<Review by: Sailesh Ghelani>


Directed by James Wan. Starring Jason Mamoa, Amber Heard, Nicole Kidman, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren, Temuera Morrison, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II

Running time: 2 hours 23 minutes


Expecting a DC film to be good is pointless. I’m not someone who believes Marvel films are classic gems, but at least they have high levels of quality control. Aquaman, despite a stellar cast of actors, sinks miserably.

From the very beginning of the film you just know it’s going to be a long CGI-filled ride. Watching young versions of Nicole Kidman as Atlanna and Temuera Morrison as her husband Tom Curry, with their CGI, motion-captured faces plastered on to hopefully real bodies is pure horror. You can make out they’re fake and that takes away from every scene. I read that director James Wan was furious Aquaman didn’t get nominated for a VFX award at the Oscars (Read about that here). Thank God they know better. This film had some of the shittiest CGI I’ve ever seen. You could make it out in almost every scene. Terrible!


And that’s another thing. If they wanted so much CGI, then why not just make an animated film. Sony did it with Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and they just won a Golden Globe for Best Animated Film.

The story about the half-breed, off-worlder Aquaman (Jason Mamoa) and the half-brother animosity between him and Orm (Patrick Wilson) is worn and predictable. And it all goes on and on for so long just to showcase a bunch of VFX tricks and demonstrate where all the millions have gone. Certainly not into a script, direction or frankly even the cheap-looking CGI. I’ve watched enough films to see that. Some people have loved the film, clearly showing that if you put enough animation into a real-life action film, people will be beguiled enough by it to think it’s great stuff.


Jason Mamoa delivers his lines pitch perfect and has a good sense of humour. No fault with him or frankly any of the other actors, including Dolph Lundgren as Nereus. They’re all bang on, but lousy dialogue, a story that plays out like a child is making it up as he goes along (which could have been slightly more interesting than this) and a whole lot of bad VFX flooding the screen with not much doing anything for the 3D aspect of the movie, all mean that someone with a little bit of taste will certainly find this a salty piece of cinema.

So far, only Wonder Woman from DC has shown any merit. She deserves more sequels. And let’s have a black, gay Batman next!

PS: OMG, I totally forgot the bad guy, Black Mantis (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) and his story line that are really forgettable and do nothing for the story arc.


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