Reel Reviews: Aquaman

Aquaman

I guess, perhaps, I am in the DCCU minority: I actually dig what has been done thus far. I am on the pole that enjoyed Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel and I didn’t think Dawn of Justice was complete hogwash. I accept David Ayer’s Suicide Squad finding it fun and highly entertaining. I think Patty Jenkins did amazing with Wonder Woman. I know Justice League broadened the DCCU’s horizons, despite its hiccups. Now with James Wan’s Aquaman—starring Jason Momoa (Braven), Amber Heard (London Fields), Patrick Wilson (The Nun), Willem Dafoe (Murder on the Orient Express), Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (The Greatest Showman), and Graham McTavish (The Finest Hours)—I believe the DCCU has finally received the shot-in-the-arm it needed.

Aquaman follows the life of half-human, half-Atlantean Arthur Curry (Momoa), The Aquaman. After helping some super-friends save the world, Arthur just wants to thwart pirates and drink morning pints with his pops. After Arthur’s half-brother Orm (Wilson) ascends to the Atlantan throne and makes his play to become Ocean Master, his old mentor Vulko (Dafoe) sends Mera (Heard) to find the lost son of Atlantis. Bringing Arthur back to Atlantis so he my claim his birthright is no easy task, especially when he doesn’t want anything to do with birthrights or kingdoms. Mera, not a person to take no for an answer, succeeds in her mission. Arthur challenges Orm. However, just as Arthur is to be defeated Mera brakes Atlantean law by interfering with ritual combat, rescuing Arthur and escaping onto dry land. Needing to find the trident of King Atlan (McTavish) the first King of Atlantis in order to defeat Orm and his armies, Mera and Arthur go in search of the artifact while running from Orm’s human enforcer Manta (Abdul-Mateen II). As Arthur comes to terms with what he must do, he learns that there is something greater than being a king—being a hero.

Aquaman is by far the wildest, most entertaining, visually stunning installment in the DCCU yet. From pre- to post-production you can tell that the cast and crew where committed to giving audiences the best possible film they could create. The writing, directing and acting is superb, and not “Just for a superhero movie” but good for any movie genre. James Wan and Jason Momoa have made Aquaman cool. I just want to be friends with Jason Momoa. He has grown on me as a leading-man and a human-being. That being admitted, I would say go see Aquaman on the big screen so you too can view it in all its splendor. Now go on out and have some fun at the movies!