Shazam! Review

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Shazam!, is the seventh installment in the DC Extended Universe, (DCEU). The movie was directed by David F. Sandberg, a screenplay written by Henry Gayden, and a story by Gayden and Darren Lemke. The film stars Asher Angel as Billy Batson, a teenager who can transform into an adult superhero, played by Zachary Levi. Mark Strong, Jack Dylan Grazer, and Djimon Hounsou also star in this film. Development of a live-action Shazam! film began at New Line in the early 2000s, however, the film was delayed for many years. The film went into pre-production in 2009, being directed by Peter Segal, writer John August, and Dwayne Johnson.

Johnson was to be considered the star super-villain Black Adam, however, the project fell through, and Johnson became the executive producer. William Goldman, Alec Sokolow, Joel Cohen, Bill Birch, and Geoff Johns were all writers at various points in the production. The film was officially announced in 2014, with Johnson starring as Shazam or Black Adam. However, he would later be cast in January 2017, to lead a solo movie over Black Adam. Sandberg signed on to direct Shazam! in February 2017, with Levi being cast in October, and Angel being cast the following month. Principal photography started in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on January 29, 2018.

Shazam! was released in the United States by Warner Bros. Pictures in RealD 3D, Dolby Cinema, and IMAX 3D on April 5, 2019. The film has grossed over $322 million worldwide and has received praise from critics for Sandberg’s direction and performances by Levi, Angel, and Grazer, with a sequel currently in development.

The movie starts in the year of 1974, during Christmas, where we meet the super-villain, Thaddeus Sivana, who is arguing with his older brother and father. He is then transported to the Rock of Eternity, a magical temple hidden in another dimension. Thaddeus is then asked if he was pure of heart from the wizard Shazam, who then puts him in a trial, with the Seven Deadly Sins. Thaddeus fails the trial, and the wizard tells him he will never be pure of heart.

The movie then fasts forwards to the present day, where we meet our young hero Billy Batson, who is waiting outside a pawn shop where two officers pull up and ask where the robber is. Billy replies that he went to the back of the building and follows the officers, who say there is no one there. Billy then pulls the gate over the door, and uses the quad car computer for his mother, and takes one of the officers’ lunch.

Upon arriving at the house, Billy is destroyed that this woman was not his mother, and the previous officer finds him and asks if he left any food from his lunch. Billy is then adopted by two foster parents, who are fostering five other children. Thaddeus then finds a way to return to the Rock of Eternity, being rejected by the wizard, where he steals the Eye of Sin, making him the host for the Sins’, where he beats the wizard and returns to Earth. On his first day of school, Billy beats up two bullies after beating his foster brother Freddie, where he leads them to a subway station. After the chase, Billy is transported to the Rock of Eternity, where the wizard gives Billy his powers and turns him into Shazam.

For this movie taking a while in production, the movie turned out to be great from, fight scenes, Easter eggs, and comical humor. The main strong point of the movie would be Shazam learning his superhero abilities with his brother Freddie, with some humor also during this part of the movie. The weak point would be near the beginning of the movie, where Thaddeus is playing with his magic eight-ball, and he and his brother get into a pointless argument over manhood.

The movie had many fun points of humor, and moments of Billy learning what a family is, and searching for his birth mother. However, the fight scenes had most of the best points of humor. The quality of the movie is amazing, with clear fight scenes and amazing graphics for the Sins’. The Sins’ also had good screen time, with them appearing mainly in fight scenes, but also when Thaddeus gets revenge on his father. Overall, I would give this movie a five out of five stars, and recommend this movie to DC fans and viewers interested in superhero movies.