Despite my gripes about modern movies, I can't resist the pull of a summer blockbuster. I suppose I could also validate this (if necessary) by saying that I need to keep up-to-date with my movie intake so that I can discuss the latest flicks with my students (you don't buy that either do you?!)
Back to the review....
Theoretically, one would think that it would be impossible to screw up a comic book movie adaptation, but let me cite Superman 3, The Hulk, Batman and Robin as examples of how flawed this theory proves to be. In other words, great special effects and the presence of a caped crusader does not a successful comic adaptation make.
I'm therefore happy to report that Fantastic Four does not belong in this category. Rather, I would place it alongside the likes of Batman Begins, X-Men 1&2, Superman 1&2 and Spider-Man 2 (which I haven't seen it, but have heard from everyone who has, that it's a stunner).
Fantastic Four succeeds in my opinion because the scriptwriters ensured that it is the characters that count, rather than the super-duper special effects. As the story unfolds, you are led into the minds and lives of the four unfortunates who have superpowers unwittingly thrust upon them (especially poor Ben who turns into The Thing) whether or not they like it. The reason the movie works is because you can relate to the four and might even end up caring about them (well, I did, even though the Human Torch is the least sympathetic by far).
Additionally, there is humour and action to boot and all in all, Fantastic Four is an highly entertaining bundle of a movie.
I therefore thoroughly recommend it and am happy to give it four Claudy's - one for each member of the team, although The Torch should get ½ a star for his obnoxious attitude!