Aquaman Movie Review Rating: 3.5/5 Stars (Three and a half stars)
Star Cast: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Willem Dafoe, Nicole Kidman, Dolph Lundgren
Director: James Wan
What’s Good: Jason Momoa as Aquaman – in just his first origin story he has proved to he irreplaceable, the camerawork in trippy undersea sequences, DC finally realising why we don’t do dark anymore here (in Black Panther’s style)!
What’s Bad: It’s 143 minutes LONG & that might force you to check the time in between, after a fascinating pre-climax sequence the finale drags, wish DC could’ve gone full throttle with the humour as Thor: Ragnarok (but no major complaints because they at-least tried)!
Loo Break: Though elongated but it’s a visual treat, don’t risk to miss anything!
Watch or Not?: If you’re outside the comic-fan zone, you can give it a try for its quirkiness & a wholehearted typical Bollywood-like masala hero, if you’re a comic-geek you’re watching it anyway!
Arthur Curry, who was introduced to us in the very meh Justice League last year takes us back to where it all started. When Atlanna (Nicole Kidman) the queen of Atlantis met Tom (Temuera Morrison) a regular housekeeper – it was the mashup of two worlds, land and sea. Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa), result of this mashup, lives above the surface but has his heart deep down in the sea. Atlanna is taken by the King because she breaks the rule to love the man from above the sea (that’s what sea-people call it an inter-caste marriage)
Few uncalled sequences take him in the sea as he knows his half Atlantean brother King Orm (Patrick Wilson), is about to declare war on the people of earth for polluting water. Getting the support from a beautiful redhead Mera (Amber Heard) and his mentor Vulko (Willem Dafoe) he manages to get amongst them. Rest of the story revolves around how these two brothers fight each other in order to attain the throne and know who’s that one true king.
Aquaman Movie Review: Script Analysis
A few days ago saw a poster of Aquaman (Hindi) on some random page on Instagram and it was titled as Samundar Ka Baahubali (Ocean’s Baahubali) which literally is what the story is all about. If you’re an Indian reading this you know what Baahubali was all about. Two brothers, one rightful king, fighting for the throne, facing many obstacles. Take all this under the sea and you’ll get Aquaman. Don Burgess, the cinematographer, who before this has just done 2002’s Spiderman in this genre. He comes back to this zone & perfects almost every camera angle.
The transition scenes from air to water shows the optimum usage of Burgess’ cameras. The undersea life has been captured with a dreamy vision. It’s nothing like ever seen before. It’s one thing to watch people conversing underwater but to watch just rambling each other is a delight. Yes, it had its drawbacks as the second half gets a bit messy. But, majority of the film under or above water is at par excellence.
Aquaman Movie Review: Star Performance
Jason Momoa is here to be Aquaman forever! It would be impossible to find a substitute for him, if ever DC changes its mind regarding the casting. He’s one of those actors who’re just born to do certain kind of roles. Have we found a perfect Batman, yet, after Christian Bale? Momoa just gets under the skin of Aquaman and it’s hard to pick out the actor from him.
Amber Heard is one of the most beautiful redheads to come out of Hollywood. As Mera, she has a meaty role supporting the Aquaman. Yes, there are few awkward falls and pickups which lead to a cheesy love story but it kinda sums up right by the end. Patrick Wilson as King Orm does a Loki here and is fine with his performance. He deserved a much more detailed written character & this could’ve turned the game for the film. In the quest of making it all about Aquaman, makers forget to fill the minute details of other characters.
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Black Mantis, yet again, a supremely wasted opportunity. This is where Black Panther shined with Michael B. Jordan leading the destructive side. Here, everything falls a bit short ahead of our big friendly giant in Aquaman. The love story angle of Willem Dafoe as Tom and Nicole Kidman as Atlanna works very well. They could’ve played a similar idea with developing an emotional core with Atlanna and Arthur as well. They do it to a limited extent but it falls flat.
Aquaman Movie Review: Direction, Music
James Wan makes his debut in the superhero genre and he starts with a bang. He definitely uses his old-school tricks from the Conjuring and Insidious universe to evoke those thrills. He succeeds at most of the places & it’s just a stretch at some. Despite a paper-thin story, he manages to pull off a visual spectacle and that’s where the movie wins some brownie points.
After doing wonders in Wonderwoman, Rupert Gregson-Williams, straight from the school of Hans Zimmer, hypes up the level in this one. With his traditional videogame(sh) touch, Aquaman is high on some amazing music. What I missed amidst all the pumped up instruments, was a good theme music like Wonderwoman.
Aquaman Movie Review: The Last Word
All said and done, Aquaman one of the best *solo* superhero movies to come out of Hollywood. I’m yet to see Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse but Aquaman definitely topples Black Panther for me. A chance for DCEU to redeem its lost glory and rise up strong with upcoming projects. It’s a grand and entertaining underwater delight!
Three and a half stars!
Aquaman Movie Trailer
Aquaman Movie releases on 14th December, 2018.
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