Movie Review – Aquaman

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Starting out with Man of Steel before going the route of Batman v Superman to Suicide Squad, the modern day DC Cinematic Universe has had a rough time. The OG of Super-Heroes with Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman and the original Superman movie (currently hitting it’s 40th anniversary, and getting some limited 4K remastered screenings to celebrate) you would think that DC would be on top when it comes to comics to film.

But in the Darkest Night will the King of the Seas save the DCEU? The short answer, yes. Because he is Awesome.

In case you aren’t familiar with Aquaman or just used to the more Superfriends version there is a lot more to him than an orange tunic and talking to fish. The Son of a Lighthouse Keeper and the Queen of Atlantis who was on the run at the time (and not named Martha), Aquaman/Arthur/Orin was born half human/half Atlantian. Living his formative years on land he eventually learnt his lineage including that he is the first born son to the Atlantian Throne and potentially the future King.

That’s the cliff notes version as Aquaman has been around for a long time. He first appeared in 1941 just one month after Wonder Woman (and 2 years after Superman/Batman). The sworn protector of the oceans, Aquaman has gone through it all in the comics. Even that 90’s edgy revamp phase where he lost his hand to some piranas and replaced it with a Harpoon. If you really want to catch up on some Aquaman post the new film we would recommend jumping on at the New52 point and Geoff John’s excellent run which has more than a little in common with the new film.

The latest film from DC is a continuation of the existing DC film universe. Originally announced as set before Justice League as an origin story we are happy to report that this is not the case with the final product. Set after Justice League as the last film in the DC cinematic which first introduced Aquaman played by Game of Throne’s Jason Momoa this film was actually largely produced on the Gold Coast.

The first full film developed under Geoff Johns as the DC version of Kevin Feige and created without Zack Synder. We first felt that this film was going to be something different from the previous films when we saw the first full trailers. Long gone were the dark and washed out colours, replaced with vibrant colours and bright heroes and hitting screens the full film lives up to that feeling.

Not just in colour but in tone as well. While anyone who has read a DC and a Marvel Comic will know there is a different feel and tone to them, and that is captured in the film. Not aiming to copy what the MCU has been doing so well the new Aquaman film creates a new more hopeful and inspirational feel to the DC film Universe that we can only hope is the new benchmark for all films to come.

So should you go see it? Well in case you haven’t figured it out yet Aquaman is our pick for the best film in DC Film and what we hope is effectively a soft reboot with all films past this point following suit. While hugely action-packed (seriously, everyone kicks butt in this movie – even Nicole Kidman), Aquaman shows solid footing with the source material which just creates a well written and extremely entertaining movie. If Aquaman is the new high watermark for the DC Cinematic then we don’t need Flashpoint we are so in.

Aquaman is in Australian Cinemas on Boxing Day

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Story and Characters
Visuals and Effects
Enjoyment Factor
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