So I saw Shazam: Fury of the Gods recently and I had a good time with it. I think the movie is good over-all, but I wasn’t as into it as I was the first movie. I’ll go into it a little bit later. Shazam: Fury of the Gods is directed by David F. Sandberg. The movie stars Zachary Levi, Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Grazer, Rachel Zegler, Adam Brody, Ross Butler, Meagan Good, Lucy Liu as Calypso, Djimon Hounsou and Helen Mirren as Hespera. Shazam: Fury of the Gods sees Billy Batson and his foster siblings, who transform into superheroes by saying “Shazam!”, are forced to get back into action and fight the Daughters of Atlas, who they must stop from using a weapon that could destroy the world.
The plot line and story of the movie work for me. There’s this through line of family issues throughout the movie, as the Shazamily have their own issues they’re going through and the Daughters of Atlas have their own issues. Its interesting to see how different the two factions are, in showing how close the adopted family truly is even throughout the problems they are having in this movie. One could even say they are more of a family than the blood related family in the Daughters of Atlas. This movie also puts a lot of focus on Shazam and on Freddy throughout. I know they’re the main focus of the first movie, but they put a focus on them together as well as them apart. I do think this works as it allows us to see different sides of the characters and see them in different ways. There’s also this through line of the relationship between Gods and Mortals, and what gods think of mortals. Throughout the movie the main two sisters view mortals as disgusting and beneath them, angered at the fact that the power of their family was given to children. As the movie goes on though, the supposedly superior gods fall to the same impulses and issues that humans do, and that humanity can rise to be like the gods. A lot of this is focused around the character of Billy as Shazam, so lets talk about it.
Zachary Levi and Asher Angel do a pretty good job as Shazam and as Billy. Though we don’t actually get much of Billy throughout this movie which is interesting to me as I do feel his absence throughout. While Levi continues to do a great job in the role, I do feel like him and Billy feel like different people in comparison to the others. Of the little we see of Billy throughout the movie he feels more subdued, while as Shazam he feels more boastful over-the-top. I don’t let it detract from the movie but iI figured I should mention it. The way they handle the Shazam character in this movie is really interesting, as I kind of feel like he hasn’t learned much since the first movie. He’s still immature, emotional, impulsive, and inexperienced when I feel like he should have a bit more going on there now. I get why throughout the movie as he feels the need to try to keep the family together do to his past traumas and what he thinks is coming up in regards to his family soon. He doesn’t want to be alone again, and is trying to cope with that possibility. That is an interesting way to take the character and the lessons he learns throughout the movie as I think that is something we can relate too in general, but also with what he’s been though. Another thing about the character is that there is a running joke throughout the movie that he doesn’t really think things through and might not be the most intelligent member of the group, but kind if has a great ability to think on the fly. We see this a bit in the first movie, but here it is shown a lot more. Especially with how he figures out how to solve the situation that they are put in. I do think this is a great way to take the character as it shows him learning from his mistakes. The rest of the cast are great as well, with a lot of praise going to Jack Dylan Grazer as he also gets to do a lot throughout the movie. Freddie is learning a lot of the same lessons that Billy is learning throughout the movie. He’s also one of things showing the “superior” gods just what humanity is capable of, as he’s strong enough willed to do things a lot of people throughout the movie weren’t able to do.
Moving on, the movie has some really good effects throughout. The creatures all look great, the locations look great. The action is mostly pretty good throughout, seeing Shazam battle a giant magic Dragon is as cool as you think it would be. The music use is pretty good, with a stand-out use being the bridge sequence in the early parts of the movie that makes great use of a song. The pacing of the movie is pretty similar to the first one, and can kinda go all over the place. I mean it starts off fast by introducing the sisters and their abilities. The score is ok, not super memorable, but it works for what it is. The comedy mostly hits for me throughout the movie, with some good running jokes.
In terms of issues, its mostly the Billy thing. It kind of took me out of the movie that they feel a lot more different than everyone else who transform does. Another issue is kind of spoiler so I won’t say much, but its weird that DC really went there again with this movie.
Over-all, this is a fun family movie to see in the theatre. Its a good follow up that ups the action and effects and is worth the watch, even with the future of the character being as in the air as it currently is. Though this does kind of fit the direction James Gunn is taking the movies going forward, I mean come on this movie is legitimately about Gods and Monsters. Over-all I give this movie two thumbs up, its worth watching.