Sunday, July 15, 2007

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

We went to see the second Fantastic Four movie, The Rise Of The Silver Surfer, the other night. It's set two years after the events of the first movie so here's the basic plot…
While Reed Richards (Ioan Gruffudd) and Sue Storm (Jessica Alba) are preparing for their wedding, a silver object enters Earth's atmosphere radiating cosmic energy that creates massive molecular fluctuations and causes deep craters at locations across the Earth. That cosmic energy also affects their old adversary, Victor Von Doom (Julian McMahon), freeing him from his metallic imprisonment.

When Johnny Storm (Chris Evans) chases the object, he discovers that it's an alien being (Laurence Fishburne), riding what appears to be a silver surfboard. Johnny's encounter, which he barely survives, has an unexpected side-effect in that, if he comes into contact with any of the other three heroes, their powers get swapped. Meanwhile, Dr. Doom tracks the alien and attacks him but he is easily defeated by an enormous blast of cosmic energy, which also restores his health and appearance. Trading on his experience, Doom convinces the military that he should be allowed to work again with the Fantastic Four in order to capture this creature and learn its purpose.

Of course, our heroes aren't happy about that and Doom has plans of his own as regards the alien and the alien, well he's only preparing the Earth for its destruction.

Silver Surfer
The Silver Surfer is a story line going back to 1966 and Fantastic Four #48 when he decided that the Earth would satisfy the hunger of his master Galactus, Devourer of Worlds. It's a fairly complex storyline and the Surfer is a much deeper character, which the film hasn't really had the scope to explore but I think they've done a pretty reasonable job given the time limitations. Comic purists won't like it of course but as a movie sequel, it's better than the original movie.

I'm still not convinced by the romance between Reed and Sue as I don't think Ioan Gruffudd carries the character of Richards that well. Jessica Alba, on the other hand, does an excellent job as Susan Storm. The banter between Johnny and Ben (Michael Chiklis) continues as before and these two really get most of the comic pieces, although the power swapping thing gives rise to quite a few humorous moments as well. Julian McMahon is back as Dr. Doom but doesn't really get as meaty a part as he had in the first movie; he's almost a side character for the majority of the movie. As seems traditional now, co-creator Stan Lee also gets a small cameo part in the movie.

We quite enjoyed this movie. The action keeps going along at a decent pace, the effects are pretty good all round and, if you liked the first movie, and some of you did, then this will satisfy your appetite for super-heroes even more. The Fantasticar is an added bonus!

Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Science-Fiction
My Rating: 7/10

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