One of the rare superhero movies I haven’t seen, Shazam is a DC movie that takes a different approach to normal superhero movies from this studio.
Shazam! (2019) Film Review
Being a foster kid, Billy Batson (Asher Angel) knows how to survive. He’s scrappy and creates situations that work for him. One being finding resources to help him in his search for the mother he remembers but has been lost to him for years. When his last strike and chance places him in a group home with five other kids, and foster parents who seem to care, Billy has to plot what’s next. Eager to make a new friend and find common ground, his new foster brother Freddy (Jake Dylan Grazer) befriends him. Trouble is, Billy isn’t sure he wants this.
In a series of events, he’s transported to a dark cave where a wizard resides. A wizard with a magical plea. He needs someone pure of heart to take on his power and protect good people from the current threat of evil which is Dr. Sivana (Mark Strong). Through this arrives Shazam (Zachary Levi), a bigger and stronger version of Billy who isn’t quite sure what to make of this alter ego.
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Despite wanting to watch this for quite some time, my more recent disenchantment of superhero films dissuaded me from seeing this. Nonetheless I finally saw it and must confess I did enjoy it. This is helped by the fact that Zachary Levi is an easily likable character. Here he plays the role no differently. While he doesn’t appear until a good 20 plus minutes in, he still is memorable. His mannerisms also fit into the box he’s supposed to be and it works.
This also plays into the lessons our hero discovers and learns. Mostly through the very real human people he has in his life which has nothing to do with any powers. The lessons are good and worthy. Plus the people who teach him this are also quite memorable. I enjoy Billy and Freddy’s friendship and while their role is lesser, each of the siblings is fun. All in all Shazam is one of the better (more recent) movies in the superhero flicks. It’s way more fun compared to most DC movies too.
You can stream Shazam! with an HBO Max subscription (at publication)
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CONTENT: There’s some sci-fi style violence and frightening images that are gargoyle like. There’s lots of battles and fights between good and evil. People get thrown around in these battles and sustain injuries. A bit of “crude humor” crops up here and there, but mostly it’s the sci-fi violence/action that earns the rating. The film is PG-13.
Photos: DC Studios