“Aquaman” is predictable, does not exceed expectations


Photo Courtesy of Creative Commons

Jason Momoa stars as Aquaman, the half-human protector of the deep. Aquaman must reunite the underwater kingdoms in order to prevent his half-brother, Orm, from invading the surface world.

By Brandon Li, Copy Editor

A legend turned into film? Check. Discovering the lost world of Atlantis? Check. Nice battle scenes and sarcastic humor? Check. And a guy who looks a lot like Steven Adams? Check.

The story of the legendary protector of the deep hit theaters Dec. 21. “Aquaman” documents the journey of the half-human superhero Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and his alter ego, Arthur Curry, as he attempts to reunite the nations of the underwater kingdoms against his half-brother, Orm (Patrick Wilson). Along the way, Aquaman teams up with Mera (Amber Heard), daughter of King Nereus (Dolph Lundgren), and the pair must recover the lost Trident of Atlan, which will restore order and bring peace.

In the beginning of the film, it is revealed that Aquaman is the lost long son of Queen Atlanna (Nicole Kidman), who escaped Atlantis and was taken in by Thomas Curry (Temuera Morrison), a lighthouse keeper. After Atlanna was executed for giving birth to a half-breed, Aquaman denounces Atlantis and lives his life on the surface.

Throughout the film, Aquaman’s fearless nature and indifference to his undeniable heritage are tested, as he is tasked with uniting the seven kingdoms of the ocean in order to combat Orm’s commitment to a full-scale surface invasion. Aquaman must redefine himself as the rightful heir to the throne, which is why he sets out to recover the trident of Atlantis’s first king.

Within the two hour and 23 minute runtime, the film contains numerous fight scenes, which is great for action film viewers. However, the film is plagued with tacky dialogue and cliché romance, hurting its overall perception.

Even though the film visualizes the ancient mystery of Atlantis, it fails to live up to its somewhat high expectations. The film follows another DC Comics production: “Justice League.” With “Justice League” receiving mostly poor reviews, critics hoped for “Aquaman” to surpass its predecessor, just like “Wonder Woman.” However, “Aquaman” continues to add to DC Comics’ failed collection of films due to its cheesy dialogue and lack of sufficient character development.

Furthermore, the film seemed to be more predictable than usual. While many can predict that Aquaman will prevail as the ultimate protector of the deep, the conclusions to the multiple storylines, in this case three, become more apparent as the film progresses, which ruins the film for audiences who are more analytical.

An aspect that seems to entice fans is the inclusion of corny humor. Although some may view it as a distraction to the film’s plot line, the humor does assist in making the film worthwhile for younger audiences.

While the film suffers to be advertised as a classic superhero film, the film’s greatest facet is the chemistry between Momoa and Heard. Since majority of the film details Aquaman and Mera’s journey, audiences get to enjoy the cheesy romance and dialogue between the two, but some may think the two’s interactions are a bit forced.

After the release of a forgetful “Justice League,” some hoped that the spawned sequels, specifically “Wonder Woman” and “Aquaman,” would help repair DC Comics’ image. While the former excelled at doing so, the latter does not quite seem to match. Those who enjoy a decent superhero film with subtle humor should appreciate the film, while those who are expecting more will be unfortunately displeased with the end result.