Tuesday, January 27, 2015

New Fantastic Four Promises Interesting Movie About Characters I Don't Recognize

It sure seems like Fox's new Fantastic Four, which ignores the two previous FF go-rounds from 2005 and 2007 in favor of one of them thar reboots that are so popular lately, is an outgrowth more of the studio's desire to keep Marvel and Disney from snaking back the valuable merchandising and franchise rights than from any genuine creative need. The project is directed by Josh Trank, and stars a cast of young up-and-comers as the titular quartet: Miles Teller is Mr. Fantastic, Kate Mara is the Invisible Woman, Jamie Bell is the Thing, and Michael B. Jordan is the Human Torch.

Although they finished filming on this awhile ago, it's been mostly radio silence from Fox on the promotional front, which seems a bit odd for such a high-ticket item that's due for release in less than a year. A lot of folks (myself included) have interpreted this silence as an indication that the studio was sitting on a bomb and trying to figure out how best to disarm
it, but as today's trailer drop indicates, they've definitely got something visually distinct on their hands -- albeit one populated by characters that bear little to no resemblance to the ones generations of readers have enjoyed for the past fifty-plus years.

Honestly, I really hate being "that guy." The one who says the original versions should be the be-all, end-all until the end of time. I'm open to new angles and/or interpretations -- if there's need, and I really don't see one here. Trank (whose previous flick, the found footage superhero opus Chronicle, I genuinely dug) has created something that certainly looks sumptuous, and I'm not gonna lie, I'm intrigued, which I wasn't twenty-four hours ago. Nonetheless, it's still hard not to watch this and wonder why the property isn't back with Marvel, where we'd get something just as visually intriguing that's a whole lot truer to the not-broken original iteration. The movie doesn't hit 'till August, but check out the trailer below and you tell me.

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