Fantastic Four (2015)
“Fantastic Four,” a contemporary re-imagining of Marvel’s original and longest-running superhero team, centers on four young outsiders who teleport to an alternate and dangerous universe, which alters their physical form in shocking ways. Their lives irrevocably upended, the team must learn to harness their daunting new abilities and work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy.
“Fantastic Four” is an origins story, a genesis account of how the famed four became, well, fantastic. They are all here: Reed Richards (Miles Teller), Johnny Storm (Michael B. Jordan), Sue Storm (Kate Mara) and Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell). We see a young Reed in the beginning of the film, working on his idea to teleport solid objects. One of his experiments fries the electric power in the garage, his house, and the entire neighborhood. But the experiment actually works. Leap ahead seven years to the present time, and various people show keen interest in his work, including Dr. Franklin Storm (Reg E. Cathey), who is also Johnny and Sue Storm’s father. Oh, and the government is interested as well.
The group all work together to successfully teleport a chimpanzee and return him to the base, and the team includes a young rebel named Victor Von Doom (Toby Kebbell). Unfortunately, when Reed gets the idea for the team to teleport themselves after they are successful with the chimp, the word “disaster” is written all over the idea. Disaster becomes imminent when Reed’s idea results in a terrible consequence for Victor, and also for Reed’s friend Ben, whom he brings along. However, the troubling event that occurs also makes way for a silver lining in the cloud. All four have received super powers, including Sue, with the ability to disappear, Reed’s ability to stretch fantastically (pun intended), Johnny’s power to burn and fly, and Ben’s super human strength, as he appears as a rock creature of sorts. Little does the team know that Victor’s fate will result in the team being challenged more than they ever thought possible — and the fate of the entire world will be on their shoulders. One thing they learn is that they can overcome if they fight together and not apart.
The special effects dazzle, and the performances are all solid. Unfortunately, the use of a profanity and harsh language, along with a bit over-the-top violence that includes some splattered blood, prevents us from awarding the movie our Dove Family Approved Seal.