Aleasha Hintz — Staff Writer
Black Adam is an action movie presented at a light-speed pace and has proven to be a box office favorite.
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson plays the protagonist, Black Adam, in this latest addition to the DC Extended Universe. For the first time, Johnson’s role allows him to play more than just a funny, muscly character. I never forgot that I was watching The Rock throughout the film, but Johnson’s portrayal of Black Adam was impressive, and I applaud the casting.
Before being imprisoned by the gods who granted him his powers 5,000 years ago, Black Adam was Teth Adam of ancient Kahndaq. Kahndaq is vaguely Middle Eastern, and its people have been oppressed for thousands of years. Black Adam’s vengeful powers turn out to be just what the people of modern day Kahndaq are looking for to throw off their oppressors, but they also challenge the moral beliefs of modern-day superheroes and members of the Justice Society: Hawkman, Dr. Fate, Cyclone, and Atom Smasher.
The concerns of the Justice Society are not unfounded. Black Adam challenges the viewers’ expectations for superheroes, particularly ones like Superman. He is unpredictable, destructive, and not often concerned with things like “due process.”
But that is exactly what made Black Adam an exciting watch in the superhero genre. Rather than being a superhero of the modern age, restricted by organizations and politics and law and international balance, Black Adam operates on his own terms, erring more on the Batman side of the superhero spectrum.
What made Black Adam truly unique, however, was his unique perspective which juxtaposed that of the Justice Society. Black Adam believes in swift action and death sentences, he believes in giving power to the people, overthrowing oppressors, and the bond between mother and son.
The Justice Society is primarily concerned with international affairs and law. Therefore, the people of Kahndaq quickly named Black Adam the country’s champion, as he concerned himself much more with their plight under their oppressors than the Justice Society ever did.
Overall, the film is an exciting experience. The movie jumps quickly from scene to scene, offering just enough backstory to get the point across, but not enough to offer any substantial payoff for viewers.
The film’s breakneck speed comes at a detriment to the film. One could argue that it keeps viewers engaged, but it also leaves the plot feeling messy. Because of the quick development, the film is prone to plot holes, particularly ones that have to do with characters.
Some of the decisions that the characters made in the film were radically out of place. In one instance, Dr. Fate makes a reckless decision that completely assassinates his character, and puts the people in the film in jeopardy, just to save a “friend” with whom he barely exchanged a truly kind word throughout the film. This mistake was completely avoidable, but its presence did not unalterably change my perception of the movie.
Black Adam offers a glimpse of hope to superhero movie addicts and the average viewer, despite the bad reviews from critics. Black Adam shows immense promise for the future of DC and offers a palatable and unsophisticated weekend activity to moviegoers around the nation.