Aquaman (2018)

Director: James Wan
Writer/s: David Leslie, Will Beall (screenplay by), Geoff Johns, James Wan, (story by), Mort Weisinger, Paul Norris (Aquaman created by)
Starring: Jason Mamoa, Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Nicole Kidman, Dolph Lundgren, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and more.

Aquaman

 

The Intro:
ARE YOU READY KIDS? AYE AYE CAPTAIN! I CAN’T HEA……. Oh, awkward. We are talking about the other Spongebob. Well this is embarrassing… ANYWAY… Hi friends, time to have some fun with my review on quite a hotly anticipated film, “Aquaman”. All jokes aside, I am guilty to making the “Aquaman sucks” jokes. However, with the current DC film universe, I have to say I am quite the backer of Aquaman being badass. With Jason Mamoa as Aquaman and his presence being felt with the arrival of “Justice League”, I have been excited for this film for awhile now. So now it is time for “Aquaman” to get Oberrated and truly see if he is as badass as he looks or if I am going to be belting out the Spongebob Squarepants theme song during DC films for all of eternity. #RIPStephenHillenburg

IMDB Summary:
“Arthur Curry learns that he is the heir to the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, and must step forward to lead his people and be a hero to the world.”

The Oberrating:
“Aquaman”, I must say, had a lot going well for it. I have a lot of good things to say but for some reason there is just something about it holding me back from notching it just one more number rating. Regardless, “Aquaman” is a hell of a time and here are the brightest points from my point of view (and also some blemishes).

As I had expected, Jason Mamoa owns the role of Aquaman/Arthur Curry. Mamoa is not only an ass-kicking badass but he is also hilarious and charismatic. I never felt he missed his mark (aside from some dialogue which will be expanded upon later) and I feel he has single-handedly brought Aquaman to become a fan favorite among films viewers. He surely made a fan of me. I truly love the character that the DC Universe has delivered.
Next to the shining spot that is Aquaman is Mera played by Amber Heard. Before I dive deeper (haha), I want to explain that my knowledge of DC is minimal. I know the front running characters but not much about the surrounding ones. I knew there was a Mera in the Aquaman world but I would have never guessed that she would be as kickass as what I saw in this film. First of all, Amber Heard is dynamite in “Aquaman”. Whether she was fighting or if she was pushing the dialogue, Mera commanded my attention. Honestly, I feel as if she could push for my favorite fighting moment within the film. Between Mera and Arthur, I feel as if it is a push for who was my favorite within the film. I do not feel that Mera was a supporting character, I feel that she was the co-star. An utter powerhouse.
A slight positive note goes to Patrick Wilson as the villain, King Orm. If you did not catch on, Patrick Wilson is a favorite of director James Wan as he appeared in Wan’s Conjuring universe. What I loved about Wilson’s performance was the intensity he brought to the role. Compared to his role in the Conjuring universe, he really pushed his limits here and it was something I was not used to.

The images that “Aquaman” created were absolutely breathtaking. Some of the still images created have stuck in my mind ever since I viewed the film. From images of Atlantis, to the Trench, to the action sequences, to simply the visual effects. I was blown away by the shots created in this film and it undoubtedly became one of my favorite aspects of “Aquaman”.

I am going to blend my next point to transition to my negative points. Next up is Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Manta. The introduction to the film and the character in general was so strong. I really felt something for Manta’s introduction and it made me so excited for his character. On top of that, Abdul-Mateen is brilliant when given the proper moment. His intensity and passion compliments the character of Manta perfectly. Unfortunately, this introduction is about where the highlights for Manta end. All other events beyond this fall flat for me and he has no where near the influence I felt he had on the later points in the film. Maybe they are saving it for the future? Who knows? For now, Manta’s impact is short lived.

The dialogue in “Aquaman” is suspect at times. Actually, if I could give it a hard comparison, I would actually say “Aquaman” may be the first DC film that has a Marvel vibe to it in regards to dialogue and jokes landing or not landing. Aquaman/Arthur Curry is a sarcastic asshole, basically, about 90% of the time and I loved it. Aquaman is relatable in regards to how he carries himself on a human basis. Yet, plenty of times he says some things or cracks some jokes that completely ruin the heat of the moment. This can either be viewed as still a human-like moment or maybe it truly is just a lapse in judgement of the studio. Regardless, “Aquaman” will not be taking any heroic quote-worthy moment credibility.

Ultimately, my most glaring point of “Aquaman” which also can be viewed as possibly just a standard note, “Aquaman” is a pure superhero movie and nothing more. Aquaman is the star of the show. Everything bends and breaks to his presence once he is strong enough. Convictions of certain characters are broken after certain points. Everything is simply convenient for the sake of the story and that bothers me.

The Wrap-Up:
Easily, “Aquaman” ranks high within my DC Film universe rankings… As if it were hard to do so. The film is an entertaining trip underwater with stunning visuals and epic action sequences. Mamoa and Heard easily take hold of this film and runaway with it. Despite multiple superhero cliches and choppy dialogue, this is one of DC’s strongest outings and one I desperately want more of.

Extra Takeaways:

  • Wan’s Trench scene is a terrifyingly beautiful nod to his horror expertise.
  • Lundgren looks hilarious in all his colorful glory
  • War scene was epic
  • Dafoe’s de-aging effects were impressive

Rating: 7/10

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Aquaman 3Aquaman 1Aquaman 2

References:
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1477834/?ref_=tt_urv
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1477834/fullcredits?ref_=tt_cl_sm#cast

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