Aquaman movie premiered in the U.S. last Friday on the 21st of December. With the help of an early release overseas and a 90 million dollar take over the weekend and Monday it has officially passed the $500 million mark at the global box office last night. The Tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes set at 64% fresh with an audience score of 82%. Critics Consensus: Aquaman swims with its entertainingly ludicrous tide, offering up CGI superhero spectacle that delivers energetic action with an emphasis on good old-fashioned fun. That you may already know but if you have not seen the movie yet know that the rest of this review will have SPOILERS.
The movie is definitely an entertaining ride with a lot of very well done CGI like Avatar the 2009 ‧ Fantasy/Science Fiction film. The top critics were divided 50/50 with an Average Rating: 5.4/10. Most of the complaints the overuse of CGI and cheezy components like an octopus playing drums and over the top fight sequences with giant seahorses and lazar firing sharks just to name a few. The ReelViews critic said “Had this movie arrived as recently as two years ago, it might have been heralded as a higher-end superhero movie. Things have changed, however, in both the DCEU and the MCU.” This implies that they as critics must use a higher grading curve with the glut of superhero movies that we have had in the last 10 years.
In reality, the movie is an exciting, visually stunning underwater adventure. One of the most wildly imaginative and purely fun blockbusters of the year. The was a story which was easy to follow which begins with the love story between Thomas Curry and Atlanna, the princess of the underwater nation of Atlantis and the birth of their son Arthur. Atlanna must leave her son Arthur to protect her unsanctioned family because the underwater people would see her son as a half-breed. She left them with the hope that Arthur may one day reunite the 7 kingdoms of the underwater world and bring peace with the surface world.
After returning to Atlantis, Atlanna entrusts to her loyal advisor Nuidis Vulko the mission of training Arthur. Under Vulko’s guidance, Arthur becomes a skilled warrior but is rejected by the Atlanteans for being a half-breed and ultimately wants nothing to do with Atlantis because of their disdain for him. Arthur confronts a group of pirates attempting to hijack a Russian Naval nuclear submarine. Their leader, Jesse Kane, dies during the confrontation while his son, David Kane, vows revenge against Arthur.
David, who will call himself Black Manta, later targets Atlantis at the behest of Orm, Arthur’s younger half-brother and Atlantis’ king who uses the attack as a justification to declare war on the surface. King Nereus of Xebel swears allegiance to Orm’s cause, but his daughter Mera, who has been betrothed to Orm, refuses to aid them and journeys to the surface to ask Arthur for help. This is where Arthur’s journey to become King starts. It takes him to Atlantis to face Orm his half-brother, then the Sahara Desert, and Sicily to fight Black Manta, then to the deep underwater area where Arthur and Mera are attacked by a legion of amphibious monsters known as The Trench.
Narrowly escaping with their lives they end up in the center of the earth the location of the Trident of Atlan, a magic artifact that once belonged to Atlantis’ first ruler, which Arthur needs in order to reclaim his rightful place as king. The Trident is guarded by Karathen, the mythical leviathan. Arthur must confront this creature then stop the war in the underwater kingdoms and the attack upon the surface world.
The third act is a spectacular underwater spectacle with resolves the conflict and establishes Arthur as the king of the 7 kingdoms with Mera at his side. The flamboyancy and over the top story was well done by James Wan and company and I can’t wait to see this movie again. The acting was adequate to tell the story but Jason Momoa nailed the role of Aquaman and grew as a character which was to become king. The movie is a great stand-alone movie which is worthy of a sequel in my opinion. Thanks for joining us at Comics Talk. 🙂 Walt