Spoiler Alert: If you are yet to watch the film, do not proceed.
Or do. #Whatever.
#Whatever is also how I would describe Aquaman. It’s bizarre, all of it. The lore, the suspiciously weird tech, laser shooting sharks, the army of lobsters and Aquabro himself. Even Nicole Kidman’s wig, for that matter.
But it works. All of it just freaking works.
Aquaman is not sufficiently self-aware but it goes bananas with the creative freedom afforded by Warner Bros.
The movie doesn’t take itself seriously. It spends 2 hours trying to one-up the previous scene.
Starting from a shirtless Jason Momoa and his smouldering gaze in a pirate submarine, to an aquatic version of the Thor-Hulk gladiator match between Arthur and his half-brother Orm, to a gold-plated Jason Momoa and his smouldering gaze on the top of a
fire crab Kraken, the movie keeps you engaged.
It might be exhausting, what with the extraordinary quests and the introduction of a new aquatic species before you get used to the last one, but you can’t deny being wowed the grandeur of it all.
And this is where the movie diversifies itself from the DCEU we know of.
Movies like Batman Vs Superman and Justice League spent so much effort building up for the big moments that they forgot that the audience had to sit through the rest of the film.
Aquaman is a step ahead in that matter. The movie of course has a serious undertone to it. Yes, I am talking about the end of the world and the apocalyptic theme that every superhero movie has.
But that does not cross over and affect the lead who is a jolly fella that likes chilled beers. He is pretty much forced to save the world and take back what’s rightfully his, but Arthur Curry doesn’t really give a shit about that.
He is basically everyone sitting in the audience thinking, this apocalyptic thing happens at least thrice a year. So why lose your shit over it?
And that’s what makes it so enjoyable.
Warner Bros., who have been heavily criticised for undercutting their directors’ visions for almost all the DCEU outings (bar Wonder Woman), let James Wan do his own thing.
Of course, the movie has its faults. The screenplay is often dull as is Jason Momoa’s monotonous expression. Even Amber Herd’s Mera is not as convincing as she should be.
But like Aquaman says:
There’s a job to be done…And these are the tools I have to get the job done. Get the fuck out of my way and let’s get on with it.
End of story. James Wan gets the job done. It’s a good origin story, better even than Wonder Woman, some might say. Now, it’s up to DCEU to build on it.
If you had told me 10 years ago that Aquaman would be the one to save the DCEU, I would have hit you with a Rohu. But here we are!