Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer review

I went into Fantastic Four 2 with high hopes and low expectations. And maybe that was for the best, because I ended up being really pleasantly surprised at how much this movie didn't suck.

Ripped from the pages of the FF comic, this film gives a platform to the introduction of my honest to goodness favorite Marvel superhero Silver Surfer. And thank god, they actually got him right! Silver Surfer has always had a rough go of it in the comics. Always the thinking mans protagonist; while SS can have some pretty dynamic action and of course the sweeping backdrop of the cosmos, he was always so inwardly focused that I know he often put readers off. He was always the character the question why, and muse openly on the themes rather than just the plot of his story. And so his translation to the big screen has been one that I've both eagerly anticipated and dreaded. Fortunately FF:ROTSS does an admiral job conveying the power and sadness of the Surfer. As you can tell from even a cursory glance, he looks spot on amazing, and his power cosmic comes across well on screen. My only complaint is that I think a bit more story development would have helped the audience understand his dramatic change of heart in the film. However, I liked that they referenced his past, they set up a spin off film, and that he managed to kick most everyone's ass and look good doing it.

While I went to see FF2 pretty much for the Silver Surfer alone, I was surprised and happy to see the team / family dynamic element VASTLY improved over the last film. While there were still a few dialogue clunkers between Alba, and Gruffudd I loved the interactions between Chris Evans as The Human Torch and Michael Chicklis as The Thing. Sure the writers took the silliness over the top a few times and some scenes just fell totally flat (I'm thinking the dance scene, ugh! or anything with Alicia) I really honestly enjoyed watching the Fantastic Four as a group in this film.

Perhaps the best thing I can say about the film is that I was sitting in the theater near a couple of kids who couldn't have been more than 7 or 8 years old and they really seemed to enjoy the heck out of the film. That makes it a success in all the most important ways my book.

I think this film is really solid film that's well worth watching. It's not mind blowing, and in a way it feels kind of small, and insular. But as long as you take it for what it is, I think you'll enjoy it. This film is not made on the scale of Spider-Man, or the X-Men films; but it has a charm and honest pulpy comic book feel that I liked a lot.



That was another review from my Flixter page. Please if your interested feel free to friend me there. Or make any comments you like in the section below :)

One other very good piece of news that I thought I'd share, is that last week, in fact before Fantastic Four 2 even opened Marvel hired the excellent writer J Michael Straczynski to begin scripting the Silver Surfer prequel spin off film!!! This is exactly the news I've been waiting for ever since I was 9 years old and hung that Silver Surfer poster on my wall. I'm definitely going to be watching the word on this one.


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