Fantastic Four shows what a desperate studio does when its movie rights are due to expire. Faced with losing a Marvel comics property when their other films have been huge hits, the studio has cobbled together a quick cash-in.
Devoid of style, substance and thrills, Fantastic Four is a leaden addition to the superhero genre. The fourth Fantastic Four movie to grace screens, it’s an unappealing mess deriving little from its comic-book origins.
Gifted scientist Reed Richards (Miles Teller) is on an important quest. Journeying through space to discover its infinite wonder, Richards unwittingly travels to an alternate universe. There, along with his girlfriend Susan Storm (Kate Mara), Johnny Storm (Michael B Jordan) and Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell), all gain strange powers. Learning to utilise their new gifts, they quickly form a team to combat evil. Wickedness rears its head as Victor von Doom (Toby Kebbell) and puts the super-heroic group through its paces.
Fantastic Four commits the biggest cinematic sin by being boring. Copying the dark, sombre feel of the Dark Knight Batman trilogy, it slowly plods along to an uneventful finale. The original comics were full of colour, life and dazzling action. Its theatrical counterpart has none with its origin tale dragging the storyline. There’s nothing new seen with the very young cast, lacking the conviction their characters need.
Director Josh Trank injects little imagination or flair. His misguided direction ensures each anonymous set-piece blends to the other with the CGI and cinematography poorly executed. It’s difficult caring for lifeless characters with the film’s bleak look making for depressing viewing. Hardly anything works with the action, story and special effects morphing into a forgettable adventure of limp proportions.
Given the chance to craft an engaging, exciting superhero movie, those behind Fantastic Four have thrown it away. This non-effort exists purely to maintain movie rights and make fast bucks. The studio’s cynicism shown to fans should be noted with the scorn and shame it deserves.
Reviewed by Patrick Moore
Rating out of 10: 0