Director: Tim Story
Starring: Iaon Gruffudd, Chris Evans, Jessica
Alba, Michael Chiklis, Julian McMahon
RunTime: 1 hr 45 mins
Released By: 20th Century Fox
Day : 7 July 2005
outer space mission in the quest to unlocked the mystery of
human genetic codes had yield undesirable results to the DNA
of its astronauts: The leader, Dr. Reed Richards (Ioan Gruffudd)
now able to stretch and contort his body into any shape one
could ever imagine; Sue Storm (Jessica Alba), also Reed’s
ex-girlfriend, is able to render herself and the surrounding
objects invisible with a powerful force field; pilot Johnny
Storm (Chris Evans) could now engulf his body in flames and
take flight at will; and astronaut Ben Grimm (Michael Chiklis),
also Reed’s close pal, becomes an orange-colored, rock-like,
“Thing”, with Superhuman strength and is practically
they were now misfits in the society, they soon put their
nature-gifts into good use against the steely-eyed, iron-fisted
nemesis Dr. Victor Von Doom (Julian McMahon), protecting the
citizens of New York City against any of his vicious plans.
The well-loved Stan Lee and Jake Kirby's "Fantastic Four"
comics was published a year earlier than "Spider-man"
but the live-action version of the former emerged three years
later than the latter. As with any Marvel adaptations, the
production of "Fantastic Four" was plagued with
troubles and rumours way before. Issues ranging from the casting,
director and effects were greatly speculated and the huge
fanbase reacted with downright negative comments.
Tim Story was apparently not the first choice. Chris Columbus
of the Harry Potter series and Raja Gosnell of "Scooby-Doo"
were attached at some points. Tim Story who has done only
directing duties for "Barbershop" and last year
"Taxi" remake were thus given a huge task to fulfill.
Fortunately, he didn't really mess up the whole movie. Instead
of the Hollywood norm of mutilating nearly every form of adaptations,
Story and his screenwriter stayed close to the original source
and edited the whole movie at break-neck pace. It’s
as if Story is trying his very best to prohibit any room or
breathing space for mistakes.
main plot of course (for those comics fans out there please
endure this little paragraph) is pretty straight-forward.
A group of five consisting of scientists, pilots and a billionaire
industrialist are exposed to cosmic radiation which genetically
altered their DNA. The group unexpectedly discovered that
each of them have been blessed with superpowers way beyond
mentioned earlier, little changes have been made to the characters
or plot. Except certain facts such as Mr Fantastic was the
one who gave the foursome the nicknames rather than the human
torch and The Thing’s blind girlfriend Alicia Masters
was white in the comics. Well, these minor alterations can
be still deemed as forgivable.
Dr Reed Richards aka Mr Fantastic played by Ioan Gruffudd
(“King Arthur”) is still a talent in the science
field. Gruffudd who was pretty much ignored for his role did
a great job in portraying the humble and “indecisive
in love matters” leader of the foursome. The stunning
Jessica Alba who is the Invisible girl aka Sue Storm will
definitely have the male audience in awe of her excellent
figure. (There’s one humourous scene of her in near
“naked-form” to prove the fact). Johnny Storm,
the highly impulsive brother of Sue is portrayed by Chris
Evans (“Cellular”). Evans certainly stole most
of the scenes, stealing the attention of the female audience
and had audience in stitches with his constant tricks, squabbles
with “The Thing”. Surprisingly, the suit effect
was very much superior than the “Hulk” for Ben
Grimm. At least the facial expressions were more effectively
and genuinely carried out by Michael Chiklis who is a respected
stage actor. He did a tremendous job in portraying the tragic,
disfigured member despite the heavy, claustrophobic suit he
has to wear. Dr Doom (Julian McMahon) one of the most popular
villain of the Marvel universe is given the sort of familiar
“Norman Osborn” treatment. McMahon’s Doom
is a brilliant and vain scientist who gave way to the path
of evil. His portrayal is recommended for its distance, cold
and menacing scowl.
Despite the fact that technological advancements in special
effects have improved leaps and bounds over the years, Mr
Fantastic’s elasticity effects still look a tad cheesy
upon close-ups. But fortunately, the human torch’s fire
effects are remarkably impressive. The swirling and bursting
into the air in flames sequences will no doubt keep you to
the seats. If you marveled at “Spider-man” action
pieces, Story is going to pile you with the same amounts of
action to keep your adrenalin going. The great highway rescue
will show off the foursome’s potential powers right
in the middle of the movie to whet your appetite. With four
heroes and a villain who possessed impregnable armor and an
arsenal of high-tech weaponry, the showdown is apparently
going to keep you glued to the seats.
in all, “Fantastic Four” might not fare as good
as other Marvel’s live-actions such as “Spider-man”
and the “X-men” series in terms of plotting and
effects. But to be fair, Tim Story’s version of the
super family of four is a great piece of entertaining product.
Way better than the sleep-inducing “Elektra” or
the profound “Hulk”. Will we see Franklin Benjamin
Richards showing off his young mutant powers next? I can’t
the way, creator Stan Lee once again did a cameo. As a mailman
Review by Linus.T.
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