6 Thoughts on Morbius (Review)
After two years of delays, the Morbius movie has finally set upon us like a hungry vampire. And those of you, like me, who watch most superhero movies, I went to the theater and sat through the whole dumb thing. It helps that I still do a movie review podcast for my day job. Otherwise, Morbius definitely would have been one to skip.
Movie Rating: 3/10 – Bad
I often say that I find the story of Sony’s Spider-Man-adjacent movies more interesting than the actual movies. That this film studio is clinging so desperately to all these Spider-Man supporting characters, convinced that they can find their own success against all odds. It’s ridiculous and funny. And that they keep churning out crap is even funnier. Morbius never should have been made. But here we are.
Join me after the jump for my thoughts and full review of Morbius. Expect FULL SPOILERS for the movie.
6. It stunk
I tried to go into Morbius with an open mind because everyone and their brother was crapping on the movie. But I never had high hopes for this film. None of the trailers looked good, and I’ve always thought it was a dumb idea. The actual movie turned out to be a brief, cliche-filled bit of nothingness, peppered with a bunch of silly ideas. I’ll be pointing out a lot of those silly ideas throughout this list, because they are quite silly.
The movie as a whole just does not have much to offer. To a degree, I can’t even say that the movie is fine. It’s not particularly enjoyable, it doesn’t have any real standout performances or stories or character arcs. The super-powered vampire business isn’t particularly interesting, and is usually just bathed in darkness. The movie doesn’t do anything with the idea of Morbius being an artificial vampire, other than a few head nods. And then the villain is just a dude with the same powers as the hero, which has been done a million times before and needs to stop.
Morbius is a brief, poorly developed attempt to make hay out of a nothing character. It doesn’t have anything interesting to say or add to the superhero movie genre. It is not worth anybody’s time or money, even fans of superhero films.
5. So he resigns himself to being a killer, right?
The end of the movie is pretty weird (in more ways than one, but we’ll get to the Bat Hadouken later). There is a specific scene where Morbius implies that he’s going to kill both himself and Milo because neither can be allowed to live and become a blood-sucking vampire. And then he goes through with the plan to kill Milo…but doesn’t kill himself. And the movie never addresses this change of heart. The movie very clearly explains that the synthetic blood isn’t going to work anymore and he’s going to become reliant on drinking real blood. So if Morbius is still alive at the end of the film…that means he’s completely thrown out all of the moral dilemma he had throughout the film and just accepts that he’s going to suck the blood of humans…right? He accepts that he’s going to become a monster. There’s no other explanation. Which, again, violates the character’s entire motivation/story arc! What the heck?!
4. Everyone is so poorly developed
One thing I will grant the movie, with the exception of the issue I just mentioned, is that Michael Morbius is an OK character. He’s got some interesting flaws, some strong personality quirks, and his journey is good enough. It’s just that the movie around him, especially the supporting characters, really stink. The love interest is a nothing character. They had zero chemistry, and she clearly only existed because female love interests are expected in these types of movies. She’s like Christine in the Doctor Strange movie, but worse.
The FBI agents clearly had their roles cut down. The father figure was cut down to little fanfare. And a lot of weird choices were made about the villain.
Why did the villain have two names? It’s not even a good joke, that Kid Morbius just renames all of his bunkmates “Milo”. It’s not a clever or fun nickname given to Lucian for any special reason. His jerk of a bunkmate just decides he’s not going to use his actual name when addressing him. Isn’t Lucian going through enough? Does he really need his new residential facility to take away his name, too? Why not just call him Lucian throughout the film? Why even come up with the second name? It doesn’t add anything to the character or the movie.
At least Matt Smith seemed to be having a good time playing the villain. At least he managed to provide some fun personality and energy to the role, and to the movie as a whole.
3. Mercenary lives don’t matter
Milo hired a bunch of people to guard/sail the cargo ship into international waters so that Morbius could conduct his experiments. And then Morbius kills them all and nobody cares. There’s a scene where the FBI investigators specifically point out that their lives don’t matter, but the nurse that was killed had a family. Do those mercenaries not have families? Do they not have people who care about them? Was Morbius allowed to kill them because they carry guns and one of them was mean to Martine?
Morbius is the one conducting experiments so illegal that they need to be conducted in international waters. He and Milo are the ones hiring armed guards for the expedition. Why is it seemingly morally OK that Morbius kills those men in hot, vicious blood? They didn’t deserve any of that nonsense.
2. Bats don’t work like that
Vampire bats are not flying piranhas. Heck, real piranhas do not act like movie piranhas. But that’s beside the point. This movie treats vampire bats like the worst sort of Hollywood stereotype/boogeyman. Vampire bats are tiny little things that cling to cows and bite them a little bit. They’re not tiny buzzsaws that freak out like a zombie horde at a slight drop of blood.
At one point, Morbius steps into a big glass enclosure of wild bats, and he says they would tear a normal person to ribbons. But since he has a connection to them, they don’t hurt him. That’s also bullshit. But it sounds scary, right?
To say nothing of the ending, wherein Morbius can summons bats just because, and then he can bring his hands together like a Kamehameha and launch a beam of bats at Milo. Not even Batman has figured that one out.
Also, if Morbius develops the powers of bats, why can he do short-range teleportation with a puff of smoke? And why can he glide on wind currents? Bats clearly have wings. We know all about the science of flapping wings to fly.
1. Just let it end
I fear that Sony is full steam ahead on whatever stupid plans they have in store this time around. We were spared the Aunt May or the Silver Sable/Black Cat movie from years passed because of Sony failure. But the success of Spider-Man: No Way Home surely has them as excited as ever for their own Spider-Man universe. It’s probably too late to stop the Kraven the Hunter movie, but ugh. How can anyone look forward to that film? Is it too late to stop the Madame Webb movie? Somebody stop it! Somebody stop all of it!
May we never see what becomes of Morbius meeting the Vulture.