DC Comics has not been able to make a great film since they started trying to copy Marvel’s style and themes. More often than not, DC is able to make a decent film that isn’t blatantly copying Marvel. However, one exception to this rule is the recent DC film “Black Adam.”
Released on Oct. 21, 2022, the film stars Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as the titular character Teth-Adam/Black Adam. The film’s main plot revolves around the civilization of Kahndaq, which is under the control of Intergang, an organized crime syndicate. Archaeologist and resistance fighter Adrianna Tomaz (Sarah Shahi) awakens Teth-Adam from a slumber, causing Teth-Adam to kill multiple Intergang members. After being deemed a threat by Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), the Justice Society of America is tasked to apprehend Adam, with the team consisting of Doctor Fate (Pierce Brosnan), Hawkman (Aldis Hodge), Atom Smasher (Noah Centineo) and Cyclone (Quintessa Swindell). Both the Justice Society and Teth-Adam must work together to stop the supervillain Ishmael/Sabbac (Marwan Kenzari) from taking over Kahndaq.
Production for the film was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but it finally started on Apr. 10, 2021, and concluded in Sept. 2022, one month before the film was officially released. The original script for the film tried to combine both Black Adam and Shazam, who is a version of Black Adam, and make a movie that way. However, the film would not be able to develop both of these superheroes as their own individual characters. In an effort to make things go a bit more smoothly and really develop both Shazam and Black Adam’s individual characters, producer Hiram Garcia said that his depiction of Black Adam would go more toward the violent side of the character as much as his superhero aspect.
“Black Adam” does a pretty good job with establishing the setting in which the film takes place in. DC Comics is widely known for its fictional locations, whereas Marvel uses real-life locations such as New York. The world of Kahndaq on the screen looked very beautiful and had an Egyptian feel to it. I also was very impressed with the lore that is behind Black Adam. The idea that the character is based on Egyptian mythology is a very interesting concept, and I love that. Johnson and Brosnan’s performances were also entertaining and made the movie stand out.
However, with those positives, I really did not enjoy this movie as much as I would have liked to. The story was just not that interesting, and I could not figure out what was going on with the plot. The story was more character-driven rather than plot-driven, and it really killed the mood for me. I also was not a fan of a lot of the characters and their decision-making skills. Other than Johnson and Brosnan’s characters, everyone else had barely any character development, and most of them didn’t particularly contribute to the story other than Adrianna, since she was a main character that drives the story home. But the main problem with the characters that are not Johnson or Bronson was that the decisions they made were just some of the most stupid things I have ever come across. One decision that the characters made was so stupid, it made me groan in the theater, but I don’t want to add any spoilers in here.
Overall, this film was just not very good at all. It has a lot of problems, and it did not deserve its own stand-alone film.
Title: “Black Adam”
Director: Jaume Collet-Sera
Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Pierce Brosnan, Marwan Kenzari
If you like: “Shazam,” “Justice League”
Shamrocks: 2 out of 5
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