Cinema Dispatch: Shazam! Fury of the Gods

Shazam! Fury of the Gods and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures

Directed by David F Sandberg

The announcement of James Gunn taking over the DCEU has certainly put this and a few of their other recent projects in an awkward position. Sure, there are questions of continuity and whatnot which I’m sure will be hashed out eventually, but these are projects that were built from the ground up under a regime that is no longer in charge, and it’s still a huge question mark as to how much Gunn is willing to carry over from the years that can be charitably called misguided. Still, the future is a concern for another day and the first Shazam movie was definitely a bright spot in the DCEU’s darkest days and perhaps it’s better suited than most to make the leap from old DCEU to Gunn’s DCEU. Does this movie prove that this is a viable character and film series going forward, or will this be a depressing reminder as to why they handed it over to Gunn in the first place? Let’s find out!!

A few years after the events of the first film, we find Billy Batson (Asher Angel) and his family (Ian Chen, Jovan Armand, Grace Caroline Currey, and Faithe Herman) are still protecting Philadelphia from whatever crimes and random disaster befalls their city using their Shazam powers that turn them into super hunky adult superheroes (Zachary Levi, Ross Butler, DJ Cotrona, and Megan Good). Still, the one thing their powers cannot overcome is the ceaseless march of time and Billy is already seventeen which means he’s going to age out of the foster system soon and doesn’t know what to do with his life if he’s no longer with his family who will also one day go their separate ways. Freddy (Jack Dylan Grazer) in particular seems ready to fly the coop and start a solo act with his superhero persona (Adam Brody), but when he gets caught up in a plot by three Gods (Helen Mirren, Lucy Liu, and Rachel Zegler) who steal his powers and want to do… something nefarious, Billy and the rest must find a way to save him and stop these Gods before Philly is destroyed. Will Freddy find a way to be heroic even without the superpowers gifted to him? Will Billy be able to stop these Gods and come to terms with growing up and moving forward with his life? Will the other Shazam heroes also find something to do in this movie, or are they just kinda there for emotional support?

“I’ll defeat you if it’s the last thing I do!” “And we’ll help!” “Sure, I guess…”
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Cinema Dispatch: Top 7 films of 2021 That Need Improvement

Another year has come and gone, and as always we must take one look back before we move on to whatever comes next. Well, at least that’s usually how it goes, but 2022 started off pretty hectic for me so it took me a while to find time and collect my thoughts on the year prior. As usual, we start with the films that I thought needed improvement before getting to the good list, and hopefully, this can stay constructive instead of vitriolic. That proved to be rather challenging with some of these movies, as there were some rough ones this year, but enough beating around the bush! Let’s get started!!


Marvel’s Underwhelming Theatrical Releases – Black Widow & Eternals

Black Widow Review; Eternals Review

Avengers Endgame was the culmination of a decade’s worth of storylines, and whether or not it was truly the peak of the MCU, it definitely feels like all the movies since then have been listless and without direction. Black Widow, in particular, felt like a holdover from the era of Iron Man 2 and while Eternals definitely has some decent imagination and skill behind it, the story never quite connected with me and it felt just as aimless as everything else we’ve gotten from the MCU this year. Now obviously the formula has proven far too successful to make any significant changes (certainly not with Spider-Man making as much money as it did), but considering how great the TV shows have been on Disney Plus compared to the films, it might be worth considering that the MCU is no longer suited for big scale and even bigger budget action films; at least not until they establish who the new crop of heroes will be and what the new threat is. There are some films on the horizon that are at least intriguing like that new Doctor Strange movie and the reboot of Blade, but the Post-Endgame growing pains have been rather frustrating to sit through.

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