(Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures)

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(“Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” trailer courtesy of DC)

Youngsters might label “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” as mid.

Old heads might describe “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” as adequate or average.

Half of America might complain that “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” is “woke” because it injects the politics of climate change.

Combine all those adjectives and unfortunately “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” is nothing special in a movie space oversaturated with comic book films.

God says that vengeance is His.

But no one must have told Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, “The Matrix Resurrections”) because he desperately wants retribution for the death of his father Jesse (Michael Beach) in “Aquaman.”

Black Manta is willing to do anything so that Aquaman/Arthur Curry (Jason Mamoa, “Fast X”) and his family will feel the pain that he and his family felt.

He is even willing to virtually make a deal with the devil to gain the strength necessary to take down the superhero and his underwater kingdom known as Atlantis.

Although Arthur remains an obsession to Black Mantis, Arthur is living his best life.

He has assumed the throne of Atlantis from his brother King Orm (Patrick Wilson, “The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It”), even though he has no interest in the duties that come along with royalty.

Arthur is married to his former sister-in-law.

The couple even has a baby together, who appears to share some of the same gifts that his superhero father has.

The kingdom of Atlantis is living in relative peace.

However, the issue of global warming or climate change is threatening the world’s very existence.

To make matters worse, because of the actions of the people from the surface world, residents of Atlantis have been plagued with illnesses that are putting many of them in grave danger.

While Arthur’s councilmembers want retribution for what the people of the surface world have done to Atlantis, Arthur warns against action because how can surface world people know what they are doing to Atlantis if they do not even know that the kingdom below the water exists?

Despite all the issues that global warming is causing Atlantis and the world around them, the biggest threat to Atlantis is Black Manta who is even more powerful thanks to blind luck and happenstance.

When two of his scientists are attacked by a monster from an unknown kingdom, Black Manta and other members of his staff do a little digging to see what lurks beyond the depths of the unknown sea.

What they find is a kingdom that has been frozen solid for centuries.

But because of global warming and the melting of the ice, the inhabitants of this land might soon resurrect and wreak havoc on those throughout the Earth.

While in the unknown land, Black Manta finds a trident that gives him evil powers and strengths that probably did not seem possible.

With that malevolent power, he now has the strength and capability to avenge his father’s death and destroy Aquaman and Atlantis once and for all.

However, the power that he has attained has so much greenhouse gas that it could threaten the entire planet, leading to the point of no return.

As a result of the threat posed by Black Manta, Arthur must make his own deal with the devil, freeing his brother from prison despite the danger he poses, so that he can have strength in numbers when Black Manta comes for his revenge.

The problem with “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” is there is nothing new that makes it stand out.

It has your good guys.

It has your bad guys.

It has a threat to the world.

And it has a solution to the problem, good, bad or ugly.

Yes, that scenario is the whole point and the gist of everything comic book related.

However, DC and Marvel both must change the game up a little because it is hard to stand out when there is so much of the same thing in the marketplace.

Thankfully, “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” contains magnificent and astounding visuals as one would expect.

And thankfully, the movie contains some “woke” politics, although many on the right might not like it that Hollywood has gotten political again with entertainment.

While many have attached negative connotations on the term “woke,” nothing but positivity can come from wokeness (i.e., racial equality, environmental justice, etc.).

DC Comics has a huge megaphone.

Therefore, why not use “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” to keep everyone conscious or woke about the peril the planet finds itself in because of climate change?

Many politicians have ulterior motives.

As a result, many of them cannot be trusted enough to tell the truth about climate change.

In fact, most real-world superheroes are not politicians and political pundits anyway.

And many politicians are not comical.

“Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom,” however, contains a few laugh out loud scenes.

Unfortunately, many superhero movies, except for the “Black Panther” franchise, contain less than stellar acting performances.

And “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” leaves a lot to be desired from a thespian perspective, even for a superhero movie.

Nevertheless, Mamoa is likable enough to make the movie watchable.

But it is still no better than mid, adequate, slightly above average and a little better than mediocre.

And with so many great movies playing in theaters over the holiday, “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” might find itself underwater in comparison to its Christmas competition.

 

REGAL RATINGS

FOUR CROWNS=EXCELLENT

THREE CROWNS=GOOD

TWO CROWNS=AVERAGE

ONE CROWN=POOR

Todd A. Smith
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