Review: Thunder Force

Starring Melisa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer, Thunder Force is an action / comedy set in a world where sociopaths develop superpowers after the planet was struck by cosmic rays in the early 1980’s. The film sees two childhood friends reunite in adulthood to fight crime after they take an experimental treatment to give them superpowers of their own.

Thunder Force wasn’t even on my radar of releases this year until it popped up on Netflix and while I’m not usually a fan of Melissa McCarthy’s style of comedy I thought I’d give it a bash after watching the trailer as it looked like the kind of thing I’d usually enjoy and to my surprise it wasn’t as bad as I expected.

I don’t think anyone could ever claim that Thunder Force is anything original, in fact it’s about as predictable a film as they come and it ticks off just about every superhero cliché there actually is but it’s still a decent little film if you’ve got a couple of hours spare. Both Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer play off each other quite well in the lead roles and there’s some decent bather between the two throughout.

I’ve seen a lot of negativity about this film and not to be contrary to popular opinion for the sake of it, I didn’t hate Thunder Force. It isn’t something that’s going to change the world by any means but it’s an OK film that doesn’t take itself too seriously and that isn’t always a bad thing. Over the last few years, in particular with the likes of Avengers: Endgame and Wonder Woman, we sometimes forget that superheroes and supervillains are an inherently silly concept.

Don’t get me wrong, despite everything I’ve said thus far I would by no means consider Thunder Force to a good film. Watchable yes, good absolutely not. My biggest issue with American comedies is I can never tell if they’re not funny or if I just don’t get the jokes. My favourite part of the entire film by far is Pom Klementieff’s turn as villain, Laser. I’m not sure if she’s overacting and having fun or if she just can’t act though. It’s quite a fine line to walk but either way but she’s a blast to watch and her comedic time is spot on.

Absolutely Thunder Force will find an audience, but I think it’s more my mum’s kind of film than mine. My biggest issue with the film is that it sets itself up nicely but fails to execute anything in a meaningful way. Good points and bad points aside, I’ll say that in conclusion, Thunder Force is a decent middle of the road film which is perfectly a serviceable watch however it had the potential to be something special.

by Edward Laing