DC seems to have finally got their act together and have gone 2 for 2 with Aquaman and now Shazam!. Shazam! is a movie with plenty of heart, comedy, lessons about family, and shows how fun being a hero could and should be.
Shazam! was the epitomy of "not taking itself too seriously" as it follows the story of Billy Batson (Asher Angel) an orphan desperately trying to find his mother who abandoned him and in doing so pushes away anyone who tries to care for him. Billy gets entered into a new foster home and finds himself defends his new foster brother, Freddy, played magnificently by Jack Dylan Grazer, from bullies at school the next day. As he's running away he running is chosen by the Wizard Shazam (Djimon Hounsou) to become Earth's champion. The story is as corny and campy as it comes and it seems that the main characters all know it. They all played to the story's campiness perfectly and no one did it better than the Actor who plays Shazam (Zachary Levi).
Zachary Levi's performance was the highlight of the movie. He came across as a child trying to act as an adult, and not an adult trying to act like a child. If DC wants to reboot the DCEU they should center it around Levi's Shazam. Levi really seemed excited to be able to be Shazam and it shone through the movie and made it all the more brighter.
With all of it's strong points Shazam! did have it's drawbacks though. The action was very dull, it didn't have the hard hitting fast action of Man of steel, or the dazzling effects of Aquaman. Thus it took away from the excitement of the movie. It seemed that with so much power they had the potential to really show us what Shazam is capable of and we unfortunately didn't get to see it. Instead he acted as a child and when things got rough he ran instead of pushing his limits for most of the movie. The villain, Dr Sivana, was also a bit of a sore spot as well and although Mark Strong is usually great in his antagonist roles, such as his role in Kick Ass, he hammed this one up a bit too much. The monsters, the 7 deadly sins he would create also seemed a tad too fake, even in this world of CGI we live in now.
In all Shazam! was a great time at the movies and will have you laughing from start to finish and it felt like a very refreshing take on super hero movies.
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