Shazam 2 - Fury of the Gods Review

When DCEU’s Shazamily meets The Breakfast Club

In terms of its plot, the movie can be described as the teens of Shazamily (or Marvel Family in the comics) on a journey of self-discovery versus the titans (the daughters of Atlas) who are on a mission to get revenge on the human race and recover their lost magical powers.

Shazam: Fury of the Gods was initially scheduled to release in cinemas nearly a year ago. However, since then, the fate of the DC Extended Universe, has undergone significant changes with James Gunn and Peter Safran taking over executive responsibilities.



DC/Warner Bros.

Shazam: Fury of the Gods remains a good example of hilarity in the DCEU. The second installment maintains the teenagers-to-superheroes’ transformation’s comedic aspect, while also incorporating the struggles of teenagers trying to find their place in the world all the while juggling the superhero responsibilities they’ve been thrust upon.

Fury of the Gods, directed by David F. Sandberg, is regrettably missing some of that heart it had in the first film. In this sequel, we witness the Shazamily utilizing their recently acquired powers to combat a group of three dangerous deities’ intent on taking over the human world. While the Greek mythology-inspired iconography introduced by the villains provides a vast and exciting array of possibilities, the film falters on some fundamental storytelling elements, resulting in the sequel feeling less impactful and dragging somewhere in the middle than that of the original.


DC/Warner Bros.

The part that I found that could have been the central driving force of the story was seriously lacking. Given the elements and direction of the story, I would have wanted to see more of young Billy Batson (Asher Angel) in the front wheel rather than his teenager in a grown man’s superhero body alter ego (Zachery Levi). Although that magical charm has already worn in the first film, I can’t help but give Zachary Levi a thumbs up in staying consistent to the character’s personality. Also, the writers, Henry Gayden and Chris Morgan did a great job teaming up Frederick “Freddy” Freeman (Jack Dylan Grazer) and the wizard Shazam (Djimon Hounsou) for a significant portion of the plot; their comedic banter is quite enjoyable. While Freddy Freeman receives a good amount of character development in the movie, the youngest sibling, Darla Dudley (Faithe Herman), and her superhero alter ego (Meagan Good) also stand out, infusing the film with their lively and charmingly innocent personalities. The rest of the family get reasonable character development that somehow helped the audience connect with the characters.

lucy liu dragon

DC/Warner Bros.

Being a fan of mythical beasts and lore myself, I had a lot of fun with the movie’s big evil creatures. I especially loved when the dragon finally revealed itself. The look of it reminded me of a typical dracolich, that adventurers would usually encounter in dungeons and dragons. The film does a wonderful job explaining how the realms between Earth and other magical locations are kept separate and why it was done so, which lends further hook to the film’s raison d’etre.

atlas daughters

DC/Warner Bros.

The struggles of the Marvel Family are made even more complicated with the arrival of the three daughters of the god Atlas–played by Helen Mirren, Lucy Liu, and Rachel Zegler–arrive, who are on a mission to take the powers of Shazam to restore their decaying world after being stuck there by the Wizard (Djmon Honsou). While the Daughters’ motivation could have been more compellingly conveyed, their screen presence compensates for this. Led by Hespera, Helen Mirren’s nearly flawless execution of her character’s role not only as the main villain but also as a confident, serious counterpart to the Shazamily’s antics is delightful. Her performance made me wish that Fury of the Gods had allocated more time to capitalize on Mirren’s acting to better communicate the Daughters’ personal investment in the conflict. We also have Kalypso (Lucy Liu) who seems to have less lines compared to Hespera, despite contributing to some of Fury of the Gods’ action sequences – including an opening scene that nods to the boardroom scene from the previous movie. However, Hespera dominates most of the discussions, leaving Kalypso feeling underdeveloped and limiting Liu’s character to nothing but fury at the end. Anthea (Rachel Zegler), the voice of reason, fares better and brings her composure and charisma to situations involving her more vengeance driven sisters.

Overall, Shazam! Fury of the Gods’s story didn’t captivate me the way the first film did but that still didn’t make me any less of a DC fan. Looking forward to how Shazam will make it’s way to Gunn and Safran’s version of DCEU.

I also recommend staying until all of the credits roll for a mid-credit scene and a post credits scene.

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