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Movie Review

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer a.k.a. Fantastic Four 2

MPAA Rating: PG for sequences of action violence, some mild language and innuendo

Reviewed by: John DeYoung

Better than Average
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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Teens, Adults
Action, Adventure, Comedy, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Sequel, Based on a Book, Superhero
1 hr. 42. min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
June 15, 2007 (wide)
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
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Copyright, 20th Century Fox

Superhero of the Bible…

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Featuring: Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis, Julian McMahon, Kerry Washington, Andre Braugher, Gonzalo Menendez, Laurence Fishburne
Director: Tim Story
Producer: Michael Barnathan, Chris Columbus, Kevin Feige
Distributor: 20th Century Fox

Reviews of prequel to this move: Fantastic Four (2005)


Marvel Comic’s first family is back. Ben Grimm, Reed Richards, Sue and Johnny Storm, also known as The Thing (“The Shield’s” Michael Chiklis), Mister Fantastic (Ioan Gruffud of “Amazing Grace”), The Invisible Woman (“Dark Angel”’s Jessica Alba) and The Human Torch (Chris Evans) are back battling bad guys as the Fantastic Four in “Fantastic Four: Rise of The Silver Surfer.”

Reed and Sue are trying to tie the knot, but not before a disaster of epic proportions threatens planet Earth. Enter a shiny silver being that soars through the sky on a surf board. Reed labels him “The Silver Surfer.” Surfer is a herald to one of the most powerful entities that has crossed the galaxy known as Galactus. Each time these two come to a planet, that planet ends up being toast. It’s up to the FF to stop the Surfer and his boss from making planet Earth their next target.

Joining in the mayhem is the team’s number one nemesis, Victor von Doom, but to his enemies, he is Dr. Doom (“Nip/Tuck”’s Julian McMahon). It certainly does appear the Fantastic Four has got their hands full.

There are a few problems with this movie. For one thing, and it happens in a lot in comic book-based movies, there was an overkill of campiness and comic relief, especially in the start of the film. Even the serious-minded Reed Richards (Gruffud) came across as a joke in a lot of scenes, taking away the essence of his comic book counterpart. I am all for comic relief and one liners, but the only person that should shoot those off is The Thing (Chiklis) and occasionally Torch (Evans), which they did… too much. Keep in mind this is not the fault of the actors. This is the fault of the writers and the director who are supposed to get a good grasp on how these characters should come across. Boy, did they miss the target.

As for the new kid on the block, the Silver Surfer, they did a marvelous job capturing his characterization. What made him effective was incorporating Lawrence Fishburne’s voice, which is exactly how I would hear the surfer in reading the comics. There are talks of a Silver Surfer movie. If they go in the direction of this portrayal, they definitely would hit his character right on target.

Another thing I felt, and I didn’t think it was possible, this superhero movie was too comic-bookish. Compared to another Marvel Comic’s superhero team that is popular on the big screen, The Fantastic Four almost seem like life-like cartoon characters. I just felt that there wasn’t much realism or an element of believability. I realize that this was a comic book-based movie, but I just felt that there was a lack of that something that makes the characters human beings.

What really rubbed me wrong, and you can call it my Christian radar going off, was that there was a scene where a news announcer was reporting all these terrible things happening on the planet, and he says that some people thought it was the hand of God. Now, I’m going to get on my soapbox here, but why do so many people feel that if something bad is happening that they blame God for it? I don’t know. If it were me, and I knew the Earth was on the brink of destruction, I wouldn’t be blaming God. I would be getting on my knees and asking for His divine help. The other thing that I thought was a little troubling was that this movie had a PG-rating. Most PG-rated movies do not have a lot of vulgarity, but this film had quite a bit of the A-word. I think they should have put it in the PG-13 category, like the first one.

Now after hearing all my negative comments, you might think I didn’t care much for the movie all in all; it was a fair to midland flick. It had spectacular effects, and the movie’s interpretation of Galactus was so-so, plus the story of how the FF met the Surfer was close to the comic story.

Was it as good as the first FF? I would have to say no. In the first installment, I felt some emotional ties to the characters. This film was an in your face, all-out, action movie. You don’t get time to sink in each scene before you are blasted with action. It didn’t even provide a proper origin of the Surfer, just a Reader’s Digest version. If it weren’t for the effects looking better on the big screen, I would recommend waiting for the DVD to come out. On a grading scale, I give “Fantastic Four: Rise of The Silver Surfer” a “C.”

Violence: Heavy / Profanity: Moderate / Sex/Nudity: None

Viewer Comments
Comments below:
Positive—I went and saw this movie last night with some friends from church. We were expecting it to be better than the first film which came about too slow and kind of boring. The Silver Surfer was more action packed and entertaining that the first, but there were some concerns of mine regarding the movie. First off, I didn’t actually see the rating for the film, but I was told it was rated PG. If this is true, it shows what the movie rating industry will do to make a movie attractable to the American eye.

This film should have been rated PG-13. Because of the action sequences and some sexually suggestive conversations, this should have received a higher rating. There were a few curse words used in the film, but by PG permitance, they kept the words under the allowed amount for a PG film. So parents take caution with young children.

Overall, I enjoyed the movie, but the ending was unexplained and made no sense as to why and how it was able to end the way it did. I apologize for being vague about the end, I just don’t want to spoil it for anyone, but you would understand what I mean if you see it. God bless you.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4
—Zach, age 26
Positive—I am a lifelong Silver Surfer fan and was thrilled to see this movie coming out, so I saw it with my wife on opening night. We did not like the bachelor party scene at the beginning and the movie could have done without it easily. That aside, they did a wonderful job with the Silver Surfer and this story. The effects were great. Many biblical themes. The Surfer pledged his life to a god-like being who is come to destroy the Earth. This has parallels to the coming tribulation, in fact in the movie they describe world wide anomalies taking place at the same time.

The surfer is a herald for these events and the ultimate destruction of the planet. Silver in the bible denotes grace. The Surfer gave his life to this god-like being to save his planet and the one he loves. The graphic illustration of a coming world destruction is amazing. Dr. Doom could be a great anti-christ type character.

The Fantastic 4 could represent the attempts of humans to thwart this coming destruction foretold by John in Revelation. It seems a theme of movies is developing where man can overcome these calamities—surely this is Satan’s education program. However, you can disregard these as an educated biblical follower of Jesus.

The Bible talks about being reborn and becoming a new creation. Jesus is described in Revelation as with feet as burnished bronze. Silver Surfer causes me to ponder grace and becoming a new creation in Christ. Lots of Revelation and apocalyptic type biblical themes to draw from.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 5
—Tony Ellsworth, age 38
Positive—I just finished watching this film with my daughter. Overall, it was very entertaining. We both enjoyed it quite a bit. There was humor, action, and great special effects. To top it off, the film has a good message. As far as most modern Hollywood movies goes this one is pretty family friendly too. It is rated PG so caution should be used for younger kids. Profanity was mild. In fact, I can only remember the a-word (think Donkey) being used on a couple of occasions.

You will find your standard sci-fi violence with fighting scenes, but death was minimal. One character is shown being killed by a blast that turns him to ash. May be shocking for younger kids. The special effects were well done and the story had a good message. On a moral level, the movie presented several scenarios pertaining to teamwork, putting others before ourselves, and ultimately making the choice to do good or evil. No direct religious overtones or mention of God but one could equate this struggle to the Bible.

There are some sexual themes between characters in the film. You will see some close dancing in a club, some character flirting, and some innuendo but nothing objectionable or really cause for concern. Of course, all people have their own standards so you will have to decide for yourselves. Keep in mind that the movie is PG. However, I think the creators did a great job to keep the film family friendly. In this day and age it’s rare to find a PG film anymore. If you like comic book films and you enjoy action I say give the Fantastic 4 a try.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4
—Dave, age 39
Positive—This isn’t like a great movie, but it is surely far from bad, in my opinion a great improvement from its predecessor. The movie itself I describe as a pure escapism film, but nothing truly offensive in it.

The Movie surely shows that one has a choice in the face of evil in this case the Silver Surfer feeling there is no escape from Galactus, and the thing is Silver Surfer is a very interesting character when you understand his story. Family, Friends, People, Objectives, all these things the movie surely addresses but in a funny way. there is slight nudity but not really one part where after Johnny touches the Surfer it messes with his Molecules so he switches powers with susan which she turns to fire and burns her clothes away but they don’t really show anything.

This is a good family film and if you just like comic movies in general check this one out and surely you wont find anything morally offensive nor against God, God Forbid there would ever be anything like Galactus.
My Ratings: Good / 5
—Michael, age 19
Positive—I would say that this installment was okay. The special effects were good, the storyline was a good, and the characters were good. But nothing was really “great.” Although a fairly clean film, with its comic-book-style violence and occasional chuckle here and there, I was disappointed that they had to throw in the bad words (as*, dam*) to make their point. The villains role in the film is clouded in mystery, and you never really get the whole story. My 10-year-old thought it was average, and we would agree.
My Ratings: Average / 4
—Diana, age 38
Positive—What an amazing movie! This has to be the best movie I have seen all year. Even out of the super 3: Shrek, Pirates, and Spider-man. I was shocked at first when I went into the theatre and saw that the movie was rated PG. You don’t find that many PG movies anymore, especially in this genre. I saw nothing offensive towards Christianity at all. This is probably the best super-hero movie since “Batman Begins” (whose sequel I am really looking forward to.)

It didn’t lack in special effects, or action, and the plot was to the point. The creators hit the nail on the head with this one. I was not expecting much out of this movie at all. It just blew me away. Unlike the Marvels other movie “Spider-Man 3.” I expected way too much from that. I would recommend it to anyone.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 5
—Adam Jenson, age 18
Positive—I didn’t like the club scene, or where they kept having the professor advocate Darwinian Evolution like it is anything other than wishful thinking—other than that it is a great film!
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4
—Ben, age 23
Positive—Everyone’s comments up to this point are well taken. I would summarize by saying, the movie deserves a C+ for overall effect. Take away the one less than wholesome scene and/or dialogue, and we could give it a B-. Yes, it was a bit cheesy, but for sheer entertainment, it was worth it. We will possibly get the DVD when it comes out, but not for sure.

The one primary objectionable scene was not only unnecessary but pushing the envelope for a supposedly child-friendly movie. And the Human Torch seemed to be far too stuck on himself, which he did remedy to some degree later on in the movie. Of course, like most other movies today, it has that “worldly” feel which we can expect from a Hollywood movie.

For a comic book theme, this is just good entertainment, less the one party scene mentioned above. …
My Ratings: Average / 3½
—Chila W., age 50
Positive—…a great movie. The only thing that I did not like was when the men went to the bachelor party. They could have left that out. They could of left out some of the language. But all in all I was a great movie. I would recommend it to teenagers and adults.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4
—Joanna Childress, age 16
Positive—I thought this movie was great. I didn’t give it the 5 because like others had said I would have liked to see more, but they have left that for the next one. Now down to business. There are some mild profanities in the movie. To be honest I don’t remember them, but I’ve heard worse in movies rated the same. There was no nudity to speak of, at the bachelor party, well it was a party and there were tight dresses.

There is one scene, and this will give away a small bit of the plot, where Johnny and Sue switch powers. Sue catches fire and when its all over she falls face down on the ground with no clothes on but all the is shown is her back, before she turns invisible. Granted the scene wasn’t needed but was, to older audiences funny. The action scenes where great! I like the fight scenes etc. and there was gore at all. There are good moral references of teamwork and sticking together when bad things happen or there is conflict between friends.

Overall, I would say, while not better than the first FF, it is a definite must see for anyone interested in the series or the comics or if you are looking for a good movie to see.
My Ratings: Good / 4½
—Jonathan, age 18
Positive—…I only objected with the Club scene, other then that this was a great movie. Just simple and fun. I reminded me of watching a comic book and believe that, that is what comic book movies should like. Visually it was beautiful that surfer was A+ graphics. I would recommend this to my friends and family and all who just want to have a nice easy movie experience with out the fear of sex or nudity or to6 harsh language.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4
—James Simison, age 22
Positive—Unlike the first one, the sexual themes in this movie are very slight. The only thing I didn’t like was how Richards was supporting evolution. The overall movie was very good. The Silver Surfer at first served a god of destruction, but saw the truth and turned against his god. This is a real good way to show the evil of Satan and the perfect love of Christ.
My Ratings: Good / 5
—Jon Gray, age 30
Negative—I didn’t see the first FF movie. I took my wife and kids to see FF2. I was very disappointed. It seemed nothing like the comic books I read growing up. The acting was terrible. The characterization of the Thing seemed all wrong to me. He is supposed to be a tragic figure. He wore a hat and trench coat because he didn’t want people scared when they saw him. I was hoping to see Galactus in all his helmeted glory, but it wasn’t meant to be.

All in all it just didn’t feel like a super-hero action film. It took too long to get to any of the FF in action. The climactic battle with Dr. Doom was also disappointing.
My Ratings: Offensive / 3½
—Robert L. McFaddin, age 41
Negative—I have one kid, and we left 5 minutes into the movie. This is a stupid, cheesy movie; never go see it. My 5 year old kid even hated it. We got are money back, and wished we never wasted it on this stupid film. I’m only 27, and I still think its offensive. It’s like taking a food you hate but have to eat 1 million of them in one second with out doing a funny face; yea it’s that stupid. I myself would rather eat my least favorite food then watch this horrible film.
My Ratings: Extremely Offensive / 1
—John, age 27
Negative—Although I gave this film a negative rating, I want to make it clear that the movie itself was very good, it was the bad language and a couple of suggestive scenes that I had a problem with. Much of my discontent could have been avoided if I had’ve just done my research prior to making the choice to take a 12 year old and especially a 7 year old to see it. I took them to this movie because I assumed it would be a “kid movie,” since it was supposed to be patterned from the comic and because it was being marketed to kids.

I had checked for comments on but it was too soon after the movie’s release and there were no reviews at that time so I made the choice of going ahead to see it without the usual research. However, upon settling down into our theater seats and viewing some previews that were very much geared toward an adult audience I began to feel as if maybe this was a poor choice for our family and that we should leave… but we didn’t, we stayed.

Although the movie had great special effects and a storyline that captured the kids attention; I don’t usually allow my children to watch a movie that has this much bad language and I felt that this movie was too mature, especially for my 7 year old. For older teens and adults, I would definitely recommend the movie, but I would urge parents of elementary school aged kids to take them to something a little more wholesome.
My Ratings: Offensive / 4½
—Tammy, age 36
Negative—My wife and I took our 10 and 8yr. old sons to see this movie because it was rated PG and because the moral rating on was better than average. I read reviews that stated the film makers had toned it back to get a PG rating.

After attending the movie though, we realized we had made a bad decision. Although the movie had potential for a great plot and decent acting, and although the special effects were good, this movie was littered with the typical Hollywood moral values. There were lots of lines with four-letter curse words (D*MN, etc.) as well as otherwise rude language (CR*P used quite a bit.)

Furthermore, there was lots of sexual references and general immodesty including: a bachelor party with scantily-dressed women, one of the Fantastic 4 men in only a towel making a pass at another woman, and another reference to one of the characters (the rock guy) having sex with his girlfriend. I wish we had known this before attending. I’m not sure how this movie passes for PG other than the moral bar has been lowered so far and Hollywood wants us to believe this is acceptable / normal behavior.

This could have been a great movie had they only left out the morally bad stuff which was not needed at all. I would not recommend this movie.
My Ratings: Very Offensive / 3½
—Tom, age 40
Comments from young people
Positive—This might be coming from a comic book fan, but I really liked this movie!
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4½
—Alex Briggs, age 11
Positive—Overall, I definitely enjoyed watching Fantastic Four. I was entertained the entire time… the special effects were great… the acting was decent… and the storyline was very interesting and entertaining. However, how it got by with a PG-rating is beyond me. It should have been PG-13 for many reasons. Maybe a mild PG-13, but PG-13 nonetheless. There were several sexual innuendos, and Jessica Alba, even though nothing is seen, has no clothes on in public in one scene! The violence was average for a superhero movie, nothing nobody has not ever seen before. There were all more than a few cuss words, and a club scene.

Overall, I don’t think that this movie is appropriate for anyone under the ages of 11 or 12, and the PG-rating should not be taken lightly. …
My Ratings: Average / 4½
—Jessaca, age 15
Positive—I saw this movie at 12:01 last night, and came in with very high expectations. I was not disappointed. The movie has good action, suspenseful, and had a good plot. It had a little innuendo, but nothing real serious. I suggest this movie for any age. I was a fan of the 1st one and was equally impressed with one.
My Ratings: Average / 3½
—Nate Doederlein, age 12
Positive—I went to see this movie with my dad for an early Father’s Day gift. We both agreed that it was a well made film, and it deserved a PG-rating. However, the movie could have done without the usage of some of the words like the “a” word etc. But there was only about 5 or 6 words that could have been left out. There was also a phrase that Johnny said that wasn’t very appropriate. Other than that the movie overall was very well made and my dad, and I would gladly go and watch again. I would recommend this movie for ages 10 and up.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4½
—Erika, age 13
Positive—I’ve been looking forward to seeing “Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer” since last fall. I was definitely encouraged when I found it to be one of the few exciting and adventuresome films that was relatively clean. The quality of the film was excellent—there were quite a few “fantastic” special effects!

Furthermore, the moral quality of this movie was better than most movies I’ve seen. There was very little sensuality, although there were a few one-liners that were aimed at adult understanding. There was some violence and language, but the “PG” rating was very fair. I would recommend this movie to almost everyone.
My Ratings: Good / 5
—Trisha, age 16
Positive—I saw this movie with my mom, and we both loved it. It made us laugh, and it kept us in suspense throughout the entire movie… of course, in typical Hollywood style, they had to throw in cuss words, but I tried to look past that and focus on the story… which didn’t disappoint me. I loved the first movie and I love the second one even more…

I liked how it showed the relationships between sue storm and reed richards… They also did a great job showing the sibling relationship between Sue and Johnny Storm. In the first one they were mostly arguing so it was good to see them caring for each other in this one… The Silver Surfer was great… at first u want him to be defeated but by the end u are cheering him on and and find out that one of the four would have died without this movie the character have all changed and developed and it is clear that they all care for each other.

I have seen this movie twice and I plan of seeing it again! I really liked this movie and I think everyone can enjoy it!
My Ratings: Better than Average / 5
—Stephanie, age 16
Positive—I really loved the whole movie and I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. You really want to know who the Silver Surfer was. You should go see this movie.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 4
—Nick, age 14
Positive—In a christian view, I thought that this movie was very good. There were a few words and some crude jokes, but nothing to really get upset at. The only part I didn’t like was the bachelor party. Although they didn’t show anything, there are a few skimpily dressed women dancing.

This movie was very good, but kind of short. I would have liked too see some more. The good things about the movie were, Sue and Johnny were more of a brother and sister. I really liked the part before the wedding. I also liked that Johnny grew more mature, and Reed became a leader. The special effects were superb.

The bad things about the movie are, first, Jessica’s acting. I was expecting a little more out of Jessica, she looked the part, but she didn’t seem natural. And second, There should have been more action scenes. The ones they had were good, but they could have put a little more in. I really enjoyed it, it was almost everything I wanted it to be.
My Ratings: Average / 4
—Josh, age 17
Neutral—Okay, I saw this movie with a couple of friends and thought it was kinda stupid. It had some curse words in it that could have been replaced with other words. The words were poorly chosen. I wouldn’t recommend it for younger children or even teens. There was sexual nudity in the movie. There was a line said,by Johnny, that was not chosen properly.

As a Christ follower, it was a very poor movie. The violence was kinda over extreme. There was a part were someone got stabbed with a spear-type thing. I wouldn’t really recommend it. So I think going and seeing something else would be more fun cause it was kinda boring. …
My Ratings: Average / 2
—Kära, age 13
Negative—I thought this movie was extremely cheesy. My friends and I decided to go see this movie for fun, and the whole entire time we were confused about the plot. This movie was very clean, but when they tried to make a joke it didn’t work.
My Ratings: Average / 2
—Kristen, age 14
Positive—This was a great movie. I think it should only be watched by children 12 and up. I personally loved it, although it wasn’t the best movie that I have seen. My uncle said it was good, but the comic book was better. All in all, it was a pretty good movie to watch, but to me it was much better than the first.
My Ratings: Average / 4½
—Jezzeka, age 12
Positive—I absolutely loved this movie! I thought that it was much better than the first one! First of all, the language was toned down considerably from the first one. I only heard two or three mild words in the entire movie. There were a few very subtle sexual innuendos that will go right over the heads of most children.

There were lots of positive messages in it. The storyline was pretty good most of the time, but there were a few stretches. It was a little campy at times but it was always fun. I really enjoyed this and I think that it’s definitely worth purchasing!
My Ratings: Better than Average / 3
—Shelby Purvis, age 16
Neutral—I went to see FF2 with my family, and thought it was okay. The filmmaking was pretty good, and I liked how they portrayed the silver surfer. However, I was frustrated at the fact that the actors swore a few times. I was also disappointed at how they never really showed Galactus. It was okay, but I’d stick to the FF comic books instead.
My Ratings: Better than Average / 3½
—Emily, age 14