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   THE FANTASTIC FOUR (2005) 

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CAST
Ioan Gruffudd
Jessica Alba
Chris Evans
Michael Chiklis
Julian McMahon
Hamish Linklater
Kerry Washington
Laurie Holden
David Parker

DIRECTED BY
Tim Story

PURCHASE


DVD




Time: 106 mins.
Rating: PG-13
Genre: Action/Sci-Fi/Super Hero


SYNOPSIS: A group of astronauts gain superpowers after exposure to cosmic radiation and must use them to oppose the plans of their enemy, Doctor Victor Von Doom.

BOTTOM LINE: There are plenty of words I could use to describe this film, but fantastic isn't one of them. All I could think while watching it was "This is what we've been waiting decades for?" The only reason this film gets a star at all is because of Michael Chicklis. Despite pounds of makeup he brought the plight and power of the Thing brilliantly to life. As for the rest of them, Chris Evans gave the film some spark with his childish, yet charming behavior as Johnny Storm, but the main story – the love triangle between Reed Richards, Susan Storm and Victor Von Doom – was woefully acted and painfully underwritten. Though I certainly didn't want the film to be any longer, the writers never give you a chance to get to know these characters before they blow their lives apart.

A few flashbacks in the beginning would have gone a long way to establishing who these people are and why we should care. A few sentences of "witty" banter are not enough to establish an age-old rivalry or a broken heart. McMahon was way over the top as the demented Dr. Doom, but at least he was having fun with his role. Alba and Gruffudd were totally miscast and had absolutely no chemistry, a real problem for the first couple of superherodom and this film since their relationship is the main focus. Thank God for the soul of Chicklis and the humor of Evans. The group eventually bands together to stop the burgeoning menace of Von Doom, which is the best part of the film. Unfortunately, it only lasts for about 15 minutes. It also comes off as more of a lover's spat than a real threat to the world, but you can't have everything. I wasn't looking for non-stop action, just a film with more emotional depth than a puddle. Fans of the comic should avoid this like the plague, those who aren't are given no reason to bother.




"A few days in space. What's the worst that could happen?"

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