friends with Sam and Bucky Barnes over there? Redacted. Who cares. All we care about is the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s favorite timeline. The less convoluted explanation is what we all expect: Steve is hiding out in the main timeline, doing Secret Avengers-esque things similar to his escapades with Sam and Natasha Romanoff following Captain America: Civil War. He might even be in Wakanda—we don’t know. However, his presumed presence on Earth (whatever numerical value it is) gives the writers free rein to bring Chris Evans back in some capacity if they ever feel so inclined. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier has made it clear that while not throwing the mighty shield, his whereabouts are seemingly known to Sam and Bucky who, similarly to how they aren’t going to ask Sharon Carter if she’s the Power Broker any time soon, will remain silent until a moment presents itself. Unless…RELATED: New Falcon and the Winter Soldier Featurette Continues Legacy of the ShieldSteve is dead. At the end of Endgame, he’s well over 100 years old (his biological age being 39 when he travels back 74 years to be with Peggy. Roughly). While fellow super soldier Isaiah Bradley is still kicking in episode 2 of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, this may not be the case for Steve. The series takes place months after the Blip and, if Steve did pass away, the service being held in his honor at the Smithsonian when Sam donates the shield makes sense. Although, if the writers were sure of this, they would have mentioned it. What they do posit is a moon theory. In episode 1, “New World Order,” Joaquin Torres mentions several conspiracy theories regarding Steve’s whereabouts, including the idea that he resides on a secret moon base. Sam laughs this off and insists this is not the case. However, space is very much a thing in the MCU; during the events of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Nick Fury is in space with the Skrulls prepping for Marvel’s Secret Invasion (among other things). Yes, the Inhumans have a secret base on the moon but that series failed and it’s unlikely they’ll reboot those characters so soon. It’s more likely that the “secret moon base” reference alludes to the Marvel Comics mini-series Original Sin—in which Uatu the Watcher (featured in Disney+ upcoming What If…?) is murdered, Nick Fury becomes the Multiverse’s new Watcher, and Bucky becomes Earth’s secret defender, “The Man on the Wall.” In short: Cap is not on the moon. We may hate plot holes, but Marvel Studios loves this one. Having infinite possibilities regarding Steve and what happened to him after Endgame leaves the door open to either leave his story as is or improve upon it down the road. If they ever decide to bring Evans back as Captain America they’re dealing with what is essentially a blank slate, if they never address the specifics of his departure/death, then it’ll be one of cinema’s greatest loose ends—ambiguity that will forever keep us up at night. Sleep is for the weak anyway… hopefully Disney+’s Loki offers up some clarification on the time-travel-logic…

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