Skip to main content

Movie Review: Shazam! Fury of the Gods (2023) *Spoiler free*

Shazam! Fury of the Gods Poster.
Much like the first Shazam movie Shazam! Fury of the Gods is a solid family film with a little bit of edge to it (you may want to see it before you show it to your youngest kids for the scare factor).

Also, like the first movie, it's fairly well written, well acted, has really good special effects, and generally a fun time at the movies.

Shazam 2 picks up at least two years (maybe 3-4 years, since Billy is about to turn 18 in this movie but one character specifically says 2 years at one point). The Shazam family have gotten a bit of a reputation as some what incompetent super heroes despite trying their best to be a great hero team.

Unfortunately, Billy, breaking the wizard's staff at the end of the first movie, allowed two of the daughters of the Titan Atlas to cross into the human realm, and they want to reclaim what has been taken from them.

Shazam 2 totally works as a standalone movie or as part of a two movie arc. While it does reference other superhero characters you really don't need to see anything else to enjoy this film.

If you know Black Adam is actually a part of the Shazam comic book series, and you skipped seeing that film with Dwayne Johnson in the title role, it doesn't matter at all. The only reference to that movie is a name drop of The Justice Society. Beyond that you could act as if Black Adam never happened (and, as far as everyone in this movie goes, it didn't happen or they never heard anything about it).

To me, that's the biggest problem the film has. It doesn't pay off who that extra seat is for (from the previous film... presumably Black Adam?). Not only that. They never even mention it. Reportedly Dwayne Johnson turned down a chance to cameo in this film so I imagine there was little point in teasing the return of the character for the moment.

While the Daughters of Atlas, played by Helen Mirren and Lucy Liu, are actually quite engaging with both actors delivering suitably threatening performances, they do seem a little like the 'B team' in terms of being the movie's villains. Even though their back story is well within the context of Shazam lore and their presence ties back to the first film.

It makes me wonder how much better this film could have been if Dwayne Johnson hadn't been so ham fisted in pushing his character to the forefront of the entire DCEU. There was definitely room here for Black Adam to have initially teamed with the heroes but then turn on them at the end, setting up a third film hook that people might have been excited to see.

That aside, this is a much better film than Black Adam. It's better constructed in terms of story. It's humor is done better (and not grossly mistimed, or uncharacteristic, like that movie). Even though not all the characters are as utilized as they could be, all of them seem like unique individuals, and at least get to contribute to the story in a way that makes sense with who they are.

I genuinely like Zachary Levi in the role of Shazam. The only problem here is Billy Batson isn't really a kid anymore. While Zachary is great, it is starting to feel a little like he's still playing 14 year old Billy rather than 17 year old Billy. If they get a third film (not looking too promising at the time I'm writing this), Zachary may need to work on aging up his call backs to how Billy would think.

It is entirely possible for this Shazam heroes team to carry forward into the new James Gunn DCU since their hero forms are magically created. They could take the opportunity to recast the child actors, and cast older for young (like Hollywood used to do all the time) so they don't age out quite so fast, and they could recast Black Adam entirely.

That way Zachery could keep going with channeling a younger Billy, and it wouldn't seem quite so weird that an almost grown man, is turning into an even older grown man.

Overall, while I don't have a lot to say about Shazam 2 in terms of the movie itself. I can say I had fun watching it. It doesn't deserve to bomb at the box office because it is a well made, solid movie that, unfortunately got released during a transitionary period, after a related film failed to impress because it was actually not as good as it should have been.

As a hold over from the DCEU and the Snyderverse, Shazam is still the brightest light in terms of guaranteed entertainment... even if it isn't the most memorable. 


Buy Gifts and Apparel featuring art by TET.

Popular posts from this blog

How to Transfer Any Line Art to Your Griptape - Easy Skateboard Griptape Art Tutorial

Dog Star Griptape Art by TET Griptape art is once again gaining popularity amongst modern skateboarders. For those of us who have tried to create our own griptape art, using paint pens, you'll know reproducing your design onto the grip, without making any mistakes is incredibly challenging. Mostly because you just have to go for it and draw the design freehand, with paint pens, directly onto the griptape. You can make the odd mistake here or there but if you get the proportions of the design completely wrong, it can be very difficult to fix. Often you just have to live with the mistake. To address the problem I've come up with an easy way anyone can transfer a line art design to their griptape, removing almost all the anxiety of getting the proportions wrong. In fact, you could do this with any line art design, even if you have no drawing skill at all. Watch the video below to see my technique in action and/or skip past the video where I highlight the basic steps to get your de

Skateboard Trick Tips: Two Ways to Ollie North (Ollie One foot)

You have to be quick to see my Ollie Norths! Ollie One Foots, otherwise known as the Ollie North, is one of those skateboard tricks you learn and then tend not to do very much as more interesting trick challenges grab your attention. However it does look really cool if you learn how to kick your front foot well past the nose of your skateboard. Still shot from Braille Skateboarding's Ollie North tutorial. I was inspired to make my video below, showing two different techniques to achieve a successful Ollie One Foot, when I not only saw that Braille Skateboarding's Tutorial used a different method to the one I had learned but also, when I looked at various other video tutorials, I discovered yet another technique, with no one using the method I had originally learned. Braille's method is to simply Ollie and drag your front foot past the front of your board. The second method I came across in several video tutorials is to Ollie, drag your front foot and tap your

Are Ion Thrusters the Future of Flying Cars? Spoiler - Probably Not But... Hover Boards... Maybe?

Undefined Technologies Ion Propulsion Drone prototype 3D concept image. You may have heard of Ion engines or, more likely, Ion thrusters. NASA uses them on their spacecraft to help maintain a craft's position or to propel them through space.  Upon hearing that you might think they're big, powerful engines, but actually they are not. They work well in the vacuum of space but, once any kind of atmosphere and gravity is involved they'd be hard pressed to launch you off the ground if you strapped four of them to your lawn chair and yelled "up, up, and away!" I am no expert on Ion thrusters - they're basically magic that science has an explanation for. If you want to know the details, The Space Techie website has a layman's explanation .  Build Your Own Ion Thruster Earth based Ion Thrusters work a bit different to their  space based cousins by Ionizing the same air that we breathe to create thrust (an effect known as Ionic-wind ).  While they sound highly soph

I'm Joining the Illuminati Brotherhood By Personal Invitation of Hiltom Rothschild... Wait, What?

How special am I to have finally come of age (53 years young) and am now eligible to participate in building the world alongside other members of the Illuminati Brotherhood... Yes I've received the call by way of an email, which I'm sure is real because I had to translate it from the Dutch language and it was personally written by Hiltom Rothschild, one of the non-existent members of the Rothschild family (or perhaps deep undercover because Google has never heard of them?). A Transcript of the email below: To: etourist From: Illuminati Brotherhood  Subject: Illuminati Broederschap (Illuminati Brotherhood) I am Hiltom Rothschild, a member of the Rothschild family, one of the 13 families of the Illuminati brotherhood. I'm here to let you know that you've come of age and are eligible to participate in building the 🌎 world. It is a calling and a privilege to honor him with pride and gratitude as not everyone will ever be chosen by the LIGHT, many are called but few are ch

Book Review: Brand It Purple by Ashley Knoote-Parke

Ashley Knoote-Parke. Image: Facebook It seems almost redundant to review  Brand It Purple  given you probably won't find a hard copy edition without digging into the second hand market. The book's author and publisher, Ashley Knoote-Parke, seemingly, disappeared off the face of the Earth around about 2015. Which is a story in itself. However, the book is still a very informative guide and, while not specifically targeted at women, many may relate more to a book written by an experienced female entrepreneur. Brand It Purple is a personal marketing and branding guide released in 2009 by then, star on the rise author, Ashley Knoote-Parke, an English born, South African expatriate, who made Adelaide, South Australia her home. There she started her own publishing company releasing a photographic, coffee table book of South Australian sights, along with books showcasing female, then male, entrepreneurs. As well she published 'Brand It Purple'. I came across the b

Movie Review: Zack Snyder's Rebel Moon Parts 1 and 2 (2023/2024)

I f you've ever wanted to see quasi-early nineteen hundreds, Irish farmers fight off high tech space Nazis, in slow motion, over two feature length films then  Rebel Moon Part 1: A Child on Fire  (2023) and  Rebel Moon Part 2: The Scargiver  (2024) could well be the movies you're looking for. Plot-wise that's really all they're about. There's some sub story inspired by Akira Kurosawa's  Seven Samurai  (1954) movie, and some other subplot about our main character, Kora (Sofia Boutella), being 'the one' person the Space Nazi's must apprehend for 'reasons' (she's some kind of murderous deserter, I think, but that doesn't seem reason enough to me for our main bad guy, Atticus Noble (Ed Skrein), to be so obsessed with apprehending her).  I think I've come to the conclusion that writer/director Zack Snyder, while great at casting, spectacle, cinema photography, and visual effects, he just doesn't know how to tell a story to people w

Skateboarding @50+ Reigniting the Learn Kickflips Battle

My skate coach, Oscar dog. O ne of the things I'd like to do before I get too old to do much more than roll around on a skateboard is relearn kickflips. Not that I ever had them on lock. I maybe landed a flat ground stationary kickflip no more than a handful of times, and I only remember landing one rolling kickflip because I had it on video tape for a second (recording over it because I only had a few Video 8 cassette tapes back in the 90s). I actually had a higher chance of landing a kickflip into a trick, on a curb, than landing just a stationary kickflip. Kickflip to; 50-50, to blunt, backside kickflip to tail, and even kickflipping out of a blunt. None of which I had on lock nor can do currently. Getting back into skateboarding again, after a year's break to let my sore feet heal, I started to try kickflips again and discovered I'm actually closer than ever to landing them. I'm able to commit with both feet staying in the air as the board flips. As opposed to tryin