Blue Beetle full movie review: Infusing Perkiness into the Superhero Norm 2023

Blue Beetle full movie review: Infusing Perkiness into the Superhero Norm

There seemed to be an endless appetite for superhero stories for a good while. Even while some critics started to take a more critical position, audiences flocked to watch the beautifully constructed sagas that pitted goodness against evil. But over the past 12 months, this cynicism has progressively spread, with poor box office results showing that there is clearly a limit to how many masked heroes and moral warriors moviegoers are ready to accept.

Blue Beetle full movie review: Infusing Perkiness into the Superhero Norm

Black Adam, Shazam 2, Morbius, The Flash, and Ant Man 3 barely managed to match the total box office receipts of the most recent Spider-Man movie over the course of its full theatrical run. Even the most ardent superhero fans are beginning to drift away due to the overabundance of superhero-related media. DC has faced special difficulties as indicated by the termination of its Batgirl movie even before it was finished. Director James Gunn of the Guardians of the Galaxy fame has pushed a total reorientation as a result of this turbulent time. Gunn’s new world, the first episode of which is a highly anticipated Superman reboot, attempts to revive the superhero genre.

There are a few lingering movies in the midst of this change, the first one carrying a different kind of expectation. The weight of the unrealistically high expectations that pioneering ventures frequently carry rests on Blue Beetle, the first solo feature for a Latino superhero. Future industry executives will probably use its box office results as a benchmark, influencing attitudes both positively and adversely. But no single movie can save an entire cinematic universe while also demonstrating the commercial viability of a specific portrayal. This is particularly true for a movie like Blue Beetle, which was initially meant to be streamed and occasionally feels a little out of place on the splendor of the big screen.

Blue Beetle succeeds in being rather enjoyable, in contrast to other of DC’s more forgettable recent releases. Despite its comparatively low budget and cast, it is positioned as ideal late-summer entertainment and constitutes a tiny victory when compared to shows like Black Adam or The Flash. This accomplishment represents a little success for a business that desperately needs something good to happen.

The plot of the movie develops as a vaguely well-known genesis story with cutting-edge components that give it a contemporary spin. It concentrates on Jaime, who has just graduated from college and comes home with hopes for a bright future. Xolo Mariduea plays this character with charming flare. But the brutal truth of his Mexican-American family’s present hardships soon hits him. They are on the verge of losing their beloved, long-term home due to the approaching threat of gentrification. Kord Industries, a vast and destructive corporate juggernaut run by the insufferable Victoria Kord, played by Susan Sarandon in her most offensive role, is the villain responsible for this upheaval.

Blue Beetle full movie review: Infusing Perkiness into the Superhero Norm

As Jaime searches for work, he meets Jenny, Victoria’s more charitable niece, who is portrayed by Bruna Marquezine. What at first seems to be a work chance suddenly changes, drawing Jaime into a larger plan of things. Victoria’s unrelenting search for a powerful and magical scarab succeeds, but Jenny decides to steal it and gives Jaime the responsibility of keeping it secure since she is worried about the possible repercussions. Unsurprisingly, the scarab quickly breaks free of its constraints, leading to a scene that is best described as a blend of body horror in the Cronenberg tradition and energetic Nickelodeon-type action. When the scarab attaches to Jaime, he eventually turns into the powerful Blue Beetle.

It is inevitable that watching films of this type in the current environment frequently stimulates reflections about the cinematic history that came before them. Blue Beetle frequently seems to be the result of combining Spider-Man and Iron Man with Jeff Goldblum’s mutating machine from “The Fly.” In certain scenes, including one that overtly borrows from “Black Panther,” the film has a feeling of being a mashup of many different influences. Despite the grandiosity of some of the action scenes, notably poor visual effects mar other scenes. There is an overwhelming sensation of déjà vu as you witness the spectacle of enormous metallic beings slamming into one another.

The movie is at its best when it can establish a distinct personality, especially when it depicts the cultural quirks of the family. The numerous references aimed specifically at a Latino audience, such as nods to the Mexican superhero parody “El Chapulin Colorado” and various telenovelas, are skillfully integrated by writer Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer and director ngel Manuel Soto. These cultural elements are depicted with genuine warmth. Although other characters are given less attention due to the focus on the central family dynamics over the romantic subplots, Adriana Barraza, an Oscar contender, has a chance to stand out as a grandma with a legendary revolutionary history.

But the anticipated fun from Susan Sarandon’s portrayal of a bad guy in a power suit (who is briefly called “Cruella Kardashian”) is disappointingly meager. Despite Sarandon’s ornate appearance and willingness to embrace meme-worthy moments, the script generally chooses practical interactions over powerful blows. Even George Lopez, who was cast as an uncle who believes in conspiracies for comic relief, struggles to find funnier lines.

Blue Beetle full movie review: Infusing Perkiness into the Superhero Norm

Despite a year chock full with superhero goods, it’s still difficult to ignore the stress brought on by overexposure. Only “Across the Spider-Verse”‘s creative genius seems to have actually cut through the noise. Unfortunately, Blue Beetle sticks too closely to clichés, which leaves us wondering why the same old story keeps coming up in movies. Its contagious vivacity and underlying competency, though, are hard to ignore, acting as a little ray of hope in a superhero environment that is at the moment clouded in doubt.

On August 18, Blue Beetle will be released in theaters.

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