Aquaman: Kicking Butts and Taking Tridents

Warner Bros

Fair Use from:

Cameron Thomas, Copy Editor

The Vision Review Report Card: B+

  • Cinematography: B+
  • Action: A+
  • Musical Score:B+
  • Storytelling: B-
  • Acting: A-

Starting with “Batman v. Superman,” DC has been delivering flop after flop (I mean…“Wonder Woman” was okay) after flop. You would think that they would retire after taking so many L’s to Marvel in the past few years. However, you would be wrong. Proving their resilience, DC returned better than ever with “Aquaman” by embracing its cheesiness instead of running away from it.

Arthur Curry, also known as Aquaman (played by Jason Momoa), is the son of a queen who leaves him on land with his human father, so she can go back to Atlantis, the underwater city, in order to protect Arthur from the dangers and pressures of the underwater life. Later in life, his long-lost brother, along with a few others, plans on attacking the humans or “land beings” because of all of the damage they’ve caused Atlantis. Therefore, Arthur and a princess, Mera (played by Amber Heard), set out on a quest in order to stop Arthur’s two worlds from destroying each other.

Aquaman was the superhero everyone took the least serious. “Family Guy” even made fun of him by pointing out how useless he is outside of water. Although this is true in reference to older comics, recent comics have given him more power and relevance in the DC universe, which was the version of him portrayed in the movie.

The beginning of the movie was rather slow and, in my opinion, underdeveloped. It was an attempt to tell his backstory, but it was rushed, thus stifling emotional impact. In DC’s defense, one of the most popular complaints about their movies is how long it takes for their plots to fully develop, so it is understood why they would try to rush all of the backstories.

Imagine the most cliché superhero movie that you can think of off the top of your head. It probably includes something in the realm of the following elements: overly dramatic entrances, slow motion before a cool fighting move, a narcissistic villain who wants power, a superhero with parent problems and, last but most definitely not least, characters who have the urge to announce who they are during, before and after battles. You, my friend, just imagined a brief synopsis of “Aquaman.”

Many would say the mediocrity of the film is what makes it terrible, but in actuality it is what makes it a fairly decent movie. The film was self-aware in a sense that it embraces it’s inner “Power Ranger” by matching its toxic level of cringe. “I don’t know any other way to make an Aquaman movie and not have it be fun and adventurous and a bit cheeky at the same time,” said director James Wan.

I don’t know any other way to make an Aquaman movie and not have it be fun and adventurous and a bit cheeky at the same time.”

— James Wan

It is almost as if the director, James Wan, wanted to make the stereotypical superhero movie in order to allow the other aspects of the movie to shine, such as the cinematography. There were amazing vibrant colors in all scenes of the movie, unlike DC’s other movies which had more of a monotonous and gloomy color choice.

The movie also manifested a battle between modern versus medieval through weapons and mannerisms. There were tense conflicts between humans and the people of the sea because of their countering views on the proper way to live life.

Overall, this is, in my opinion, unanimously DC’s best film yet, and I hope there are more great films to come. Even though “Aquaman” supersedes all of the movies in DC, I personally don’t think it even compares to Marvel’s 2018 hits such as “Black Panther” and “Avengers: Infinity War.” However, it delivered the great story that many viewers feared could only be properly played out in comics.

I honestly went into the movie with a medium popcorn with extra butter, a coke and very low expectations, and I left with a smile on my face, a smile that didn’t come from the greatest movie of all time but quality comedy, action and entertainment. But there is one question left in the air: will DC be able to come back with something better or will they revert back to their regularly scheduled flopping?

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