Sunday, April 14, 2019

Shazam

(Movie Review)

My History With Captain Marvel
The strange legal history of Captain Marvel, as well as his awkward place in the D.C. Universe, has long been a source of fascination for me.  I've mentioned it before several times on this blog--HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE for example.

This is also, incidentally, the first D.C. Universe movie I've seen.  Although I've long been a fan of the comic books, the movies have been getting such horrible reviews that I've just stayed home.

The Review  ***SPOILERS***
Having long had a bizarre fascination with Captain Marvel (see the links above), I was predisposed to be interested in this movie. 
And I liked it.
There are some weak points.  The plot is a bit too contrived.  The bully characters are a bit too cliche.  And the movie is not as funny as it thinks it is.  Asher Angel--the actor who plays Billy Batson--is good, but a lot of the banter at the beginning of this movie between Billy Batson and Freddy Freeman was not funny and just groan worthy.
But Zachary Levi, the actor who plays Captain Marvel, redeems the whole movie.  He is great.  Not only is he really funny, and does great in all the comedic parts, but he also does such a good job of really selling the idea of a kid in a grown man's body. 
I liked the fact that the whole Marvel family was involved.  When all the kids went through the magic door together to fight the bad guy, the movie had a Goonies type vibe of this gang of kids together on an adventure.
And then (**SPOILERS***) I was really very pleasantly surprised when they all got super powers in the final scene.  I mean, since I was familiar with the comics, I knew that Freddy and Mary were obviously being set up to be Mary Marvel and Captain Marvel Jr.  But I thought it was just an Easter Egg they weren't really going to pay off.  Or if they did, it would be in some sequel down the road.  I didn't think this movie would embrace the zaniness of the original comic book source material by bringing in the full Marvel family, but I'm so glad it did. 

More Nitpicks
* I realize at this point it's not really sporting anymore to point out how much the DC Cinematic Universe is failing compared to Marvel, but... what was up with that Superman cameo at the end in which they couldn't even get the Superman actor to appear?  Could you imagine a Marvel movie doing that? Could you imagine Marvel not being able to negotiate a cameo appearance, and so having to hide the character's face out of frame?

Rating :
7 out of 10 Stars.  A flawed movie, but still a fun movie.

Video Review
Video Review HERE and embedded below



Link of the Day
Chomsky: Arrest of Assange Is “Scandalous” and Highlights Shocking Extraterritorial Reach of U.S.

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