Shazam!

Directed by David F. Sandberg

Starring Zachary Levi, Mark Strong, Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Granger, and Djimon Hounsou

Backstory

Well, it’s nice to see that Warner Brothers is starting to delve into the DC back catalogue a little more and give Superman and Batman a rest. With the recent massive hits that were Wonder Woman
and Aquaman, Warner Brothers now turns to the Big Red Cheese, their Captain Marvel, Shazam. I’ve always had a soft spot for this Superman clone, and approached his film with mild excitement. Will the movie lead up to the legacy?

Plot

Billy Batson is a 14-year old orphan, ever since his mother mysteriously vanished at a carnival. Constantly running away from his foster families as he searches for his mother, he now finds himself in a group home, and with his new roomie, Freddie Freeman. After helping Freddie fight off some bullies one day, Billy is whisked away by an enchanted subway car to the wizard Shazam. All Billy has to do is speak Shazam’s name to become a superhero…in a grown-up body. With these new powers, and Freddie’s help, Billy becomes a viral sensation. But, there’s trouble a brewing. Dr. Thaddeus Sivana was rejected by the wizard Shazam when he was a boy, and his spent his life trying to get powers of his own. Now allied with Shazam’s greatest enemies — demonic personifications of the seven deadly sins — Dr. Sivana is out to claim Shazam’s powers for his own. Will Billy finally rise to the occasion and defeat Dr. Sivana?

What I Liked

Zachary Levi is delightful as Shazam, the boy trapped in a superhero’s body. He brings such a boundless enthusiasm to the role. In fact, it’s quite a colourful array of characters, given Billy’s foster family. Freddie Freeman, in particular, is quite the scene-stealer. Mark Strong, as always, makes a great villain.

What I Didn’t Like

Well, as I’ve been saying for a while now, I’ve seen one too many of these superhero films, and I can see the big plot twists coming from a mile away. And speaking of colourful characters, would have been nice if we got to know the rest of Billy’s foster family.

Final Verdict

Shazam! is good, but not great. Another satisfying, if run-of-the-mill superhero film.

3 Nibs