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Shazam! Fury of the Gods  (DVD)


Stars: Zachary Levi, Helen Mirren, Lucy Liu, Rachel Zegler, Jack Dylan Grazer, Djimon Hounsou, Grace Caroline Currey (formerly Grace Fulton), Faithe Herman, Asher Angel, Gal Gadot

Director: David F Sandberg

A galaxy of special effects partially offsets the handicap of dull heroes and only marginally more interesting adversaries in a sequel that offers us a combo of superheroes and Greek myth.

You may remember that, in the original Shazam!, the title character (Levi), one of the adult superhero egos of a group of misfit teenagers, snapped the magic staff of Atlas in half and threw aside the pieces. Now the two halves are on display at a museum, and the daughters of Atlas (Mirren, Liu, Zegler) have descended from their godly home determined to get them back.

After initial skirmishes between Mirren's goddesses and Levi's high fliers, it all gets messy at a monster-ridden finale, as the most warlike sister (Liu) unleashes ungodly fury on the city, walling it in under a globe, and riding a rather splendid dragon to destroy her enemies.

We know the dragon's in the offing, as it's part of a fable involving a tree of life that bears golden apples, whose seeds...well, let's just say that the apple bounces from Levi & Co back and forth to Liu rather like the snitch in a game of Quidditch.

The effects here are inventive and versatile and by and large entertainingly done. It's a pity the makers had to ditch a quite effective tragic ending in the making, but, well, franchise continuation and all that.

David Quinlan

USA 2023. UK Distributor: Warner Brothers. Colour by Company 3 .
125 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 12A.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 30 Apr 2023