DC is finally starting to figure things out by not having all of their movies stick to one, dark tone. While Marvel has figured out how to have a massive, connected world, DC never could get the ball rolling on that. Now that they seem to be ditching that idea, I have finally found some enjoyment in the movies. Shazam! is by no means a perfect movie, but when it’s fun, it’s really fun. (Skip to the next section of the newsletter if you want to avoid spoilers.)
The writing left me wanting more out of the story since I never really felt the depth of Billy’s characters. It’s because we spend so much of the opening with the villain’s backstory. It was an odd way to start a movie that’s about a hero’s origin. Not to mention that Dr. Sivana becomes just as greedy, if not greedier, as his father who he so clearly despises. At least the seven deadly sins were interesting.
The teen and child actors in this movie weren’t giving Oscar-worthy performances, so some moments fell flat. With Freddy, he’s essentially a walking advertisement for some of DC’s biggest characters. His knowledge of them, though, is what makes him a great asset for Billy, even if Billy ends up being a busking superhero for part of the movie.
Having the foster family turn into heroes in the end allows Billy to completely feel accepted. Being a hero is now something that they can share with each other. When the wizard first mentioned the empty thrones, I wasn’t expecting them to be filled by the end of the movie. It makes for a big finish
By the end of the movie, I had some good laughs, was annoyed by a not-so-great villain, and found myself feeling like this was a decent movie. Even though it wasn’t anything to write home about, it’s another step in the right direction for DC and gets the tough part out of the way with Shazam’s origin story. Let’s not forget about the cameo at the end by the Man of Steel, either. It cements Shazam in DC’s universe without giving us any real indication of who will play Superman going forward or what the title character will be up to next.
Shazam! is a movie I would probably watch again, but I still want to see more improvement from DC. I think Wonder Woman 1984 could be the movie that really gets me on board with everything they plan going forward, but we have a while before that’s out.