Morbius will be critic-proof to a lot of cinema-goers who will simply see anything related to Marvel, regardless of reviews, but it’s an essential public service to prepare all interested folks with the knowledge that this is one of the most perfunctory and pointless films ever made.
In fact, this origin story of Spider-Man nemesis Dr Michael Morbius (Jared Leto) – a sickly scientist who turns into a vampire after a medical experiment gone wrong – makes its case as the single worst film in comic book film history, striving for the number one spot with its active battle against entertainment values. When compared to the usual suspects on “Worst Of” listicles, the failures of the craft here can be deduced one by one.
Catwoman, for example, benefited from unintentional comedy. On the other hand, this movie hates levity, even opting to delete a joke that was in the trailer. The legacy of David Ayer’s infamous Suicide Squad lives on through its memorably cringy quotes, whereas every line here is immediately forgettable, with some dialogue seemingly left from a skeletal outline of the script. The dreadful acting in Batman & Robin can be ironically appreciated, whilst one wishes Leto was in his usual “try-hard” mode as the Living Vampire. There’s also the sheer ugliness of the blue-grey colour palette, horrible pacing and action sequences that may have only looked fresh and exciting back in 2007. Ultimately, Morbius commits the most unforgivable sin of a bad film – it’s plainly, utterly, mind-numbingly boring, with nothing to offer in the way of further analysis from this writer’s standpoint.
What exacerbates the poor craft is the poor intentions. The goal of thrusting Morbius into the spotlight should be to tell a worthwhile story that will have us invested in his fate and explain why there’s a reason for this feature’s existence (in addition to capitalistic exploitation of a fandom, of course). For director Daniel Espinosa (Safe House, Life), regrettably, there is nothing on paper that distinguishes this character from the many supervillains who have also fallen victim to lab tragedies. It’s a particularly common trope in the Spider-Man universe and, frankly, after this and the terrible Venom movies, nobody deserves to sit through another Spidey tie-in that doesn’t actually feature the web-slinger himself. Morbius cements the idea that the only story of the Sinister Six worth exploring will be the one from Peter Parker’s perspective.
Morbius is released nationwide on 31st March 2022.
Watch the trailer for Morbius here: