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Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
2 out of 5 stars
Time Out says
2 out of 5 stars
Coming across like the scatty younger sibling to the more serious, more mature ‘ X-Men’ films, 2005’s ‘Fantastic Four’ substituted corny comic banter and cheesy effects for solemnity, subtext and drama, and proved a sizeable hit with the prepubescent crowd. This numeral-less sequel aims for a similar demographic with a family-friendly, mankind-under-threat, globe-trotting plot that takes in our fair city (where the Eye’s saved from tumbling into the Thames) and an appearance by the Fantasticar that will, clearly, shift a few more toys. Gruffudd still looks faintly embarrassed at having to play the rubber-limbed, big-brained Mr Fantastic whose wedding to Invisible Woman Sue Storm (Alba) is interrupted by the all-CGI Silver Surfer, a cosmic visitor who rides the stars on his liquid metal board (man), and whose appearance presages various destructive anomalies around the world. But the Surfer’s arrival only heralds that of the planet-devouring Galactus, a god-like entity and one of the most feared villains in the Marvel Universe portrayed here by a, er, cloud. McMahon’s Dr Doom, meanwhile, returns to annoy the comic book faithful and there’s the ubiquitous, cringe-worthy cameo from Stan Lee, this time playing himself. Marginally more entertaining than before, and shorter too, although Story’s direction remains as drab and anonymous as ever. Kids will no doubt love it. For dads, there’s always Alba.