Published September 3, 2021


Film info

  • Title Shazam!
  • Director David F. Sandberg
  • Year 2019
  • Run time 2hrs 12m
  • Genres Action, Comedy, Fantasy
  • Tagline Just say the word

We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson's case, by shouting out one word - Shazam! - this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult Super Hero Shazam, courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart - inside a ripped, godlike body - Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! But he'll need to master these powers quickly in order to fight the deadly forces of evil controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana.

Live blog

Time Comment
1:26 Magic-isn’t-real ball.
6:37 This is a pretty dark start to what seemed to be a light-hearted movie.
18:48 First time it’s actually seemed to be in the same universe.
23:43 Ooh, he’s gone Monsters Inc with a door in his room.
28:22 Everyone picks flight because travelling is such a ballache.
35:12 “Lay your hands on my staff.” “Gross.”
37:24 I’m not sure the white cape does work, really.
43:23 “He’s like a little miniature manager.”
49:31 I’m glad he can switch, I didn’t want the foster parents to be sad.
59:44 A superhero on social media is an interesting concept.
1:07:24 Name guessing is a really rubbish super power.
1:18:37 Can’t decide if I respect or am annoyed by the Big piano reference.
1:28:32 I like just yelling Supervillain!
1:48:17 Selfie in front of the crashed statue would also be cool, though.
1:50:13 A little bit of bonus Batman v Superman there.
1:58:38 Haha, crazy santa on the news.


Generally speaking, this is actually an okay movie - there are some interesting themes in there, and it’s a different take on the normal superhero, secret identity, saving the world stuff. But it does have problems. The biggest is clearly the tone - what film is it trying to be? It lulls you into thinking it’s a kids movie but then has someone thrown out of a skyscraper window and a monster bite someone’s head off. Then there’s some larking about and school bullying shenanigans and back to kid’s movie, and then they start swearing. It’s jarring and not in a good way.

There are also some issues around the Shazam character just not being that endearing or funny - Billy seems like a great kid but in the alter ego, it loses quite a lot. And finally (probably not finally, but enough for now), the film seems to riff off so many bloody things, it’s less of an homage and more of an embarrassment. Overall though, an entertaining movie and one of the better DC offerings.

Rating: 3 / 5

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