Aquaman (2018)

aquaman poster 2018 movie
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting : 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Unapologetic comic book movie

Sometimes crosses the goofy line especially with music cues

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Aquaman

Studio:  DC Entertainment

Genre(s):  Comic Book/Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):  November 26, 2018 (Premiere)/December 21, 2018 (US)

MPAA Rating:  PG-13

aquman classic costume jason moamoa

Call me “the guy who talks to fish” just one more time…I’m begging you…try it

Born of a human father (Temuera Morrison) and the Queen of Atlantis (Nicole Kidman), Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa) has been labeled Aquaman by the people of Earth.  Arthur is rightful heir to the Atlantis throne, but his half-brother Orm (Patrick Wilson) vows to be Ocean Master of all the kingdoms of the seas.  When Orm declares war on the surface, Aquaman teams with Mera (Amber Heard) to find the Triton of Atlan before it is too late!

Directed by James Wan (who also helped craft the story), Aquaman is a DC Comics action-adventure comic book fantasy.  Following Justice League in 2017, the film was released to relatively positive reviews and a strong box office opening.

I have to admit that I’ve always had a soft spot for Aquaman.  I always thought he was a more interesting character than DC Comics’ big guns like Batman, Wonder Woman, and Superman, but I also recognize his appeal has generally been rather limited.  Geoff Johns set out to make Aquaman a legitimate character in the DC Universe and Johns’ storytelling has been translated into the Aquaman film.

aquaman black manta costume

More Black Manta please!

The story goes full comic book.  This is both a good thing and a bad thing.  Often Marvel Comics movies often seem to say “we’re not a comic book movie…we’re an action-drama movie starring comic book characters”.  Aquaman doesn’t say that at all.  It is supervillains and superheroes in goofy garbs fighting.  This can be off-putting to some, but it also feels a bit unique in that it is just there to have fun.

Jason Momoa is a solid Aquaman.  The blonde and blue-eyed Aquaman probably wouldn’t work and the upgrade is welcomed.  Amber Heard is a good Mera who is presented as more of an equal than damsel in distress type of female lead.  Patrick Wilson gives Orm some heart, but Ocean Master does come off as a villain since he’s willing to sacrifice his people for his cause.  The movie’s scene stealer is Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Black Manta (a favorite of mine) and with a sequel guaranteed, he should be more important in a future installment.  The movie features roles by Willem Dafoe, Dolph Lungren, Randall Park, Temuera Morrison, and Nicole Kidman.

aquaman orm ocean master patrick wilson

I’ll give the filmmakers a plus on their attempt to make “Ocean Master” sound like a cool name

The movie is loaded with interesting visuals and gets past the difficulty of “people speaking underwater”.  The visuals are big and epic and scenes like Atlantis and the warring armies are visually interesting, but action scenes like the battle in Sicily have some impressive tracking shots with editing.

Aquaman’s success is a good thing for the DC Extended Universe.  Unfortunately, Marvel had such a head start on DC that everyone seems to have a perception on how these film should unfold, and DC has stumbled in that sense.  With Wonder Woman and Aquaman, DC shows that it can still be a powerhouse.  An Aquaman sequel is scheduled for release in 2022, and the DC Extended Universe continued in Shazam! in 2019.

Related Links:

Man of Steel (2013)

Batman v Superman:  Dawn of Justice (2016)

Suicide Squad (2016)

Wonder Woman (2017)

Justice League (2017)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

Leave A Response