Thursday, 13 December 2018

A Fant4stic chance to do it right

REBOOTS of comic book classics on the big screen are met with a degree of cynicism

REBOOTS of comic book classics on the big screen are met with a degree of cynicism on my part, particularly if they come around so soon after the first attempt.

Why rehash something that’s already been done? And what makes you think you know what the audience really wants from the franchise?

In short, it suggests â?? dare I say it â?? a kind of laziness and lack of originality.

That said, it may be argued that if the team behind Fantastic Four are willing to take the risk they must be pretty sure what they’ve come with is on the money given that the last two films, to fans at least, will be fresh in the memory.

It must said, though, that those films â?? 2005’s Fantastic Four and the sequel Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer two years later â?? ventured into the territory that many often do. Namely, a special effects-laden cheesefest catering for a younger demographic.

Let’s hope, then, that this “reimagining” does what Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins did for the caped crusader.

The four in question are Marvel’s longest-running superhero team and we start afresh with the young outsiders who are teleported to an alternate and dangerous universe which alters their physical form in shocking ways.

As in many superhero films showing the origins of the characters, the team must come to terms with their new and daunting abilities and, in this case, work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy, Dr Doom.

For the uninitiated, Reed Richards, or Mr Fantastic, can stretch his body into impossible forms and to incredible lengths. Sue Storm has the power to become the Invisible Woman and to generate her own force fields, while Johnny Storm has the ability to shoot fireballs and fly at breakneck speeds as the Human Torch. Ben Grimm can transform himself into the Thing, with a stone body giving him epic strength.

While it will no doubt add a new dimension to Marvel’s cinematic empire, and spawn a sequel, the biggest battle it may face is holding its own against the other contenders in the summer blockbuster season.

Not only will it be up against Ant-Man, Marvel’s other offering this summer, but the ever popular Mission: Impossible series, which is currently on our screens with the fifth instalment, Rogue Nation.

Fantastic Four is now showing at Henley’s Regal Picturehouse.

Review: David White

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