Shazam review roundup: DC’s latest superhero ties Wonder Woman for franchise’s best score
The embargo has been lifted on reviews for Shazam, the final film in DC’s original slate of films. Critics have praised the superhero movie’s lighter tone, abundance of heart and humour. The film currently sits at a franchise-best score of 93% on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, tying it with 2017’s Wonder Woman.
The website’s consensus reads, “An effortlessly entertaining blend of humor and heart, Shazam! is a superhero movie that never forgets the genre’s real power: joyous wish fulfillment.”
Shazam’s positive reviews come at the tail end of what is considered as a second innings for the troubled film franchise - critically and commercially.
Writing for The Wrap, Alonso Duralde said that the film ‘captures the original comics’ combination of breezy heroism and nutty plotting, transferred from the 1940s to the modern era with great skill.’
The Associated Press’ Lindsey Bahr called it ‘a lightning bolt of unexpected joy that is certainly worth your time and money.’ The Guardian’s Benjamin Lee wrote, “Buoyant and unpretentious, Shazam! aims low and mostly succeeds, a kid-friendly caper powered with enough energy to keep its target audience engaged with a fun central conceit that plays like a cross between Big and Superman.”
Of the 57 reviews counted so far, the film has only four negative reviews, none of them coming from the site’s ‘top critics’. Shazam’s rating is a jump from the last DCEU outing, director James Wan’s box office behemoth Aquaman, which became the series’ first film to crack the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office, and eventually became the highest grossing DC film of all time. Aquaman has a 65% score on Rotten Tomatoes.
Shazam was among the first wave of films announced as part of the DCEU, originally intended as DC’s answer to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. After a rocky start that included the likes of Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad and Justice League, the series will now explore other characters in the future, with films such as Birds of Prey, a stand-alone Joker film and a Batman movie expected in the next couple of years, in addition to Wonder Woman and Aquaman sequels.
Shazam is directed by David F Sandberg and stars Zachary Levi and Asher Angel as the shape-shifting Billy Batson. The film is slated for an April 5 release.
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