DC's 'Black Adam': Critics call Dwayne Johnson's superhero movie 'anti-entertaining' and 'repetitive'
While promoting 'Black Adam', actor Dwayne Johnson kept on saying that the hierarchy of power in the DC Universe is about to change and assured viewers that the upcoming project is going to take DCEU in a new and good direction. After a lot of wait, the first wave of reactions to 'Black Adam' has finally started pouring in and it looks like DCEU will need someone bigger than Johnson to save its sinking ship.
The official synopsis, per Warner Bros, reads, "In ancient Kahndaq, Teth Adam was bestowed the almighty powers of the gods. After using these powers for vengeance, he was imprisoned, becoming Black Adam. Nearly 5,000 years have passed and Black Adam has gone from man, to myth, to legend. Now released, his unique form of justice, born out of rage, is challenged by modern-day heroes who form the Justice Society: Hawkman, Dr. Fate, Atom Smasher and Cyclone."
Even though people believe that the the hierarchy of power in DCEU may be about to change with 'Black Adam', the reviews indicate that Warner Bros. would certainly have to do something substantial to keep viewers interested in the upcoming DC projects. The reviews for the aforementioned titled have been fairly mixed and critics ca't stop raving about Johnson's charismatic performance. However, the reactions also suggest that DCEU has nothing new to offer in the movie and is repetitive.
Joshua Yehl of IGN applauded Johnson's performance for making 'Black Adam' as "imposing as in the comics." But he criticised the movie for being packed with "undeveloped characters and an excessive number of repetitive action scenes, to the point where its half-baked debate on what it means to be a hero is lost in all the noise." Meanwhile, Rolling Stone film critic David Fear called the movie "generic, flavourless, and incoherent."
On the other hand, The Wrap's Alonso Duralde called the movie "anti-entertaining" and wrote, "Most disappointing of all, 'Black Adam' is one of the most visually confounding of the major-studio superhero sagas, between CG that’s assaultively unappealing and rapid-fire editing that sucks the exhilaration right out of every fight scene. The premise of a superhero whose idea of conflict is to throw his opponents as far as he can offers some subversive chuckles the first two or three times, but it gets old quickly, as does pretty much everything 'Black Adam' tosses at its audience."
In a slightly positive review, The Guardian's senior film critic, Peter Bradshaw, praised Johnson for his amazing performance and said, "Johnson’s massive bulk, planet-sized head and sly gift for deadpan humour all make him a great superhero. Where most men his age have a fold of fat across their gut, Johnson has one along the back of his skull."
Indie Wire's David Ehrlich panned the movie and wrote, "What happens when Hollywood’s most risk-averse movie star collides with Hollywood’s most risk-averse movie genre? Exactly what you’d expect. Only worse. The problem isn’t that Johnson can’t act — he definitely can! — the problem is that he doesn’t want to. He still wants the simple idolatry that a kid might have for their favorite athlete. He wants to be larger than life. But even the biggest of movie stars need to be a little smaller than that in order to give people something to watch, and not just look up to."
The aforementioned reactions don't seem to bring any good news for DCEU and fans might want to skip the movie after the "negative" word of mouth. However, viewers should see the movie and decide for themselves. While writing this piece, 'Black Adam' holds a 55% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
'Black Adam' is scheduled to release on October 21.