Genre: Fantasy/Science Fiction
Cast: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, Nicole Kidman
Director: James Wan
Synopsis: Once home to the most advanced civilization on Earth, the city of Atlantis is now an underwater kingdom ruled by the power-hungry King Orm. With a vast army at his disposal, Orm plans to conquer the remaining oceanic people — and then the surface world. Standing in his way is Aquaman, Orm’s half-human, half-Atlantean brother and true heir to the throne. With help from royal counselor Vulko, Aquaman must retrieve the legendary Trident of Atlan and embrace his destiny as protector of the deep.
I should start this review with a disclaimer saying that I’m not a big fan of the DCEU films, I loved Wonder Woman but that’s as far as my enjoyment of the DC films go. But Aquaman blew me away with how entertaining it was.
James Wan is an excellent special effects director and he does a great job of creating a world in the deep blue sea that is believable and interesting. The CGI was mind-blowing and perplexing, even in scenes that tended to be a bit cringey at times. Aquaman read like a fun theme park ride, it was enjoyable whilst not requiring the audience to think much.
The script and story were similar to many other superhero origin stories, but just as one can sit through countless Fast and Furious, Transformers and Pirates of the Caribbean movies, the film clearly knows its’ audience. Although we must remember that Aquaman has existed before many other heroes and the legend of Atlantis even longer the film still rang with remnants of the King Arthur legend, Black Panther, Thor, Harry Potter, Indiana Jones and many other fantasy and superhero films. It was nothing new but we signed up for predictability.
Jason Momoa is charming as the hero but he barely seems as if he’s acting although one might attribute that to the writing of the film. The scene-stealer of this film is Nicole Kidman as Aquaman’s mother, Atlanna, her fight scene at the beginning of the film is arguably one of the best fight scenes of the movie.
The film would have benefited from less time spent world-building and more time spent on the characters other than Arthur. The romance between Mera and Arthur seemed underserviced and appeared to be more pre-determined than actually a result of chemistry and attraction, it reminded me a lot of the Jane Foster and Thor romance in the first two Thor films.
But if you are looking for a film to match the fun, festive mood and that the whole family to enjoy, Aquaman is definitely the right film to watch.