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'Aquaman' Review – Jason Momoa Is What the Aquaman Movie Needed

Justice League The Rushed Crown Jewel in the DC Extended Universe, is an awkward task but a theoretical cinch , Marvel Studios, Warner Bros. Never 1945 movie movie instead of turning it into a mad dash to replicate the [Margold] The Avengers in a fraction of the time at a much higher cost.

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Doing better than Justice League in other words, does not take much. WB picked Aquaman Justice League : Coming out of 2017, the DCEU has been looking like it was underwater. Aquaman puts genre prodigy James Wan in the director's chair, with Jason Momoa reprising the character following Zack Snyder's meandering superhero rumpus.

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But is Momoa raising the bar for the DCEU movies? [1965)[Wan'spedigreeisdefinedbypartofdollars] Saw, Insidious, The Conjuring ) Furious 7 .Wan is not the question mark in Aquaman . It's Momoa. Sure, everybody loves to love Jason: Already well-liked by geeks Stargate Atlantis Momoa became unforgettable in the very same year of Game of Thrones and whether in bit parts Drunk History or supporting roles in gonzo genre-benders like The Bad Batch

The real question is: Is he a leading man? Can he translate his best successes, mostly minor, into the child of stardom that's necessary to hold up tentpoles? In short: Yes. Aquaman rules, and Momoa rules in it, reminding us that Justice League 's screenplay appeared tailor-made to turn him into a finned meme, he had a ball playing the character regardless , Released from the crippling demands of franchise maintenance, Momoa has room to breathe and fill up the screen with his charisma, derived as much from his inborn swagger as his glorious mane and ferocious beard.

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That there's a lot by movie in Aquaman makes Momoa's job a bit complicated. Wan lays out Arthur's origin story, introduces two of the character's comic book nemeses, gives him a love interest, and saddles him with a destiny he must fulfill in order to save the world. Thomas Morrison (Temuera Morrison), Māori lighthouse keeper living in Maine, and Atlanna (Nicole Kidman), princess of Atlantis, who was ashore ashore on Thomas' island during a nor'easter. They fall in love, passionate love, but of course Atlanta has come to love Atlantis to protect Thomas and Arthur from the kingdom's revenge on the family, and Arthur grows up to outcast, a boy from two worlds deprived of his only connection to one of Themes

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Adult Arthur protects the seas from threats, including pirates like Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II). But his birthright calls him to the home he never knew when his half-brother, Orm (Patrick Wilson), coerces other aquatic kingdoms into declaring was on the surface and from there Aquaman gets weird in a good way , The movie is a literal trip. Wan takes viewers hopping from New England to the Sahara to Sicily; he makes full use of the bucks in each frame, tying together psychedelic visuals and two-fisted adventure with enough cinematic reference points that you'll run out of fingers to count them before the first hour's done. Flash Gordon The Lord of the Rings The Fifth Element Indiana Jones and The Descent and you more or less have a grasp on Wan's shooting for here. It's enough computer-generated madness and set-piece mania that any talented movie star could loose themselves in it.

Momoa, however, jumps headfirst into Aquaman 's material, pushing the boundaries of his caddishness to see how much he can get away with. In the short lineage of the DCEU, this playful quality is surprisingly refreshing. Director Patti Jenkins and star Gadot do the same in Wonder Woman but Princess Diana's a more serious character in a more straight-faced movie. Arthur is something of a slacker demigod who's about to forget about Atlantis and politics and martial conflict, and the movie built around him features fish-soldiers riding sharks and mosasaurs into battle against crab-men. There's a Godzilla-like creature voiced by OG Mary Poppins Julie Andrews.

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It's dizzying, delightful, and completely bonkers. And momoa, with sly grins, a flip of a duster coat, a steely gaze at the camera, and an earnestly delivered low-key punchline, fits right at home among its excesses. He's a bigger-than-life personality well-suited to a larger-than-life blockbuster.

To give full credit, Momoa gets great help from his supporting cast, Wilson as the perfect oily villain, Willem Dafoe as Arthur's mentor in all things Atlantean, or, most of all, Amber Heard as his sidekick and main squeeze-to-be, Mera. She's the Leia to his Han Solo, a no-nonsense foil for Momoa's incorrigible goof-off heroism. Justice League denied him both.

With Aquaman Momoa has shaken off Snyder's myopic filmmaking in exchange for Wan's flexible, unabashed direction. He more than fills out that strange skin-tight gold-and-green suit; he makes it flourish.

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