Renowned scientist Dr. Michael Morbius has a brilliant idea. In order to cure a debilitating bloodborne illness, he will combine human DNA with that of a Costa Rican vampire bat.
How does it work? No clue. He authoritatively says “coagulants,” slaps a couple vials in a centrifuge, et voila!
Running time: 104 minutes. Rated PG-13 (intense sequences of violence, some frightening images and brief strong language). In theaters.
The issue is personal. Michael (Jared Leto) and his best friend Milo (Matt Smith) both have a lifelong mysterious disease that weakens their bodies and forces them to walk with two canes. Determined, he illegally experiments on himself.
Morbius is then shocked when the trial leaves him bat-like and fanged with a thirst for human blood.
Huh? That’s like if I melded my DNA with a hippo’s and was surprised that I became hungry, hungry.
The tired and gloomy new Marvel movie “Morbius,” which is made by Sony and not part of the massive Marvel Cinematic Universe, suffers from chronic obviousness. Of course, Dr. Morbius (Jared Leto) is gonna become Batboy. Of course, Milo (Matt Smith) is gonna want in on the action. Of course, the character I shan’t name is gonna accidentally wind up a vampire too. Director Daniel Espinosa’s film isn’t a disaster — just a bat-nap.
Comic book films are often formulaic, yes, but you need only look to last year’s “Spider-Man: No Way Home” to see that there are ample opportunities for the unexpected. Here, there are only opportunities for Leto to be a creep and wildly contort his body. That is the most predictable part of all.
“Morbius” is one of Marvel’s growing number of antihero films — a more palatable one than dumb-as-rocks “Venom,” at least — about an off-putting person who develops a destructive power that he can’t fully control and whom we don’t know how to feel about for two hours. The
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