Projections that Disney-Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier will earn as much as $90 million this weekend are not about (a) the renewed strength of the Marvel brand or (b) an indication that the summer season is now beginning in April. Okay, these are part of the picture but the big-hit vibe is mainly due to crackling wildfire awareness that it’s an exceptionally well-crafted, highly satisfying popcorn pic. Because it is.

Don’t listen to the pundits who are trying to spin this off as some kind of trend or marketing-hook story. Some reporters would rather stab themselves in the chest with a pencil than admit that most hits become hits for the simplest of reasons — i.e., because the word is out that they deliver the goods. When a film is really the shit, people can smell it. That’s all that’s going on here. Nothing more.

“The new Captain America flick is good enough to win the admiration and allegiance of a comic-book-movie hater like myself,” I wrote a few days ago. “This is one sharp, well-written (by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely), rock-solid, mega-efficient, super-expensive something or other, and with a certain humanist empathy that seeps through from time to time. It’s going to be a huge hit.”