Certificate – 12A
Directed By – David F. Sandberg
Starring – Zachary Levi, Mark Strong, Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Grazer, Grace Fulton, Djimon Hounsou.
Running Time – 132 Minutes (2 Hours 12 Minutes)
Kicking off a big April in cinemas is DC returning to the big screening after Aquaman became a billion dollar success, this time we’re introduced to the world of Shazam!
What is Shazam about?
While it’s all fun and games for Billy, and best friend Freddy (Grazer), as the teen learns what superpowers he may have and now being able to do adult things like getting beer. However, Batson will have master his abilities quickly in order to fight the deadly forces under the control of evil Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Strong).
We all have an inner superhero and in the case of Billy Batson (Angel), all he has to do is shout the word SHAZAM!, and this 14-year-old foster kid becomes the adult superhero Shazam (Levi) thanks to an ancient wizard.
SHAZAM stands for – the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the courage of Achilles and the speed of Mercury.
Is it any good?
Absolutely! Shazam is an incredibly enjoyable film and director Sandberg has done a fantastic job of bringing 80s and 90s family films into the superhero genre.
Sandberg does wonderfully as he was able to bring in his horror background to this film as there are some scary moments and upsetting elements, especially around the main topic of family.
While family is a big part of the Fast and Furious franchise, it’s the core of this movie from the beginning and what makes a family and this film presents two different sides of the same coin.
As for the cast, they were fantastic. Grazer steals the whole film and is every teenager in 2019 and was definitely me when I was going up and me now as I’ve got way too much DC superhero tees.
Elsewhere, Hollywood has a new leading man in the form of Levi as he was not only able to look like a superhero but act as what every teen’s idea of what being a grown-up is like and he’s more of a kid compared to Angel’s defensive, driven and insecure Batson.
Meanwhile, Strong’s Sivana is a villain with an awful backstory and you can understand and sometimes route for the reasons he becomes so evil and I do hope we see more of him in a sequel.
As for the rest of the cast they’re great Faithe Herman is adorable and steals your heart, Ian Chen is a mini badass and Grace Fulton is the spark of the film. I hope we get to see more of Cooper Andrews and Marta Milans folk parents moving forward.
What’s also lovely is this is also a Christmas film and Sandberg has nods to old school family films like Ghostbusters, Elf and Big and in the case of Levi maybe a little bit of Adam West’s Batman?
I love Benjamin Wallifisch and you can tell he was inspired by John Williams as highlighted in Shazam’s theme as there are similar beats to Williams’ Superman theme and it’s beautiful and magic as if you’d hear it a Steven Speilberg movie back in the day.
Finally, this does take place in the DCEU as there are nods to Man of Steel as well as Freddy being the biggest fanboy in the universe.
Anything Bad About The Film?
No, not at all.
Just more minor things like sometimes the CGI wasn’t the best but you have to remember it had nearly the third of other major superhero blockbusters.
The only other thing was that I got spoiled by some of the things beforehand and slightly pissed off they revealed it.
Are there Mid and End Credit Scenes?
Yes to both and I’m only mentioning it because the mid-credit scene is the most David F Sandberg thing and I know this is something he’ll have a great joy working with if he signs on for the sequel.
A film that brings the old in 2019, Shazam is an utter delight and an enjoyable time at the cinema. Fantastic performances by Grazer and Levi and a film with plenty of heart.