Re: Did the fact there was hardly any real Nazis in this film hurt it?
I agree to a small extent. It really depends on how grounded in reality you are when you view the movie. If you try to examine every character from a real world point of view (I don't see why you would, but to each his own) then you have a point. However, in the context of the movie I believe the fact that HYDRA poses as much of a threat to the Axis as they do to the Allies actually makes them a much scarier group.
One of the most miraculous things this movie does is tackles a seemingly nationalistic character in a nationalistic setting against nationalistic villains and makes it all ''nation neutral''. Seriously, it's pretty goddamn amazing that they managed to pull it off. Some would say that they ''took the coward's way out'' but what they accomplished in the movie was actually far harder. It's easy to say ''Nazis are bad, Allies are good'', and it would have been effective but that's been done in many movies.
In this movie you specifically have a hero that doesn't necessarily want to kill Nazis (''I don't like Bullies'') and a villain that wants to kill everyone, including Nazis (''His target is everywhere''). Like I said, the fact that the movie is ''nation neutral'' despite it's setting is a quite the feat. I appreciate the way they handled a movie that could have easily been too pro America and too anti Nazi. The poor Germans have held this negative stigma like shame on their shoulders since the 40s, so I'm glad this movie took it easy on them for once.
It makes me facepalm so hard when people (not you) claim this movie is jingoistic or patriotic. They did everything possible to make the story show that Steve is just pure hearted and would fight for any country's freedom.