First Wave Of FANTASTIC FOUR Reviews Are In And It Sounds Worse Than Expected

First Wave Of FANTASTIC FOUR Reviews Are In And It Sounds Worse Than Expected

The embargo has lifted (or been broken) for Josh Trank's Fantastic Four reboot, and based on comments here, the movie sounds even worse than many fans have been expecting. In fact, it's described as "a muddled and underdeveloped origin story." Hit the jump for details...

We weren't expecting the first reviews for Fantastic Four until tomorrow, but a number of sites have broken embargo and dropped their verdicts on the reboot early. Simply put, they don't have much nice to say about it! It's worth bearing in mind that all but one of these come from the trades, and they always tend to be pretty harsh on superhero movies. However, these aren't the same kind of mixed reviews we saw for Ant-Man last month; they're extremely harsh, with only the cast really emerging unscathed. The direction, screenplay, and special effects unfortunately aren't so lucky!

We'll find out more about the movie tomorrow when even more reviews surface, but it so far sounds like Fantastic Four is as bad as many of you have suspected since the early days of production. With rumours of chaos behind the scenes and up to 40 pages worth of reshoots, this perhaps shouldn't come as too much of a surprise. If it ends up being a hit of course, reviews won't matter, but this could put that rumoured crossover with the X-Men in serious jeopardy. Are the rights heading back to Marvel? That remains to be seen! What do you think of these verdicts?


But whatever strengths Fantastic Four has, it does not feel like a movie directed by Trank (who made such a striking debut with 2012's bold anti-superhero fable Chronicle) or for that matter by anyone. It's a muddled and underdeveloped origin story which segues jarringly from light-hearted adventure to heavy-handed grit, grasping for a gravitas that it hasn't earned. The biggest mistake here seems to have been trying to marry a dark and realistic tone with the story of four teenagers whose superpowers include transforming into rock, generating force fields and becoming very stretchy. While far from the unmitigated disaster some had predicted, Fantastic Four feels unlikely to kick-start a new franchise, barely sustaining the narrative steam to power itself through its modest 90-minute running time. [3/5]


SOURCE: Digital Spy

A sense of heaviness, gloom and complete disappointment settles in during the second half, as the mundane set-up results in no dramatic or sensory dividends whatsoever. Even if lip-service is paid to some great threat to life on Earth as we know it, the filmmakers bring nothing new to the formula, resulting in a film that's all wind-up and no delivery. If the writers couldn't think of anything interesting to do with these characters in this first series reboot, they do nothing to inspire the viewer to expect they could do something exciting with a sequel. Beginning with Teller and Jordan, who have done such promising early work, the cast is utterly wasted here with mostly rote explanatory dialogue and little conflict or nuance to work on a dramatic level. And the visual style is in a dark, unattractive gloomy mode that infects every aspect of the film. Near the end, Teller's Reed comments on the status of the group's actions by proclaiming, “We opened this door, we're gonna close it.” The sooner the better.


SOURCE: The Hollywood Reporter

After battling months of bad buzz about a troubled production and the need for reshoots, Fantastic Four emerges as a wounded animal of a superhero movie, only rarely showing flashes of the darker, more emotional breed of Marvel film it’s trying to be. Certainly, Fox’s rebooting of the franchise blessedly lacks the dopey irreverence of the 2005 version and its sequel, both directed by Tim Story, but Chronicle filmmaker Josh Trank struggles to balance an origin story, mediocre comic-book action, and a strained metaphor about dysfunctional families. A good cast led by Miles Teller gets swallowed up in a narrative that grows progressively more muddled and tedious.


SOURCE: ScreenDaily

Not helping matters is the sheer ugliness of the final battlefield; the digital fakery is so very obvious that it’s difficult to engage with their surroundings as an actual place. To its credit, the movie does a fine job of portraying Reed’s stretching, Ben’s craggy body and Sue’s force field. (Johnny, alas, suffers from having a very cartoony face when his flames are on.) With all this tedious Tinkertoy origin-story business out of the way, there could certainly be some entertaining “Fantastic Four” adventures in the future with this ensemble. Whether or not audiences will want to gamble another 100 minutes of their lives on subsequent chapters, however, is another matter entirely.


SOURCE: The Wrap

Ultimately, Fox’s stab at reviving one of its inherited Marvel properties feels less like a blockbuster for this age of comics-oriented tentpoles than it does another also-ran — not an embarrassment, but an experiment that didn’t gel. And having seemingly missed twice in trying to get “Fantastic Four” right, the studio, unlike Reed, might want to think seriously before making any more trips back to the drawing board...All told, the movie feels like a protracted teaser for a more exciting follow-up that, depending on whether audiences warm to this relatively low-key approach, might never happen.


SOURCE: Variety
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