Well, well, well, Fox, I gotta say, you’re being pretty gutsy here. On one hand, you need to cling onto all the Marvel properties you own, because those things are definitely cash cows. On the other hand, the last time you touched this property, you had this:
While I suspect that this movie was more of a way to retain the rights of the Intellectual Property (a la the unnecessary Spider-Man remakes), I still at the very least expected a cash grab of action scenes, posturing, and scientific genius-ing to munch popcorn to. In fact, the very beginning of the movie was quite promising!
A Promising Beginning
We began with a young Reed Richards befriending an abused yet good-natured boy, Ben Grimm, and then watching as Reed blossoms into a genius with the support of the only one to believe in him – his best friend.
The young Reed (Miles Teller) is likeable and believable – as is his foil, Ben, played by Jamie Bell, who is talented (though I have yet to see him in a good movie). However, when half the movie passes and nobody has powers yet, you begin to see what the movie is doing; it’s making a mountain out of a molehill. You’re telling me this whole movie is going to take place before these people even become a team? Are you kidding me? How interesting do you think these characters are? You do know that you’re not making a Wolverine movie, right?
I’m getting ahead of myself. But that’s because I’m trying to match the pace of this movie. I mentioned in my essay about Ender’s Game that movies couldn’t match a book’s ability to slow down time. I hereby stand corrected. This movie can slow down time. This movie made me feel one thousand years old by the time it was over. One way that it does this is because the whole movie covers their rather simple and rudimentary origin story, which makes it so that it feels like the movie is just getting started even hours into the film. They might as well have had opening credits run through the entire film. When the title showed at the end, I don’t know what they wanted me to do… applaud? Please. I was trying to figure out whether it was part of an excruciatingly long intro segment, and – more importantly – whether or not I’d have the opportunity to shave my castaway beard before writing this review.
The villain is Doom (Toby Kebbel). Is this a diabolical Doom, known for his long-term schemes and his masterful skills of deception, matched only by genius and raw power? Nope! Meet Young Zombie Doom! He looks like a ripoff of the superior Karl Ruprecht Kroenen from the Hellboy series!
You do know that you already made Doom a villain in the last two farces you made, right?!
How can this happen? Don’t worry, it gets even better! You know how Doom doesn’t care about the death of innocent lives, making it so no matter where the final fight takes place, if there are humans, there are high stakes? Well, the final fight takes place in an alternate dimension. The movie tells us that the Earth is getting sucked in, and that the whole planet is threatened… but you’re a movie! Show me, don’t tell me!
One Dark Film
This is one dark film. I mean, yes, there’s people exploding into blood, but I meant literally dark. If you’re not watching this in a dark room, you’re going to be squinting trying to figure out what’s going on behind your screen glare
That Thang Thang
If you were attracted by the CG version of the Thing, you still shouldn’t bother. Years later, and the best they can do is this?
Worse, rather than cash in on some Hulk-like action shots to fuel that hypothetical mental comparison, almost all of the Thing’s action scenes are shot from a weird helicopter-like shot. You couldn’t feel more distant from the action then if you were half-blind, sitting in the nosebleed seats of a ping-pong match between two mice.
Making these characters younger wasn’t some kind of magical portal to our wallets, Fox. Even children are confused by watching this movie, I’m sure. One second the government is running experiments on these people, the next second they’re respecting their rights and giving them a secret building to do all their work in – work that they retain the rights to. Sue Storm is adopted… or possibly part black. Details are hazy. Doom’s plan involves him living on Zero – with no food or water yet somehow alive without explanation, then going to Earth so he can go back to Zero and then suck Earth up into Zero so that he’ll be alone and the ruler of nobody.
So… mathemagically, I’m going to give this disaster a 2 out of 10. That’s 20%, which roughly matches the amount of this movie that was entertaining.