The Fantastic Four – We watched it so you don't have to.

Spoilers ahead

Wonder Gal - Top three things you didn’t like about the movie. Go!

Clark Justice - Character development. Phoned-in acting. The last fight scene. 

WG - All of those things are easily attributed to the director/studio conflicts. Before the movie opened, director Josh Trank went on Twitter saying his original version would have been awesome, but the studio changed his vision. Trank's lack of communication on set (eventually causing LucasFilm to pull him from directing the second stand-alone "Star Wars" movie) led to poor acting. And the studio had to bring in extra help to get the project done, which makes me wonder if that is why the CGI looked so poor. The final scene had The Thing looking like bad animation, not cemented with the other actors.

CJ - Yes, he looked like he was made out of Play-Doh, not rock. All of these things added to the disconnected feeling throughout.

WG - I did like the first scene with Reed Richards and Ben Grimm as kids. But that was all the back story we saw. Too bad we didn’t get to see the young Storm kids as well.

CJ - Once Richards and Grimm were teens, the movie lost me.

WG - That was just plain boring. Everyone single character was flat. I found it impossible to grow attached to any. These are accomplished actors, so all we can point to is the director, the script and possibly, the reshooting for the lack of originality and chemistry. All are to blame.

I think the movie speaks more to the business of making movies. Sony has an obligation to use these Marvel characters or they lose the rights back to Marvel. These movie do make money overseas – even if they are bombs in the U.S. 

Do you think it is possible to make a good Fantastic Four movie?

CJ - I'm not a huge Fantastic Four fan. I think these characters don't resonate with comic readers or general movie audiences today. I don't even think they could last in today's comics unless they were tied to another group like Avengers or X-Men.

WG - Marvel stopped printing the comic last fall.

CJ - I say hang the franchise up or lease the characters back to Marvel like Sony is doing with Spiderman. But would it even be worth a shot? Does the general audience even care?

WG - Not as much as everyone is looking to new characters like Deadpool. I think the last foursome to do well with powers like these were The Incredibles.

CJ - Okay, let’s talk details. First off... Johnny Storm’s dad recruits him to come help build this portal machine saying, “He can build anything.” Then why in the world could he not build a decent car to drive in a drag race? 

WG - And, there was no explanation of why Ben Grimm was invited along for the teleport even though he wasn't involved with the project at all.

CJ - Exactly! This is supposed to be a highly secure facility yet Richards just tells the security guard, “It’s okay. He’s with me.” WHILE HE IS DRUNK!

WG - You know my top complaint right?

CJ - You mean, forgetting to invite Susan, who helped build the device, along for their secret trip to the other dimension?

WG - What was that about? In the original comic, Richards, Grimm, and the Storm siblings are ALL in the rocket that is exposed to radiation.

My main complaint about "Ant-Man" was how Hope van Dyne was left on the sidelines as the Wasp, even though she had more skills than Scott Lang. Leaving Sue behind from the trip that causes them all to become The Fantastic Four seems not just oddly random, but points again at comic movies ignoring women.

CJ - And how does she get her powers? Getting hit by an explosion.

There are really strong female characters in comics, yet they are just passed by over and over again. The Scarlet Witch in "The Avengers" is the only one who has been somewhat decent.

WG - Well, Black Widow. Never forget Black Widow.

As much as Trank points at the studio for messing with his movie, he was the one to make weird decisions like changing Victor Von Doom’s name in the original script. There are certain things you must keep consistent to make comic readers excited, and that was a big mistake. It’s no wonder that Sony had to reshoot all those scenes to revert his name back. 

J.J. Abrams made magic out of the Star Trek reboot by taking the most essential items to Star Trek - sound effect, humor, etc. - and then from there, he could launch a new movie series highly regarded not only by Trekkies, but general movie goers.

CJ - Trank kept nothing consistent except their powers. Except we don't get to see the their discovery of the powers. No fear of their powers. Not even a training montage.

WG - I will say, one interesting thing Trank tried to do was to make this a horror movie, ‘cause let’s be honest, limbs that go to rubber is pretty horrifying. Obviously, the studio didn't like that, and so due to reshooting, the horror bits are so few and far between adding to the inconsistencies.

CJ - It was only horrifying when Reed had the rubber arms, and when Dr. Doom was making peoples heads explode.

I was really annoyed at the lack of character development in this movie. No building of the brother/sister relationship. Not much arc to the anger/hate of Richards abandoning the rest of the team to the government. Johnny is angry at his Dad for making him work at the lab, and yet when he arrives, he is happy and ready to help out. 

I did love how during the final fight scene when Richards is giving his “Go. Fight. Win.” speech, you starting cringing and saying, “Please stop talking. Please stop talking.”

WG - Such bad writing…

CJ - It all boils down to this for me. You can’t take really good actors and expect them to save a movie. It takes a great script, director and development. None of those things delivered or saved the day.

WG - Thus, we have a terrible movie.

CJ - Fantastic it was not.

WG - Amen. So, do you agree with the internet, was this as bad as "Catwoman"?

CJ - "Catwoman" was definitely not better than this but still it doesn’t say much. 

WG - Well, that's at least something.


Enjoy this trailer from the never released Fantastic Four movie from 1994! 

 
 
FANTASTIC FOUR (1961) #1 Published: November 08, 1961

FANTASTIC FOUR (1961) #1
Published: November 08, 1961


Final Ratings

Wonder Gal

Nothing disappointed me more than the woman hero once again getting side-lined.

Best part for me, a reminder of what a bad superhero movie is like. I will be adjusting my Ant-Man rating.

Clark Justice

I just want to put this "Insignificant Four" movie as far out of my memory banks as possible. 

The best parts of the movie - trailers for next year's Deadpool and Star Wars, out this November.