Shazam: Fury of the Gods Review- A Funny Fantasy Filled Follow-Up of the First Film

It’s no surprise that the DCEU has been going through some changes lately. The new owner of Warner Brothers David Zazloff cleaned house out with the old regime and in with the new. That means there are new bosses in town. James Gunn and Peter Safran are in charge now and they have a new vision for what they want the DC film and television Universe to be, but they still have a few straggler projects to be released in theaters before the slate is cleaned. And one of those films is Shazam: Fury of the Gods, the sequel to the funny and entertaining Shazam starring Zachery Levi of Chuck fame.

Billy Batson (Asher Angel) is enjoying his double life of being a teenager and a superhero at the same time. Once he shared his powers with his family they were able to fight crime together. Or fight crime with a little destruction along with it, unfortunately. Unbeknownst to them though, three sisters dubbed The Daughters of Atlas, Hesperia (Helen Mirren) Kalypso (Lucy Liu) have come seeking revenge for their father. They first find a staff that needs to be mended. Once they get it the destruction of Philadelphia is on. The only people that are in their way are the Shazam family.

Shazam has been one DCEU film that has stood out in the fact that it didn’t take itself too seriously. Unlike the other films in the series. The casting of Zachary Levi was great. He embodies everything of what this character truly is. An adult who has the mentality of a teen. The rest of the cast was also chosen well. They truly seem like kids in adult bodies. In one instance of one of them is saving some kittens first and then going back to save the adults was a perfect example of this. This youthful exuberance as kids and their adult counterparts makes these films stand out in this serious universe that has been set up by the old brass at DC and Warner Brothers.

Part of what makes all these superhero movies pretty amazing is the visual effects that are used. Shazam: Fury of the Gods has some amazing visual effects. At one point The Daughters of Atlas release a giant dragon that one of them rides and she plants an item at Citizens Bank Park, the home of the Philadelphia Phillies, and a giant tree with pods sprouting up in the ballpark and all over the city. And fantasy creatures burst out of the pods. The visuals on all of these are quite amazing. These visual effects add to the overall enjoyment of what the movie is trying to accomplish. I loved all of these visuals.

There is a main story of what this film is trying to say and do but there is also a subplot that parallels the main plot of the movie. Freddy Freeman (Jack Dylan Grazer) has some issues with bullies at school but he meets a new girl on the first day of school. Anna/Anthea (Rachel Zegler, In the Heights) is the new girl. She likes his sense of humor and charming personality. They instantly connect. She has a history though that may conflict with his alter ego. As a member of the Shazam family. This subplot was good though. It added an emotional weight to the film. These characters and actors were very good in these roles. As well as Adam Brody the superhero version of Freeman’s character.

Shazam: Fury of the Gods is a fun follow-up to Shazam. These films have been the exception to the rule of that the DCEU is dark. These movies have been fun; they don’t take themselves too seriously. Yes, the villains are menacing but the family aspect of the characters shines through. The subplot involving Glazer and Ziegler was very good. Levy has become this character for better or worse and he’s enjoyable to watch. The visual effects are first rate whereas regarding other CGI superhero films they aren’t that good recently these are stellar. They add an entire element of fantasy that made the film better.

4 stars 

Dan Skip Allen

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