Fantastic Four Review.


     How hard is it to make a Fantastic Four flick? I’m seriously asking here. What is it about the source material that has managed to make at least three filmmakers lose their fucking minds? I know that the comics are silly, and dare I say, lighthearted, but Jesus Christ. I’m not asking for an Academy Award winning flick here, but give me something that makes me proud to be a Fantastic Four fan.
     In this iteration, Reed Richards (Miles Teller) and Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell) work on mind blowing science experiments that catch the eye of Franklin Storm (Reg E. Cathey) and his daughter Sue (Kate Mara). The guys are invited to join a think tank along with Victor Von Doom (Toby Kebbell) to open up a portal to another world. I don’t know why that would be a good idea, but OK. Eventually they’re joined by Johnny Storm (Michael B. Jordan), because reasons. They all go through the portal and gain crazy powers.
     Deep down inside, I wanted to like this movie. Seriously, I did. I wanted to join the “unappreciated gem” party, but I really can’t do that. When you spend decades reading up on films that were tampered by studio interference, you learn to spot them from time to time, but holy shit. There was no way that any filmmaker, I don’t care who they are, would purposely release something like this. I felt like I saw a demo reel, not a film.
     The main problem is the film structure. Unless you’re telling a three hour multi-generational drama, time jumps do not belong in a 90 minute film. And I’m not talking about one here, I’m talking about two major ones. There’s a one year time jump that skips over the cool shit, the discovery of their powers (which has some awesome Cronenberg overtones), the way these four would form a bond that would ultimately make them a family, not a team. This plays like a cliff notes version of Fantastic Four written by a guy who didn’t even know the premise. All the actors are very serviceable, but they don’t have any screen time to actually build any chemistry.
     I love everyone involved in this production, but that’s what hurts more. I expect better from these guys. Yes, I do know about the behind the scenes shenanigans that went on, and that’s why the actors and director are not where I’m putting the blame. Yep, the good old studio. I know that studios make superhero movies just to make money, but damn, could they have been a little more subtle about it? It was so clear that this movie was made to keep the rights, that it made me sick to my stomach. I’m just reviewing what I saw on the screen, and Fox should be ashamed to have put up a film that not even a first year film student would have the good sense to make.


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