Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

RotSS

Movie Details

Director : Tim Storey
Starring : Ioan Gruffudd (Mr. Fantastics), Jessica Alba (Invisible Woman), Chris Evans (The Human Torch), Michael Chiklis (The Thing), Julian McMahon (Victor Von Doom / Dr. Doom) with Laurence Fishburne (voice of The Silver Surfer).

Titled – ‘Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (F4:RotSS)‘ – this is the second movie in the Fantastic Four movie franchise brought to you from Marvel. This sequel to the first 2005 movie pits the Fantastic Four team against cosmic superpower the Silver Surfer.

The Plot

The main storyline plot for RotSS sees the impending doom of the world as we know it with the arrival of the Silver Surfer. The Surfer, acting as the herald of the cosmic entity Galactus (a.k.a Devourer of Worlds) has arrived at the planet Earth and has deemed that it is suitable for his master to consumes(eat)! And this happens right at the moments when Mr. fantastic and the Invisible Woman are about to tie the knot – for the 5th time apparently. The audience is then introduced to the Surfer and given a taste of what he can do when he easily man-handles the Torch. What follows is that the F4 team, with a request of the American Military does battle with the Surfer and manages to overcome him. However they soon learn that the Surfer himself is not the main threat and that his Master is already on his way.

* * * Beware major movie spoilers ahead * * *

Unfortunately as the impending doom is revealed, most ironically the old nemesis of the F4, i.e. Dr. Doom, manages to steal the Surfer’s board and thus claim the Surfers power for his own. What concludes is a battle royale between Dr. Doom and the Torch, who – utilizing all the F4 powers – defeats Dr. Doom and return the board to the Surfer. The grateful and very much touched Surfer then confronts his master and destroys him before he can consume the planet.

The Review

Once again the second Fantastic Four movie has failed to deliver to both movie goers and the fans alike.

First off, the movie is inconsistently paced – where long minutes in the beginning are spent on the relationship of Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Woman, followed by brief interludes spent on the initial clash with the Surfer. Then suddenly everything moves at whirlwind speed as we’re taken on continent-jumping trips as the F4 battles the Surfer. In my humble opinion – even the clash between the F4 and the Surfer is very brief and not exciting in the least.

Moreover Dr. Doom who suddenly awakens from his imprisonment from the first movie with the advent of the Surfer’s arrival on earth (nice timing) fails to contribute to the plot. Add into the mix is a very ‘jock’ Army general who make the idiotic decision of trusting Dr. Doom more than The F4 team, thereby allowing Dr. Doom to abscond with The Surfer’s board and obtain the powers of the Surfer for himself. Even the final battle between Dr. Doom and the super-hyped Human Torch is almost too brief and not satisfying in the least. Clearly Dr. Doom was brought back in the second movie to play the part of the ultimate ‘bad-guy’ while the main antagonist – the Silver Surfer, show a change of heart and goes on to save the planet.

Most regrettably is the fact that the movie has also butchered the myth of the Silver Surfer. To the fans of the Surfer this will not sit well at all and even the most astute of movie-goers who are not familiar with the Surfer can detect the inconsistencies in the movie movie character.

The visual effects are relatively simple and is kept to a believable level – except for dancing session where Mr. Fantastic looked to CGI-ied to me. Definitely no over-the-top CGI effects which surprisingly is a nice thing to behold after the the debacle that is Spiderman 3, thereby giving one of the few plus points to this movie. Also let us not forget that the beautiful Jessica Alba who is undoubtedly the main star attraction and thereby one of the movie’s main draw – to the guys at least.

In the end however, the shoddy melding of parts that the movie sums up with seems to me to highlight a very flakey movie script to begin with. Coupled with a director who once again has proven that he cannot deliver on all the promises The Fantastic Four franchise could offer – I have to say that Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer is a disappointment.

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