Earth, Wind, and Fire (and a bendy guy)
Fantastic Four
Review Review by Ross Anthony

I'd read plenty of bad reviews for this film, but for some crazy reason, I still wanted to see it. Well, you know, sometimes those reviewers can be a little narrow. So, despite missing the press screening, I took time out to catch it at my local theatre.

Anyway, after the first 30 minutes, I was all ready to set the record straight, sing the praises of this film. It's light, brisk, fun, daring. It does "hero" in the way we used to think of superheroes. And in that first act, they learn their powers (which seems always to be the best part of these kind of films). To boot, our heroes already had a lot of juicy baggage bouncing around the group -- having known each other since college. Toss in super mutation, and hey, I'm having fun.

At the 30-45 minute mark, the four goes public with a huge automobile pile up on a long narrow bridge -- fire trucks crashing and everything. This scene is spectacular, a great pace, a warm heart, suspense, effects -- excellent entertainment. I'm wondering what those reviewers were thinking.

Then, well, the film never picks up from there, just sort of meanders within the inner circle of the bickering four and super bad guy, five. I tend not to appreciate super villains, so I was all the more disappointed that the film narrowed to focus on him. Save for TORCH taking a motocross bike excursion, the public is pretty much dropped from the picture. How unfortunate.

Still, the movie never stinks, just sinks into mediocrity at about its half point. So, we're going to give this one a B+, just barely.

Kudos to Chris Evans for keeping the film above simmer when all else was slipping. And to Michael Chiklis for giving this light film enough heart to choke up your average guy.


  • Fantastic Four. Copyright © 2005.
  • Starring Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis, Julian McMahon.
  • Directed by Tim Story.
  • Screenplay by Mark Michael France, Mark Frost.
  • Produced by Bernd Eichinger, Avi Arad, Ralph Winter at Marvel/20th Fox.

Grade..........................B+ (2.5/4)

Copyright © 1998-2016 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Check out his other sites too: Author*Illustrator*Speaker, Motobookothon 2009, M9, Write Triangle, TwT. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:10:49 PDT