Verdict: Ride DC’s tidal wave of epic CGI with humorous ripples.
After making a cameo in two other DC films – Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League – the rightful King of Atlantis finally gets his own full-length feature. Bringing to life James Wan’s vision, the towering mountain-man Jason Momoa returns to play Aquaman. With more than enough hype around the film, fans have been waiting to see what DC had to offer with this underwater superhero’s story. Now, it’s finally time to find out!
What’s Aquaman About:
It all begins back in 1985 when a lighthouse keeper named Tom Curry (Temuera Morrison) finds a woman washed ashore. It turns out that the woman, named Atlanna (Nicole Kidman), is the actual queen of Atlantis who has fled from an arranged marriage. The two soon fall in love and have a half-Earthling, half-Atlantean son christened Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa).
As the years go by Arthur Curry is trained into his Atlantean abilities by Atlantis’ vizier Vulko (Willem Dafoe) while still living life on land. However, as Princess Mera (Amber Heard) heads to the surface to seek Aquaman’s help, he finds out that his half-brother King Orm (Patrick Wilson) has other plans in mind. Fed up with the land-dwellers who are destroying the waters with pollution, the war-hungry mongrel will do anything to gain the title of Ocean Master. He even teams up with underwater pirate David Kane, soon to be Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), who wants nothing but to seek revenge from Arthur. At war in both his homes, it is now up to Aquaman to bring peace between the land and sea.
DC comes up for breath of fresh air with Aquaman. It drifts away from trying to recreate the super successful brooding grittiness of Zach Snyder films and instead injects some much needed lightness to the universe. Saying that, it’s refreshing to see a superhero movie that can take something from both extremes because it’s also got some serious heart.
Speaking of the super promising cast, they’re as amazing as you’d expect. Jason Momoa’s got everything going for him as Aquaman. He’s the tough yet balanced big guy with a sarcastic and light-hearted approach. Amber Heard’s Mera is shown from a lot of different perspectives as she goes from a valiant do-gooder princess to an Atlantean tourist falling for the charms of the land world. Willem Dafoe brings his brilliance to his vital role in the film. Patrick Wilson is convincing with his menacing intentions but Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is the one who really delivers as the revenge-hungry Black Manta. Let’s not forget Nicole Kidman who, with her brief role in the film, excels as the badass Queen Atlanna.
When it comes down to it, it’s the brazenly bonkers CGI that makes this film a thoroughly entertaining watch. James Wan manages to balance the ship that’s overcrowded with characters and subplots to create a smooth sailing adventure that’s awesome to look at.
What Could’ve Been Better:
Aquaman is very often hilariously melodramatic and, although it is also packed with a lot of converging rivers, it does lead up to an epic climax with an elaborately grand final battle.
Why You Should Watch:
Aquaman is DC’s successful attempt to create one of it’s best films since Dark Knight. It’s awesome to look at, it doesn’t take itself too seriously, and it’s a wild adventure. So check it out in IMAX and just enjoy the spectacle!