Home Entertainment Thunder Force Review -Silly humour turns this superhero flick into more of a Thunder Farce

Thunder Force Review -Silly humour turns this superhero flick into more of a Thunder Farce

5 min read
10

I want to start this review off with an apology. I actually watched this movie a full two weeks ago, but am only getting around to it now, by a time when I’m sure many of you have already watched it. Perhaps though that sums up Thunder Force in the most perfect way possible, it’s instantly forgettable and not likely to leave you with much once its run time comes to an end.

In truth though, you really shouldn’t t expect too much from a movie considering the creative force behind it. Every single collaboration of director Ben Falcone and his wife Melissa McCarthy (Tammy, The Boss, Life of the Party and Superintelligence) have been terrible films devoid of much humour and descending into silly antics. A tragedy if you consider the comedic talent that is Melissa McCarthy.

To be fair though, if you go into this movie with the low bar this duo have already set, then you are going to likely enjoy Thunder Force. While I found it deeply flawed, it was easily the best Ben Falcone movie ever made. Thanks to a decent build-up of its characters that provides some added heart and a few genuinely funny moments, the film almost survives its many silly gags and ludicrous plot to provide some level of enjoyment, provided you don’t try and overthink it.   

Thunder Force tells the story of Lydia Berman (McCarthy) and Emily Stanton (Octavia Spencer) as two school friends who grow up in a world terrorized by supervillains (called Miscreants), as a strange anomaly has allowed only people with psychotic tendencies to get these powers. And while Spenser’s Emily – whose parents died at the hands of these villains – is a diligent academic determined to put an end to this injustice – McCarthy’s Lydia is just an aloof fun-loving person who wants to get by from day-to-day. Aka, pretty much every character she has played in these films by Falcone.

Th friendship eventually dissipates, and both go their separate ways until they rekindle their friendship later in life with Emily on the cusp of achieving a secret formula to superpowers, only for Lydia’s silly ways to allow her to get implanted with one of these superpowers, leaving Emily to experiment with the other formula she created. Neither have any idea what they are really getting themselves into and quickly find themselves up again a variety of supervillains.

I am a huge fan of superheroes and even more so when they can add some humour into the mix, but sadly it’s at this point that the film goes completely downhill. The film’s best moments are actually when it is building up its world and characters and the friendship between Emily and Lydia. There are some great moments along the way and even if it’s rather cliched, the chemistry between both actresses (and the actresses that play their younger selves) is really good. There are also some good laughs to be had during their transitional moments as they go through various stages of training and change to develop their superpowers.

When it comes to getting into some superhero action though the movie is a complete mess. Not only are the action scenes poorly executed, but the villains themselves are tragically underwritten, with stupid motives and there is just so much silliness on display (especially around Jason Bateman’s character The Crab) that you stop caring for any of them. In fact, the film appears like a set up for a few gags with much of this superhero story in between not adding anything decent into the mix.

The movie wants to be this big superhero epic, but then somehow confines into to a few small suburbs in Chicago without any good reason, with the villains never really coming across as particularly threatening, resort to mostly small store robberies than anything world-threatening. It honestly makes you wonder what the fuss is all about and why the world is so terrorized by them in the first place. Things are also just far too convenient for its superheroes and the twists can all be seen from a mile away

Sure, McCarthy and Spencer try hard, but when the material you have to work with is not very good in the first place there is only so much you can do. I feel for actors like Bateman, Bobby Cannavale, Pom Klementieff and Melissa Leo whose talents are all wasted in their roles. I can certainly see the appeal of a film like this but its good ideas got lost in some poor execution and poor writing. Perhaps Falcone would’ve been better served actually just pulling a superhero story directly out of the comics than trying to conjure one up for himself when he clearly doesn’t have an affinity for it.

In fact, the biggest superhero feat this film pulls off is convincing you it may actually be good in the first parts of the movie before frustrating falling apart at the end when it is too late to look for something else to watch.

As mentioned, though Falcone and McCarthy have been far worse and while this film is unlikely to be particularly memorable in your mind, it may prove enough of a distraction to give you the entertainment fix you need. Or leave you instantly regretting it and moving elsewhere instead. This might be the best movie Falcone has ever made, but that bar is sadly set so low that even if it goes over it, it still trips and falls. There is progress though and so who knows, if studios keep throwing money at his movies there is hope that eventually, they might finally be good. Maybe.

Last Updated: April 26, 2021

10 Comments

  1. Original Heretic

    April 26, 2021 at 08:44

    As me one mate said, “I was forced to sit through this with my kids.”

    Reply

  2. MaSeKind

    April 26, 2021 at 08:55

    Melissa McCarthy scares me. Too loud and she seems to enjoy fart jokes a lot. No matter which side the fart might come from. Probably good kids entertainment. Not much for adults to enjoy.

    I did however enjoy that Spy movie, whatever it was called. Although that was enough of her to last me for the next decade

    Reply

    • Mandalorian Jim

      April 26, 2021 at 10:26

      Spy was actually decent. The cop movie she did with Sandra Bullock was funny. However, this movie shouldn’t even be allowed to pass through a sewer…

      Reply

      • Insomnia is fun

        April 29, 2021 at 03:41

        Heat was funny, Melissa gelled well with Sandra.

        Reply

  3. Mandalorian Jim

    April 26, 2021 at 10:24

    It’s bad… it’s really bad. This is even worse than a lazy Adam Sandler netflix stinker… and to pull such a feat off is an amazing accomplishment in its own right.

    Reply

    • Insomnia is fun

      April 29, 2021 at 03:39

      Adam Sandler and Melissa McCarthy in Jack and Jill 2?

      Reply

  4. rollingmol

    May 3, 2021 at 10:55

    One of the few movies I couldnt even watch halfway… really bad… not funny, not entertaining, no action… I mean l what genre is it then… waste of time and bandwidth… I really really tried.

    Reply

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