The Fantastic 4 starring Jessica Alba (Sue Storm), Ioan Gruffudd (Reed Richards), Chris Evans (Johnny Storm), Michael Chiklis (Ben - The Thing), Julian McMahon (Dr. Doom) is an adaptation of the Stan Lee/Jack Kirby comic book from Marvel Comic. Long a fan favourite ranking with the likes of Justice League and X-Men, The Fantastic 4 is the perfect fodder for a CGI plot driven movie.
The movie is now available in the Fox Marvel Heroes box set with Fantastic 4 Silver Surfer, a 4 cartoon DVD titled World's Greatest Heroes, X-Men, X-Men 2, X The Last Stand, Elektra, Daredevil, and a disc with a digital Silver Surfer comic.
The Fantastic 4 is a slow paced movie but remarkably faithful to the characters of the original comic book. As with many first movies in a franchise this one suffers from the need to explain who everyone is, what they were like before they got their powers, how they got their powers, how they learned to use their powers and what they did with their powers once they understood them. Just once I would like to see a super hero movie that begins in medias res assuming that everyone who is going to see the movie is already aware of the super hero and their powers.
I still loved The Fantastic 4 despite the slow start.
This is an eye candy movie which was aimed squarely at fans of the Marvel Universe and in that respect succeeds admirably. While more mainstream viewers might feel that there is a B movie quality to the script and the direction the actors do a great job to convincingly portray the dysfunctional family that makes up the Fantastic 4.
While many red blooded male fans likely will adore the adorable Jessica Alba as Sue Storm the real standout performance in this movie is Michael Chiklis as Ben Grimm the fierce, short fused, indestructible curmudgeon who is Reed Richards best friend and ultimately the muscle behind the Fantastic 4 in much the same way as Reed Richards is the brain, Sue Storm the heart and Johnny Storm the mercurial motivator.
Fans of the comic book, like me, will undoubtedly enjoy settling in for a little over an hour and forty-five minutes to screen this one. Those who are not fans and/or don't really get it to begin with are likely not going to enjoy the obvious friction between the bratty Johnny and Thing nor are they likely to enjoy some of the other aspects of this unique group of superheroes.
What made The Fantastic 4 so original and popular was that they were ultimately heroes with feet of clay who still carried on while knowing that they were capable of being wrong and making mistakes.
This may not be great cinema but it is a great comic book brought to life.