2.5/10 As happy as I am about new CEO/President of Warner Brothers Discovery David Zaslav making some much needed changes to WB/DC (canceling “Batgirl” and other woke garbage that no one asked for was 100% the right call), his tenure is still off to a…rocky…start with “Black Adam”, which should be way better than it is considering that it has supposedly been in development since 2008. One of the biggest problems with this massive disappointment that no one is talking about is the character of Black Adam himself. Like my least favorite main superhero, Superman, Black Adam is simply too strong/powerful to ever feel like he is in real danger of being defeated. He is also a one note character as The Rock pretty much maintains the exact same facial expression for 95% of the movie. He is a rather boring character who we as the audience can’t relate to. Spider-Man is relatable because he is a teenager who deals with real world struggles like finding the courage to ask out his crush and keeping his grades up. Batman is relatable because he doesn’t have super powers. He is simply a man taking the law into his own hands who could potentially be killed at any moment. Superman and Black Adam are God like figures who we can’t relate to. I never felt connected to him throughout the movie. The plot is as generic as they come, culminating in a CGI battle at the end with a mindless zombie army to distract the human characters. The only thing missing was a sky beam to check off every superhero movie cliché. Speaking of CGI, there is way too much of it here. When the Academy Awards gives out their Best Visual Effects Oscar, it actually goes to the film with the best USE OF visual effects. If they were to give out the Oscar for the MOST visual effects, “Black Adam” would get it as it seems that visual effects are forced into every shot of the movie, making it feel like I’m watching more of a computer game than a movie. Black Adam has to repeatedly remind the audience that he is not a hero, yet his actions pretty much fall in line with what a hero does. He kills bad people and protects the innocent. Yet since he fights with a member of The Justice Society (Hawkman, played by Aldis Hodge), we are supposed to believe that he borders on being a villain or something. Speaking of the supporting cast, Noah Centineo plays Atom Smasher and Quintessa Swindell plays Cyclone. Both characters get so little development and feel forced in to where if you removed them from the movie, virtually nothing would change. It doesn’t help that Atom Smasher is a rip off of Ant-Man (but dressed as Deadpool) and Cyclone is a rip off of Storm from the X-Men. The comic relief is supposed to come from Atom Smasher by way of him always being hungry and eating snacks, which last I checked is just a basic human function and not tied to hilarity in any way. The other unfunny form of supposed comic relief is Mohammed Amer as Karim and he completely falls flat when it comes to comedy as well. We get some cringe dialogue early on from Bodhi Sabongui as Amon that is supposed to be social commentary but it feels completely out of place in a movie that just requires you to turn off your brain. Speaking of Amon, one of his character traits is that he rides a skateboard around and whenever there is a chase scene with him on his skateboard, there always magically happens to be a ramp of some kind (even in areas with stairs everywhere) so he can keep going, which felt ridiculous. As if the architecture had been set up with an annoying kid fleeing on a skateboard was the top priority with its construction. Henry Winkler has a totally random cameo that feels more like a distraction than an actual character role. The score is forgettable and following “Jungle Cruise”, this is Jaume Collet-Serra’s second movie in a row with The Rock that has been a disappointment, although to be fair it is the script that is the main problem, not the direction. As for what works, the best part of the movie was Pierce Brosnan as Dr. Fate. Not only does he give the best performance in the movie but his interactions and chemistry with Hodge’s Hawkman provided the only real emotional moments with any kind of payoff. There are a few stylistic shots that look really good and the pacing works fine so you are entertained from start to finish. That being said, this movie feels like it is coming ten years too late (The Rock just starting to play a superhero at age 50 feels ill advised), completely overuses its CGI, has a forgettable villain, horrible attempts at comedy and a protagonist that I didn’t care about at all. Setting up for the inevitable fight against Superman might yield better results in the future but this is not the proper way to course correct the DC cinematic universe.

#WhackAdam / #AdamOfColor / #HawkmanVsRockman / #TheDrFateOfTheFurious / #BlackAtom / #ACyCloneOfBetterFilms

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