Shazam! (Captain Sparklefingers, not the music app)

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Shazam! (Captain Sparklefingers, not the music app)

Postby Australia » Tue Apr 09, 2019 6:52 pm

Wow. This is the best superhero movie since, well, Into the Spiderverse. But it’s the best Christmas movie since, well, Anna And the Apocalypse. How do I point out that this is a legitimately great movie when there’s legitimately greater counterparts just a few months ago? Oh, I know. This is the best movie in this iteration of the DC universe. By far. Damn, that’s still not saying much, is it? Screw it. I’m sure there’s some ironic connection in the franchise getting a boost in quality when Shazam, a more childish instalment, enters the equation where a child gets a boost in quality when Shazam enters the equation but I’m not clever enough to introduce the review that way. Oh, guess I’m doing it anyway. You get what you pay for.
The Shazam
As a big Chuck fan, Zachary Levi was a primary reason for going to this film, second only to providing you with this hot nonsense of a review, and he didn’t disappoint. He always felt like he was playing 14. Never older, never younger, just that childlike innocence of crashing strip clubs and dangerous busking. All the kids were great, especially the Billy and Freddy pairing but just like in IT, the kid who played (Fr)eddie was my favourite. I assume his character was actually disabled in this movie instead of being brainwashed.

The villain is by far the best in the franchise so far. He’s scary, unhinged and the epitome of what DC should have been doing all along which is running concurrent and contrasting plotlines with the villain being dark and the hero being light instead of everyone being shit in every definition of the word. Shazam uses his powers creatively and Sivana uses his sins creatively (don’t think I missed that Ghostbusters nod). That boardroom scene was fantastic.

Oh, in case I didn’t make it obvious, Shazam feels like more of a hero than the entire Justice League combined and he spends the majority of the movie beating up an old man.

It’s amazing what colour can do for a franchise. Aquaman is not deserving by any means of outselling The Dark Knight but damned if it didn’t because it’s so much more watchable than the crap that came before it. Now add quality in acting and story and a heavy helping of cheese to that colour and presto, you have a good movie.

If you’d told me when Shaun of the Dead came out, there would be three uses of ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ that would be vying for top spot, I would have told you to go to Hell. I’d say this was the best use of the ‘hero learns how to use his powers’ montage but I have a soft spot for Iron Man injuring himself until he gets it right. Having said that, Jarvis never deliberately set him on fire without telling him so Shazam has that going for it.

David Dunn’s been superheroing for decades and he couldn’t survive a puddle. Shazam’s been a hero for a week and he finds a way out. Checkmate, Shamalon.

The movie basically just said ‘Magic exists, deal with it’ and didn’t spend half a movie justifying it. From the opening scene, you know what the movie is. Well, it’s considerably lighter in tone but you know wackiness is going to enter the equation. Or you have to enter the equation seven times to… and I’m not even going to finish that because you get what I’m going for.

The whole bus scene was great. From the fact that Billy caused it and then took credit for the rescue to trying to save the falling people with an old mattress to the dog not moving out of the way. Just a great mesh of heroism and humour. Humourism. No, that’s already a word.

Santa fucking gobsmacked in the aftermath of the battle.

Billy taunting envy. Is it a metaphor if it’s literal?

I would love the next villain to be the caterpalien. Guys in makeup and masks are entertaining enough but embrace the weird, movies.

There’s not much else to say. I was smiling the whole way through a DC movie and if that isn’t enough of an endorsement, that’s good because if you haven’t seen it, I just spoiled a bunch of shit.

“Your phone’s charged. Your phone’s charged.”
“I can’t hear you. You’re like a mile away.”
“I’d like to purchase some of your finest beer.”
“Aim for his head.”
“I don’t even know how to pee in this thing.”
“That was the other security guard. This guy’s a tool.”
“Say my name.” Heisenberg “BILLY!”

The Sha-Damn
It took a while to get going. I understand we have to spend time with mortal Billy for a while so we can see how the powers change his personality and that’s just the necessary evil of origin stories but maybe the flashback could have been cut since we’re told why he’s constantly running away and get the flashback later on anyway. I dunno. All I know is everything that came after the subway opening up in another dimension is terrific so the sooner that happened, the more terrific material. But I really like the arcs and if cutting the first act in half would detract from that then leave it as is. It’s still the best Superman movie (Iron Giant not included).

Oh, right. The kids idolise Superman as this beacon of hope. Which would make sense if this was in the Reeve-verse but Superman 9-11ed a bunch of people, was killed fighting a monster away from witnesses and then was resurrected and killed another monster away from witnesses again in this universe. So if Billy was shaping his moral code after Superman, he should have been a lot more cold-blooded based on what the general public knows of Supes.

The plush tiger didn’t turn into a flerkin. Boo!

The movie did a good job of presenting kids as kids but I feel like they could have done more to make Billy feel like a millennial. Like Peter Parker feels more like a millennial because he’s vlogging instead of photographing for print media which won’t be around in five years. But the stuff Billy does for hobbies and entertainment could have been done in any era.

Lust should have been hotter, or at the very least, sluttier. Venom was more lustful than Lust.

Dr Sivana has to have a glass eye in that credits scene, right? Because there’s no way his eye survived all that. Also, he really should have been singing Country Roads while falling off that roof. Because if one of Mark Strong’s characters does that on his deathbed, they all must, regardless of personality, right?

The Sha-Spam
The infinite door scene hit a little close to home because open any door in Australia and you will be greeted by those crocodiles. True story.


Oh, I’ve got it! It’s the best 80s movie since… Bumblebee. God dammit!
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Re: Shazam! (Captain Sparklefingers, not the music app)

Postby cmsellers » Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:09 am

I read almost half the title of this thread and I have to say, I like SoundHound better.
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