Thrilling new ‘Captain America’ trailer puts The Winter Soldier center-stage

The buzz has been building behind the scenes for the last few months, and if this new trailer for “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” is anything to judge by, the buzz is right.

This looks awesome.

What works best for the Marvel movies at this point is the sense of mounting continuity. Film to film, we’re getting to know these characters better, and there is a sense of cause and effect. Actions in one film have consequences in another. I thought it was one of the nicest moments in the entire series so far when in a recent episode of “Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.”, the characters took notice of a memorial wall in a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility with names of fallen agents, and Bucky Barnes was one of the people listed there.

As fans of the comics know, though, Bucky’s fate was more complicated than a simple death, and from the moment Marvel announced the title for the sequel to “Captain America: The First Avenger,” they have been waiting to see how Marvel would handle not only the introduction of The Winter Soldier, but the entire mythology around him.

What makes this new trailer such a powerful bit of bait is the way it emphasizes what role the Winter Soldier plays in the larger universe. The notion of this semi-indestructible phantom who the entire intelligence community is afraid of is a great one, and the trailer shows enough of what he can do to make that reputation seem earned. In particular, the way he handles Cap’s shield is intimidating, and it suggests that this is going to be a very intense battle, especially once Cap realizes who it is that he’s fighting.

I love the glimpses we get of the Falcon in this trailer, too, and that shot of the Winter Soldier yanking him out of the air is bad-ass. It looks like the Russos have a really dynamic sense of how to shoot comic-book action, and with Nick Fury and Maria Hill both playing important roles here, this looks like the most S.H.I.E.L.D.-heavy film so far.

It’s exciting to think they’re going to marry the paranoid government thriller genre to the superhero action genre, and Robert Redford carries so much film history with him that the instant connection to a tradition including “All The President’s Men” and “The Parallax View” makes this feel like a new sort of Marvel movie.

Let’s hope the film lives up to this intriguing trailer, because right now, this looks like a blast.

“Captain America: The Winter Soldier” is in theaters April 4, 2014.