“Black Adam” is the 12th film in the DC Cinematic Universe & is based on the comic book character of the same name. This film also serves as a spin-off to the 2019 film, “Shazam!”. The movie stars Dwayne Johnson as the titular character along with, Aldis Hodge, Noah Centino, Sarah Shahi, Marwin Kenzari, Quintessa Swindell & Pierce Brosnan. Viola Davis & Djimon Hounsou & Jennifer Holland return to their previous characters from other DC films, “Shazam!” & “The Suicide Squad”. DC & Johnson had announced in 2014 that he would be taking on the role of character however, it would 7 years before the film would begin production. After the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 & several rewrites to the scripts & reshoots kept pushing this film back until it’s eventual 2022 release.
In 2600 BC, the city of Kahndaq was ruled by the ruthless King Ahk-Ton. He forged The Crown of Sabbac, a powerful relic, to rule all. However, a young slave boy was given the powers of the Great Wizard, Shazam, and would become Kahndaq’s champion to rebel against the King. Both, the champion & King battled until only one, but it remained a mystery. In present day, Kahndaq is ruled by a gang of mercenaries who call themselves, Intergang. Adrianna Tomaz (Shahi), an expert archaeologist & wanted by the Intergang, locates the last resting place of Teth-Adam, the champion of Kahndaq. However, her & crew find the Crown of Sabbac instead. One of her crew is Ishmael Gregor (Kenzari), the leader of the Intergang. Ishamel has betrayed her & made find the Crown. As the Intergang subdue Tomaz & her brother, she speaks the ancient incantation that awakens Teth-Adam (Johnson) who attacks the Intergang. Adrianna & her brother escape with the Crown as Adam dismantles the Intergang. Ishmael escapes as well & proceeds to make Adrianna a high ranking wanted person. Adam continues to attack the Intergang in the city. Adam also befriends, Amon Tomaz, Adrianna teenage son. During the attack in Kahndaq, Amanda Waller (Davis) is alerted and sends the Justice Society to take down Adam. The Justice Society include Carter Hall, a.k.a. “Hawkman” (Hodge) and Kent Nelson, a.k.a. “Doctor Fate”. Alongside Carter & Kent are 2 newcomers. Maxine Hunkel, a.k.a. “Cyclone” (Swindell) and Albert Rothstein a.k.a. “Atom Smasher” (Centino). The Justice Society attempt to subdue Adam, but he fights back. During their struggle, Ishmael kidnaps Amon and steals the Crown. Adrianna begs Adam for his help, which he agrees. Together, Adam & The Society must put aside their differences and save Amon and the world from very powerful evil that bring about the end of mankind.
This movie had the makings to be something different for DC Cinematic Universe but unfortunately, it wasn’t. This was a massive disappointment. The action sequences & fight scene were great but the overall story & writing really boggled the film down. The main issue with “Black Adam” is the approach. Honestly, unless read the comic or played the video game, “Injustice: Gods Among Us” or even saw the DC animated films, you didn’t know who Black Adam was. Dwayne Johnson had been so passionate about this project for so long that by the time it had come out, the DC Cinematic Universe was in complete disarray. Rather than build the character up from within the Cinematic Universe, Johnson decided to come out gate swinging, and in my opinion, that ultimately hurt the film. Black Adam is merely a villain to Shazam and really didn’t need his own film coming out the gate but when you got Dwayne Johnson in the lead role, why not shoot for the moon.
Overall, this movie was a great theater experience but after you see once, it doesn’t have the same rewatch ability as other DC films, like “Man of Steel”, “Wonder Woman” or “The Suicide Squad”. It had some cool looking action sequences but just boring and generic plotline and some cheesy dialogue. After careful consideration, this movie was a major disappointment. DC is still continuing their Cinematic Universe with upcoming films such as, “Shazam! Wrath of the Gods”, “The Flash”, “Aquaman 2” & “Blue Bettle”. As of now, DC is under new management, as director James Gunn, took over the studio and has cancelled all plans for “Black Adam” sequel despite its low box office return as well as any plans regarding the established Cinematic Universe with a few exceptions to the movies mentioned earlier.