The launch of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2008 drastically changed the conception of a superhero cinema that, on the other hand, was not at all new. Before the arrival of ‘Hombre de Hierro’ by Robert Downey Jr., the different franchises and sagas were made up of mostly stand-alone feature films that, progressively, they became unfinished episodes in a large-scale narrative presented as events.
With the popularization of multiverses in cinematic fiction, this trend seems to have increased. Except for honorable exceptions such as the recent ‘Spider-Man: Crossing the Multiverse’ and its predecessor, Dimensional Collapses they seem to have been reduced to the simple excuse to bring out as wide a collection of cards as possible with which to attract the fandom at the stroke of winks, cameos and fanservice without substance.
The problem of this, as we have been able to verify in productions such as ‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’is that between elbows and shovels of nostalgia, studios tend to overlook the fact that, for a feature film to work —and I’m not referring to its box office—, it must have great solidity in its true foundations: those that make up a careful narrative, a discursive intention and elaborate characters that channel the emotion as well as possible.
Flash’Surprisingly, he manages to transcend his multiversal adventure nature seasoned with his obligatory stellar appearances for unfold like a movie with each and every letter; and it does so in the form of an action-packed, time-travel buddy movie much more lucid and vibrant than one might expect. But, unfortunately, the duality of the two Barry Allen protagonists ends up revealing itself as a metaphor for the inconsistency of a project with more good intentions than results.
A Question Of Duality
Talking about ‘Flash’ means doing it inevitably about the contrasts and chiaroscuro present in practically each and every one of the elements that make it up. A lack of balance that, despite leaning towards the positive side of the balance, ultimately reveals what seems to be a creative process marked by chaos similar to the one unleashed by the titular hero in his personal quest to change the past.
The great success of the tape, and what makes it a film and not a simple advertising claim, lies in the treatment of its protagonist, in the management of both internal and external conflicts, and in the collision of both at the right time. The —or the— Ezra Miller’s Barry Allen not only captivates for his self-confidence and sense of humor, but also for an emotional charge with which it is very easy to connect and that carries the story in wings.
His dynamic with himself and, particularly, with his mother, played by Maribel Verdú who elevates all the scenes in which he participates, ends up leading to an unexpectedly emotional and heart-wrenching climax thanks to the universality of its concept and the care devoted to working on the mother-child relationship that moves history. Unfortunately, on the other side of the coin we find a much less polished repertoire of secondary characters and villains that are little less than cannon fodder. A good example of this are characters like Zod or Supergirl, tools at the service of the script simply functional but clearly underdeveloped compared to Michael Keaton’s Batman, who clearly benefits, without much fanfare, from his increased screen time, and who could have been easily replaced by an unknown Dark Knight.
Similarly, the narrative and the form of ‘Flash’ are also a matter of blacks and whites in regards to his treatment of comedy, the packaging of his action scenes and the passages more focused on conversation and plot development. The goofy sense of humor, almost typical of a stoner comedy fits wonderfully, set pieces They are conceived and shot with precision and the progression of the plot, after making the necessary concessions, does not present major bumps.
But these good feelings do not take long to dissipate due to a staging and a final finish that, surprise, are also tremendously unbalanced. The first go from witty to bland at the speed of lightand as far as the technical bill is concerned, from praiseworthy moments to passages crowned by the most plastic and artificial CGI of recent years in productions of these budgets —about the speed force and the digital characters is, directly, aberrational.
Here are some key points of the upcoming Flash movie:
- The film will be a loose adaptation of the Flashpoint comic book storyline, in which Barry Allen travels back in time to prevent his mother’s murder. However, his actions create a new timeline in which the events of the DC Extended Universe have been altered.
- The film will feature multiple versions of DC characters, including Michael Keaton as an alternate Batman, Ben Affleck as his DCEU Batman, and Ezra Miller as Barry Allen / The Flash.
- The film will also introduce the concept of the multiverse to the DCEU, which could have implications for future films and television shows.
- The Flash is scheduled to be released on June 23, 2023.
Here are some additional details about the film:
- Andy Muschietti is directing the film from a screenplay by Christina Hodson.
- The film will also feature Sasha Calle as Supergirl, Kiersey Clemons as Iris West, Maribel Verdú as Nora Allen, and Ron Livingston as Henry Allen.
- The film is expected to be a critical and commercial success, and it could help to revitalize the DCEU.
The Reboot Not So Reboot
However, everything exposed so far is overshadowed by the elephant in the room that, inevitably, we have to talk about without going into spoilers: the condition of ‘Flash’ of alleged turning point that would open the door to the reboot of the DC Universe captained by James Gunn and Peter Safran. A perhaps unfounded idea that has been reduced to the simply anecdotal.
More than as a necessary addition for the correct development of the story, the multiversal turn ends up falling into what the competition has already offered: an inconsequential fanserice that manages to diminish the capacity for impact and the dramatic potential of the third act and that it could greatly disappoint all those who wish to see that full stop in the DCU before the start of ‘Gods and Monsters’.
‘Flash’, expectations and marketing aside, has ended up being a light summer blockbuster, hilarious and with a heart of considerable size that promised to mark a before and after, but it is much easier to forget than expected. Of course, the two and a half hours of entertainment, however ephemeral they may be, are very welcome in these times of bland bombast and non-existent endings.
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