SHAZAM! FURY OF THE GODS Review — An Olympian Fail

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Lisa Johnson Mandell’s Shazam! Fury of the Gods review says that in spite of Helen Mirren, the second installment has hit a new low. Don’t expect a third.

Shazam! Fury of the GodsShazam, especially as he’s presented in the DC Universe, is not my favorite DC character. I never did buy Zachary Levi as an awkward teenager in an adult body and superhero suit.

He’s a little too goofy for my taste—just trying too hard. That appears to be the modus operandi of director David F. Sandberg (of the original Shazam!). In Shazam 2, the dialogue, the plot, the special effects—everything seems forced.

Still, I was looking forward to Fury of the Gods, because it also stars a true Hollywood goddess, Dame Helen Mirren playing one of Atlas’s three daughters, Hespera. Lucy Liu (Kill Bill, Ally McBeal) and Rachel Zegler (Westside Story) play the other two celestial sisters, and they are a potentially intriguing trio—aside from the fact that these characters never appeared in the comics, a fact of great consternation to DC Comics fans.

Still, I thought “with Dame Helen Mirren to class the joint up, it can’t be all bad.” How naive I was.

No one wants to see the venerable Dame Helen Mirren get body slammed. No one wants to see the venerable Dame Helen Mirren body slamming anyone else. Most of her villainy is done by extending her arm and and twitching her fingers, but the occasional brutal smash ups, and the ridiculous lines she’s given, are of great consternation to Helen Mirren fans.

The plot is the same as every other superhero film — the earth, universe, metaverse, etc. is being threatened by super villains, and the good guys must work together to save the world. The only difference in this one is that they unleash monsters from Greek mythology, most of them poorly rendered.

It’s never a question of if the good guys are going to win, it’s only a question of when and how. And after more than two hours of mostly teenage tedium, the process became tiresome.

If you sit through the credits, you’ll be treated to two extra scenes (as they do in superhero movies—another box checked off). These two give the de rigueur vague hints of things to come. Don’t count on them happening any time soon. This is the year of DC Studios getting movies out of its pipeline so that James Gunn and Peter Safran, who were recently hired to steady the course, can reboot with a clean slate.

I wish them godspeed.

Rated PG-13

2 Hours 1o Minutes

If, after reading this Shazam! Fury of the Gods review, you’re still interested in seeing it, get times and tickets at Fandango.com.

Lisa Johnson Mandell’s Shazam! Fury of the Gods review says that in spite of Helen Mirren, the second installment has hit a new low. Don’t expect a third.

 

 

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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and seen on Rotten Tomatoes. She is the author of three bestselling books, and spends as much of her free time as possible with her husband Jim and her jolly therapy Labradoodle Frankie Feldman.

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