Anyone Can Be Worthy if Given a Chance. 3 / 5
Directed by David F. Sandberg
Billy Batson and his foster siblings, who transform into superheroes by saying “Shazam!”, are forced to get back into action and fight the Daughters of Atlas.
The original Shazam! was a welcome breath of fresh air away from the mess that DC was in, and in some ways still is. I had hope that even in 2023, Shazam! could return to do the same but with the almighty Gunn/Safran reset on the horizon and a less than inspiring marketing campaign, it seems that lightening couldn't strike twice.
Fury of the Gods leaves behind the child-like whimsy that made the first such a hidden gem and replaces it with generic one-note villains, bland CGI and uncompelling stakes. I knew something was up when I was more invested in Jack Dylan Grazer and Djimon Hounsou's B-plot than I was in the main story. In fact, their chemistry and performances were one of the film's highlights.
It's a shame to see something that was once so full of life fall so flat - it's nowhere a terrible film, David F. Sandberg does his best with what he was given but now is time to cash out and make some more unnerving horror. Asher Angel gives a much more mature performance in his limited screen time showing Billy's growth even given his new family and hero insecurities. However, it's a shame that no one passed that message to Zachary Levi who continues to play the role like a sugar-fuelled pre-teen.
Adding to the superhero fatigue, Shazam! Fury of the Gods isn't awful, but it's far from great, sitting in that frustrating grey area where it will drift into obscurity before The Flash gets anywhere near the big screen.