I held off on watching James Wan's Aquaman for a long freakin time. Partially, it because of a mini-protest to the idea that the bulk of the movie going public is obsessed with cartoon superheroes.
I'll admit that we live in a Peter Pan culture that has been seriously transformed by both our proximity to nuclear waste materials and easy access to drugs. There is, however. a subculture of older, mature people who thirst for movies that contain more than a flake or two of substance, and I don't mean the cardboard flavored rice cakes of Wokerwood.
Does it make me in such a bad person because I prefer my cinematic enrichment free from political snideness? Does it make me into a bad movie goer to state that I read a shitload of comics when I was young, so that I could deal with more substantive stuff now?
It's a moot point because I broke down and went and watched the damned movie anyway. I did it only because I have been reading Aldous Huxley and wanted to see if there were any scenes in the movie that touched upon a higher order of things.
There was a lot of serious stuff in there. The theme for example. I have been saying for a long time that mankind will never recover from it's addiction to distraction until the split between this world and the other is healed. Hell, I got that from Sophocles not Superman, and it means restoring the corpus callosum to its proper function.
However, this movie depicts the reason for the split between the materialistic world of men and watery depths of the subconscious as being caused by the voracious greed of mankind. The real reason is the fact that the high priests of empiricism deny both the value of the subconscious and also its right to even exist.
There will be no war to reconcile the polarities. The problem will only resolved when the materialists discover that the water from wells of creative inspiration have run dry. Come to think of it, Hollywood's endless fascination with comic books, sequels, and feminist remakes might be telling us that the crops are burning up as we speak.
There is no middle because we have allowed the hardcore materialists to have our collective corpus callosum removed like it was just a rotten appendix. Disney should know this better than anyone.
This leads me to believe that this slipped in by accident.
This movie also perfectly illustrates what's wrong with Hollywood's addiction to CGI. In the not too distant future, the Actor's Guild will go the way of the Wallmart checker. Even the living characters of Aquaman looked cartoonish.
Given endless amounts of actors on demand, the best Hollywood can do is to kill them off like a hyper-speed version of Kill Bill. This makes the battle sequences look ridiculous. The most poignant war scene I've ever seen was a movie clip of a single German soldier being killed by a sniper. Compare the battle scenes in this movie to the single gunshot heard offscreen in Life is Wonderful. And yes I know that its like comparing apples and oranges, but then again its not.
The worst thing about the movie were the underwater scenes, especially the ones involving a lot of dialogue. They didn't look real. They showed the characters floating but no bubbles came out of their mouth when they talked.
The underwater setting was disconcerting at best. I've seen more compelling underwater scenes paddle boarding in my pool. When things returned to dry land it was a better movie and that's bad news for a movie about an underwater super hero.
The best thing about the movie was the decision to let Amber Heard play Mera as a redhead. I know that in the hypersensitive world of today, it would more acceptable of me to praise her acting and the strength and intelligence she brought to the role. But that would also be lying. She's playing a cartoon character for God's sake.
It was the combination of red hair, beautiful eyes, and the form fitting sea suit that she wore that gave her character power. It was hard to take your eyes off of her. If you wanted a movie that said more of the other stuff, you would need to make Mera's role more than than that of mentally, emotionally, morally superior sidekick to a cute but dumb as fuck superhero.
If you wanted a to make a movie more suited to the me-too mentality, why not Mera: Princess of the Sea? I'd have to believe that it would have been a lot better than this soggy and bloated piece of nonsense, but even that would become boring too.