Despite what the critics are saying, “Shazam! Fury of the Gods,” is worth it
The daughters of Atlas have risen. Orphan Billy Batson is not sure if he is fit to be a superhero. He will come of age in a few months, and old gods seeking Shazam’s powers is the last thing he needs. But there’s no escape. He and his siblings must face these immortals and save the planet. After which, Billy might get a date with Wonder Woman.
Geek Rate: Mortal Worthy (3 out of 5 stars). “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” is so good from beginning to end that the audience will clamor for more. Even if the plot is not that strong, Zachary Levi, Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Grazer, Ross Butler, D.J. Cotrona, and Adam Brody in one film are reasons enough to watch it.
Asher Angel and Zachary Levi are back as Billy Batson/Shazam in this film’s second installment. Angel plays the teenage orphan who receives the powers of the old gods and thus becomes an unlikely superhero Shazam played by Levi. Together with his other siblings, they must stop the evil daughters of the titan god Atlas from destroying the world. Well, just Philadelphia.
What I like about Shazam is it did not have that dark feel DC films have (remember “The Batman”?). It is as fresh as far as superhero stories go, and fun to watch as always. Levi in that fitting Shazam costume showing his bulging muscles and that thing in between his you know…Seriously, Levi is a perfect fit for this character with his heartfelt comedic delivery of a somewhat mediocre script.
The dynamic between Angel and Grazer (as Freddy Freeman) is as perfect as ever. They were the reasons why I was hooked on this film from the get-go. Grazer’s Freddy was given a little limelight here, partnering with Golden Globe-winning actor Rachel Zegler (as Anthea). Angel manages to give justice to his character’s abandonment issue. And damn, Angel is pretty hot here (especially when he’s shouting “Shazam!”).
Billy’s other siblings were also given ample screen time and of course, apart from Levi and Angel, there’s no shortage of eye candy here. There’s Butler, Cotrona, and Brody to choose from. Also, two actors from the TV series “Outsourced” play cameos if you haven’t noticed: Diedrich Bader as Freddy’s teacher and the funny Rizwan Manji as a museum employee.
I’m not impressed with the plot but the execution is tight. Of course, if there’s Greek mythology with its gods and other creatures, I’m always all in. The CGI is a disappointment, especially when compared to the likes of Star Wars’ recent TV series such as “The Mandalorian.” To be brutally honest, it was like watching “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” What year is this, 2001?
Also, spoilers. Wonder Woman has a cameo and it’s really cool. It sets out the storyline for future Shazam films, or maybe Shazam with the other Justice Society heroes. Will we see him with his nemesis Black Adam together in a film? We’ll see.
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