Shazam! Fury of the Gods Reviews: Lightning Doesn't Strike Twice

The first Shazam! Fury of the Gods reviews are in — and it sounds like lightning hasn't struck twice for the Shazamily. DC and New Line Cinema's Shazam! sequel released its embargo on Wednesday night, and the first critic reactions seem to agree the follow-up to the 2019 movie is missing the magic of its predecessor. Fury of the Gods debuted on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes with a Tomatometer score of 68% — a drop from the first movie's certified fresh 90% — and a consensus that the new movie is "more unfocused and less satisfying" than the original. "Shazam! Fury of the Gods isn't the most unique or action-packed comic book movie out there. You certainly won't leave the theater a changed DC fan, but you will leave with a smile on your face. If you can look past the uncertainty of the Shazamily's future, Shazam! Fury of the Gods is a delightful ride and a worthy follow-up to the first film."

The Hollywood Reporter: "Like some children who aren't so cute anymore after they've grown up a little, this follow-up lacks much of the appeal of its predecessor. While the film provides the elaborate action set pieces, colorful villains and save-the-world plot mechanics expected of the comic book movie genre, some of the magic is missing ... the Shazam films are geared to a younger comic book movie audience, but this seems more like Saturday morning cartoon territory." 

IndieWire: "While Shazam! Fury of the Gods doesn't entirely recapture the giddy fun of the first film, its humor, sweetness, and delightfully human heroes remaining bright spots in a genre too often obsessed with the dark and the gritty."

Variety: "The origin story was the charm, but the sequel is hobbled by a less buoyant hero and bland villains ...  [Shazam!] had a breezy screw-loose charm that felt not so much superhuman as good old human. It somehow sidestepped the digitally tooled blockbuster cynicism, but Fury of the Gods falls right into it. The film isn't terrible, but it's busy, formulaic and rather joyless."

The Los Angeles Times: "One whiff of the Shazam! sequel Shazam! Fury of the Gods and you'll find that this overly jokey approach is well past its expiration date. The DC movie is exceedingly grating, labored and annoying, and that's in large part due to star Zachary Levi's utterly confounding performance as Shazam ... It may be a shoddily made Skittles ad masquerading as a superhero riff, but it's Levi's performance that sends it into the stratosphere of cringe. Here's hoping this is not only Shazam's last outing but the nail in the coffin of the smarmy superhero as well."

USA Today: "A fun, kid-friendly follow-up to director David F. Sandberg's 2019 charmer, the Shazam sequel ... piles on the mythos, monsters and magic, a smidge too heavily at times, but stays grounded, thanks to its earnestly goofy main man."

The Daily Beast: "On the basis of Shazam! Fury of the Gods, that [DC Universe] reboot can't come soon enough. A sequel whose goofiness extends not only to its lame humor but its convoluted and senseless plot, David F. Sandberg's film is something like the light-side equal to last fall's Black Adam—fitting, given that the antihero of that Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson vehicle is a classic Shazam villain. Messy and mirthless, it resounds as the death knell for this interconnected cinematic enterprise's current iteration."

Newsday: "Shazam! Fury of the Gods fairly panders to the under-13 set. But Levi still works his chatterbox charm, and the movie maintains an appealingly easy-breezy tone (aside from the occasional impaling)." 

TheWrap: "[2019's] Shazam! still stands out as something special: an emotional, character-driven film with good humor and an actual point to make that never let flashy spectacle get in the way of telling a wonderful, personal story. It would be nice to report that the sequel follows in that tradition. Instead, the best parts of this new movie are drowned out by pointless CGI monsters and tedious action sequences. What worked before still works now, it's just that now it's got a whole lot of bland blockbuster pabulum to compete with."

When Is Shazam! Fury of the Gods Coming Out?

Shazam! Fury of the Gods opens in theaters March 17th.

Shazam 2 Rotten Tomatoes Score

Shazam! Fury of the Gods currently has a 68% approval from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

Shazam! Fury of the Gods Cast

Shazam! Fury of the Gods stars returning cast members Zachary Levi (Thor: Ragnarok) as Shazam; Asher Angel (Andi Mack) as Billy Batson; Jack Dylan Grazer (It Chapter Two) as Freddy Freeman; Adam Brody (Promising Young Woman) as Super Hero Freddy; Ross Butler (Raya and the Last Dragon) as Super Hero Eugene; Meagan Good (Day Shift) as Super Hero Darla; D.J. Cotrona (G.I. Joe: Retaliation) as Super Hero Pedro; Grace Caroline Currey (Annabelle: Creation) as Mary Bromfield / Super Hero Mary; Faithe Herman (This Is Us) as Darla Dudley; Ian Chen (A Dog's Journey) as Eugene Choi; Jovan Armand (Second Chances) as Pedro Pena; Marta Milans (White Lines) as Rosa Vasquez; Cooper Andrews (The Walking Dead) as Victor Vasquez; with Djimon Hounsou (A Quiet Place Part II) as Wizard.

Joining the cast are Rachel Zegler (West Side Story), with Lucy Liu (Kung Fu Panda franchise) and Helen Mirren (F9: The Fast Saga).

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