Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007)
More Fun than Fantastic
To quote a friend of mine: "It's cloberrin' time." - Johnny Storm
The first "Fantastic 4" didn't really set me on fire, it was rock solid but didn't really stretch my imagination, basically it was all a little mundane when compared to all the other super hero movies which dominated the big screen at the time. And as such to say I wasn't expecting much from "Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer" was an understatement, in fact I was expecting an inferior sequel. Ironically I ended up enjoying the sequel, I still wouldn't say it was competing with other super heroes moves but it found its niche. That niche is fun because whilst we have plenty of serious super hero movies with major bad guys and plenty of doom "Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer" is lighter, more jokey delivering the simple humour of the 80s super hero movies which has been lacking in more recent offerings.
With Von Doom (Julian McMahon - Premonition) dealt with the Fantastic Four have something to look forward to, the wedding of Reed (Ioan Gruffudd - Titanic) and Susan (Jessica Alba - Honey), an event gaining major publicity. But their plans get interrupted when the Silver Surfer (Doug Jones) appears and the Fantastic Four are called into action to try and stop his wave of destruction whilst trying to figure out why he is reeking havoc across the globe. But that is not their only concern as Victor Von Doom resurfaces and whilst he may say he wants to help can the Four trust their nemesis.
So as you would expect "Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer" does deliver a typical storyline which sees are four heroes having to save the day, it's nothing less than what you expect and of course we have Silver Surfer's involvement as well as an old nemesis to deal with. But for all the glitz of the special effects which gives us the Silver Surfer it is a rather ordinary story of bad guys, the world in danger and are heroes saving the day. And as such the storyline is kind of dull and disappointing although the twist on an incident which means Johnny Storm can switch powers with the others does add a nice touch.
But I get a feeling that "Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer" was never about delivering an exciting storyline or trying to seduce by spectacular special effects, although the effects are special. Instead it feels like this sequel was all about the humour, such as the simple humour of Reed Richards and Susan Storm's wedding plans getting interrupted and Johnny teasing and angering the Thing time and again. And I could go on because for almost the entire first half it is about fun and amusement be it Mr. Fantastic dancing or The Thing belching. None of it is clever just simply amusing.
As such "Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer" does feel weaker than many other super hero movies because the attention is on fun rather than heroics. And when we do get the heroics as are heroes try to stop the Silver Surfer from his wave of destruction the action whilst entertaining is not exactly stunning. It's probably why so many people didn't really enjoy either of the "Fantastic 4" movies because they had a different focus to many other super hero movies.
What this all boils down to is that "Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer" is a fun movie, the jokiness of it works and makes a pleasant change from super hero movies which end up being about big special effects, bad guys and destruction. But like the first movie it's not exactly memorable, just a pleasant distraction which provides something different to other super hero movies.
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