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Aquaman

First appearing in DC Comics in 1941, ‘Aquaman’ has been a quiet comic-book achiever. Whilst not as widely known as Batman or Superman, Aquaman’s longevity points to garnering his own loyal comic book fans. After appearing in ‘Batman v Superman’ and ‘Justice League’, ‘Aquaman’ receives his first solo cinematic outing. It’s as spectacular as expected with the CGI working overtime to bring Aquaman’s water-filled world to fluid life.

Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa) is the son of a human and the Princess of Atlantis. Swimming the vast expanses of the underwater empire, Arthur gradually becomes a powerful warrior, named by the public as Aquaman, whose legacy is to become King of his world. When his half-brother Orm (Patrick Wilson) decides to destroy humanity by uniting the various kingdoms ruling the seven seas, Arthur is forced to face his legacy. Aided by close friend Mera (Amber Heard), Arthur puts all his might into battling a looming cataclysm threatening to tear everyone apart.

‘Aquaman’ is a fun, if often silly, comic book caper. Much different to the recent DC comics films, ‘Aquaman’ is far lighter in tone with an abundance of humour and lashings of thrills. Momoa is a perfect fit as the barrel-chested hero with his waspish ways mirroring the actor’s latent charisma. He is ably supported by Heard, Wilson and others who spout the dialogue with tongue firmly in cheek. James Wan directs with an eye for genuine comic-book flavour with each celluloid frame looking like a panel from the comic page.

Although its screenplay is overlong with an episodic feel, ‘Aquaman’ makes up for it by not taking things too seriously. Audiences see these films to be entertained by colourful spectacle which ‘Aquaman’ delivers. Occasionally the sights seem a little too gaudy but the pop-art design of the sets and the elaborate action sequences elevate the film above several recent similar work. It looks like it cost a fortune but every penny is evident on screen with the escapism ratio at a definite high.

Despite being quite ridiculous at times, ‘Aquaman’ is entertaining high-octane nonsense. This is easily the best of the recent spate of DC movies as it discards the morose musings of its forebears to create an enjoyable time. A sequel wouldn’t go amiss in a world that needs more optimistic and exciting viewing than sombre outings of the recent past.

Rating out of 10: 7

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