Not quite a ‘Fantastic’ reboot
Rebooted 10 years after its film debut, “Fantastic Four” now has a more serious tone, and is a more “realistic” take on the iconic comic book quartet. Steeped in controversy early on because of casting choices, it’s a good, promising movie—until it isn’t.
The four—Reed Richards (Miles Teller), Sue Storm (Kate Mara), Johnny Storm (Michael B. Jordan) and Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell)—are transformed by a mission to another dimension, making them reluctant, unhappy super-folk.
Visually, it’s actually pretty decent, an improvement over the earlier, glossy live-action versions. In this film by Josh Trank, who previously impressed with the flashy “Chronicle” (about tragic teen telekinetics), Richards and the gang of like-minded brainiacs are given an interesting origin, or at least an adequate first hour.
But that, sadly, isn’t enough. There’s a one-year time jump after the team’s metamorphosis, skipping possible pivotal scenarios. The pacing becomes problematic after that. While the inevitable clash with the archfoe Dr. Doom (Toby Kebbell) is competently rendered effects-wise, it lacks urgency and unique fight choreography.
The last 20 minutes of the film also feel rushed, unevenly capping off an initially witty, risk-taking venture.
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