Aquaman

 (76,389)
2 h 23 min2018X-RayPG-13
“Aquaman” reveals the origin story of half-human, half-Atlantean Arthur Curry and takes him on the journey of his lifetime-to discover if he is worthy of who he was born to be…a king.
Directors
James Wan
Starring
Jason MomoaAmber HeardWillem Dafoe
Genres
Science FictionFantasyAdventureAction
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
EnglishEnglish [Audio Description]
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Supporting actors
Patrick WilsonDolph LundgrenYahya Abdul-Mateen IILudi LinTemuera MorrisonNicole Kidman
Producers
Peter SafranRob Cowan
Studio
WARNER BROS.
Rating
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Content advisory
Alcohol usefoul languageviolence
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

76389 global ratings

  1. 76% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 13% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 7% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 2% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

H. BalaReviewed in the United States on December 25, 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
"Something, something, trident."
I remember when Aquaman couldn't go an hour without water and how, on Super Friends, he needed rescuing all the time. Look at dude now. I'm not saying that Jason Momoa is primarily responsible for rehabilitating Arthur Curry's image. Before him, Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis laid the groundwork in their 2011 comic book run. But because more people watch movies than read comics, Momoa gets credit for cementing Aquaman in our pop culture consciousness as a boss superhero and a legit badass.

If I were to rank these DCEU movies, I'd put AQUAMAN behind WONDER WOMAN, with WONDER WOMAN being easily the best of the lot. You gots to give horrormeister James Wan his propers. He dives, unapologetically, into this hybrid of sci-fi and high fantasy. This movie skews closer to FLASH GORDON than it does to a superhero flick. It's audacious spectacle. It's undersea insanity, rife with mammoth crabs and seahorses mounted as war steeds, and leviathans rising from the depths, and princesses garbed in luminous jellyfish gowns. Soak in the detailed worldbuilding as we're taken for a ride to explore not only the great, sunken city of Atlantis but the other six demesnes that make up the seven undersea kingdoms. Except, one kingdom hasn't been underwater in millennia.

To this riot of ancient, isolationist civilizations comes a reluctant Arthur Curry. See his jaw drop as he beholds the splendor of Atlantis. It's ironic that, in this scenario, my man is the fish out of water. Arthur still wants no part of being a full-fledged hero. He'd rather do the saving on his own time; that way, he's sure to make happy hour. AQUAMAN is an origin story and a quest story, and it takes place after JUSTICE LEAGUE. And, yeah, it still shares continuity with the other DCEU properties - there's one fleeting reference made about Steppenwolf. Me, I'm very familiar with Aquaman's origin story, and the movie clings close enough to the source material. Arthur Curry, product of a lighthouse keeper and a princess of Atlantis doing the brown-chicken-brown-cow. I will say that Arthur's mother, Queen Atlanna - as played by a fierce Nicole Kidman - is an utter badass in the movie.

It's undeniably a visual feast, I say on par with AVATAR. I had big fun watching it, but I had to get past how the story is so very cheesy. The dialogue is corny. Characters indulge in these exaggerated hero poses. They make boastful proclamations where they declare who they are, and you could hear it's in caps. A saving grace is that the movie is self-aware enough to know how corny it's being.

Some are hating on Amber Heard and how she plays Mera. Some say there's no spark between her and Momoa, but those someones can step off. Heard's emoting may not be Merchant Ivory worthy, but there's heat between her and Momoa. And I'm just gratified that they got her action sequences right. I get a thrill each time Mera manipulates hard water, something I'd seen her do so many times in the comics.

Some say AQUAMAN jumped the shark with that one camera shot of an octopus banging on the drums. And it's hard to argue that. I'll just say, by that time, you knew you were in for silly.

Is the plot all over the place? Yes. The story's scattershot. Is it too much CG? Not sure. Do you think they could have achieved these shots with practical effects? I don't think so. However, the third act, when it was all-out war in the depths, and every inch of the screen is crammed with CG-rendered fish waging war, it does take on this look of a swarm of possessed sampler plates from Red Lobster.

I'm an easy mark, so 4 out of 5 stars for AQUAMAN. The vibrant images leap off the screen. Momoa, that larger-than-life bad boy beefcake, seems to be having the time of his life. He's got charisma to burn, and his personal energy carries the movie thru. Ocean Master and Black Manta (great visual design!) come in solid as the adversaries, except those two happen to be Aquaman's two greatest arch-nemeses, so I'm thinking they shot their load when it comes to villains. Who's the big bad in the sequel? They may have to settle for nasty whale hunters or some jerk who decides to pee in the ocean.

There is one end-credit scene, and it turns up in the middle of the credits, and it's underwhelming. No need to stay until the very end as there's nothing but the house lights coming on.
525 people found this helpful
Kid KyotoReviewed in the United States on January 23, 2019
1.0 out of 5 stars
Just awful
Aquaman is one of those films where they clearly had the sets and costumes and special effects lined up before they had a plot and it just shows.

In a nutshell our hero must go on a quest to prove he is the true king of Atlantis before his evil half brother can unite the kingdoms and wage war on the surface. Not a bad premise.

But the plot makes little sense, a trip to a million year old temple in the desert (from when the Sahara was an ocean!) leads somehow to a Roman temple (2000 years old give or take) to a lost world of dinosaurs and a magic McGuffin.

Jason Momoa is as charming as the script allows but he has no chemistry with Amber Heard or Nichole Kidman his girlfriend and mom. The undersea battles are impressive, but there's so much stuff in there I was hard pressed to remember or care who was who or what was what. A lot of time is spent developing the villain Black Manta only for him to be killed off halfway through.

For me it was a waste of time and money.
321 people found this helpful
Graham SwearingenReviewed in the United States on December 21, 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
Aquaman
I was lucky enough to snag tickets to the December 15th showing of this film presented by Atom Tickets through Amazon, exclusively for Prime members. Hopefully this continues, I'd like to see more films in theaters before they open nation wide. The theater was packed, everyone was excited to be there and the film itself I think is the best of the DCEU films to date.

Aquaman is a fun popcorn flick, far less serious and dark in tone compared to the rest of the DCEU films, this isn't the edited mess that Batman V Superman or Justice League was. This film really should have released before Justice League. James Wan does a great job here keeping things light, action is fun and peppered throughout. My biggest gripe of the film was some of the music choices, I found some songs to ruin the tone of scenes or just came off as the wrong song for the moment. Performances across the board are generally good, the villains in this film are really strong. Patrick Wilson as Orm, Arthur's (Aguaman) half brother is fun, over the top, and the two of them together have an almost Thor/Loki type relationship that will be fun to watch unfold over future films. Black Manta was my favorite parts of the film, had a very cool 1980's action vibe to his scenes and he felt like a real threat to Arthur. Arthur (Jason Mamoa) seems to have even more fun as Aquaman here than ever before, and seeing him in the iconic Orange and Green costume by act 3 was a highlight.

I enjoyed that this film was a bit of a romcom, action film, epic, so there's a little bit for everyone. I liked that it was more fun like Suicide Squad and less serious that some of the other DCEU films. For those looking for a heavy tie in to the rest of the DCEU you may be a little disappointed, this is very much a stand alone film. Humor, action, pacing, acting and visuals are all very well done and make for a solid film from beginning to end. If you've enjoyed Aquaman in the other DCEU films I think you'll really love what gets offered up here. This film comes APPROVED.
255 people found this helpful
K. CraigReviewed in the United States on March 27, 2019
1.0 out of 5 stars
Unbelievably bad, likely to become a cult clasic
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From the outset this was bad, in fact it was so bad at first I thought it was a spoof on superhero movies. But no such luck, most of the actors were taking themselves way too seriously. The only saving grace was Jason Mamoa hamming it up throughout the whole movie. I was also surprised by a good, if way to serious, Dolph Lundgren performance and a unbelievably bad Nicole Kidman performance. It was like a made for the Sci-Fi channel bad performances by most of the cast. In fact it was Kidman's performance in the early scenes that at first made me think this a spoof. She faints in a truly over the top way like in a comedy stage play depicting an outrageously bad leading actress. Speaking of outrageously bad the special effects were awful, the modern day equivalent of Land of The Lost kids Saturday morning show from the 1970s. The comparison is for their poor implementation of Green/Blue screen technology, leaving little doubt that the actors were in a studio in front of a blank screen. And what was up with treating whales as fish? They are mammals who need to breath air not fish swimming at the bottom of the ocean like sharks. I can't go on, the horror, the horror of it all.... No seriously this really sucked.
124 people found this helpful
XReviewed in the United States on April 1, 2019
1.0 out of 5 stars
Hilariously Awful
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Wow - this has now vaulted to near the top of my list of the worst movies I've ever seen. It's right up (down?) there with National Treasure. This is a preposterously awful mess of cliched dialogue, ridiculous plot elements, terrible acting, insanely inept musical scoring, did I mention the cliched dialogue? The whole thing is a cheesy pastiche in which virtually every scene was stolen from somewhere: Lord of the Rings? Check. Star Wars? Check. Raiders of the Lost Ark? Check. Finding Nemo? Check. Romancing the Stone? Check. Tintin? Check. The list could go on, but you get the idea. My family and I were laughing at its awfulness throughout most of it. So, if you like your movies hilariously, even embarrassingly, bad, then have I got a movie for you!
116 people found this helpful
KarToon12Reviewed in the United States on December 28, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
DC's most underappreciated hero gets the epic treatment he deserves
While Marvel Studios seems to have been on a role for the past few years, churning out one superhero hit after the next, DC has had to play massive catch up. It seems they've fallen into a rut of having all their movies revolve around either Superman or Batman, with all the other members of the Justice League getting pushed to the wayside (being confined to just having television series). And despite the huge success of Wonder Woman's solo film, fans seemed to be lukewarm towards "Batman v Superman" and "Justice League." It seemed that DC would continue to succeed just on TV, leaving their rival to dominate the silver screen. I say all this because one can see how much the cards were arguably stacked against this film even upon announcement. From what I could see, hardly anyone seemed to have much faith in a movie about a superhero that's largely been seen as "lame", and has been the butt of countless jokes for decades. Although his "Justice League" appearance helped to "toughen" him up a bit, it looked like he'd always be regulated to "that guy from the Superfriends who could talk to fish".

Thankfully, this film succeeded at exceeding everyone's expectations. Much like "Guardians of the Galaxy" and "Antman", this film manages to show how cool Aquaman can really be when written well, while also taking the somewhat "sillier" aspects of his mythos and either making them cool, or outright reveling in the silliness, leading to one of the most fun adventures I've seen in a long time.

Taking place one year after the events of "Justice League", the half human/half Atlantean--Arthur Curry--has been slowly making a public name for himself as he rescues people and protects the ocean. But his relatively quiet life is disturbed when Mera, an Atlantean representative, tracks down Arthur to inform him that all the various undersea kingdoms are beginning to unite to wage war against the surface world; the forces led by Arthur's half brother, King Orm. With secret schemes and double crosses happening on many sides of the conflict, a high tech pirate swearing revenge over the death of his father at Arthur's hands, and the fate of the surface and the sea hanging in the balance, can the so-called "half breed" son of two very different worlds be able to prove himself as the rightful king of the sea?

As previously mentioned, Aquaman was an arguably tricky character to adapt to film, considering many of the outlandish elements of his world and powers. But the filmmakers did a fantastic job in building and fleshing out the mythos surrounding the kingdoms of the sea, and striking a great balance between giving the Atlantean legends a sense of scope and respect....while also having unabashed fun with the "cartoony" side of his world. There's plenty of homages to the classic comics and cartoons, from character designs, to people riding atop giant sharks and seahorses, to those infamous rings coming out of Arthur's head when he speaks to marine life, complete with a variation of the iconic "boop, boop, boop" noise. The undersea environments are creatively designed, with the most eye-popping colors out of all the DC films. And once the plot really gets going, it turns into a swash-buckling, treasure hunt adventure straight out of Indiana Jones.

And the characters are just as entertaining to watch. Arthur himself manages to be both a badass and a sweetheart. He's "toughened up" in terms of design, but without dissolving into "grittiness". His toughness comes from just how cool he is---being able to take down hordes of enemies, but also having no shame or qualms about hugging his dad or tenderly taking his girlfriend around a lovely city. He clearly loves his parents; holds nothing against them when he's continuously mocked for his heritage, and though he's quick to fight, he almost always thinks through his actions and chooses communication first. He marvels in wonder at every new thing he comes across, and despite the stakes being high, he still takes time to find some fun and joy in the sheer act of living. Much of this is also reflected in Mera, who is a great strategist and warrior, but also has plenty of tender and comedic moments, especially when she becomes the literal "fish out of water" as she navigates the surface world. The two of them complement each other perfectly, and help teach one another about their respective worlds. (Take note Hollywood; THIS is how you write the "warrior male" and "strong female" characters.)

King Orm isn't nearly as developed, and is mostly the classic "scheming brother wants the throne" plot. But his motivations for conquest ARE understandable, and put him slightly above a cartoon supervillain. And as for the pirate who seeks revenge against Arthur for the death of his father--the man who will become Black Manta---he gets a highly entertaining action sequence, but for the most part, is underutilized (which surprised me, considering he's a much more famous Aquaman adversary). But if the last scene is anything to go by, it's clear he'll be back in a sequel.

And I really hope this DOES get a sequel. This was one of the most fun and entertaining adventure films I've seen in a long time--harkening back to the Harryhausen epics like "Clash of the Titans". If DC keeps following this example, then maybe their cinematic universe can be reignited again.
127 people found this helpful
RichReviewed in the United States on March 27, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
All Hail King Arthur!
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Aquaman is an awesome movie! I know a lot of people will hate this movie, but that's probably because it's not a Marvel movie. This movie flew by the entire time (2h 23mi) I watched it. There are two minor annoyances in this movie, but they didn't bother me that much. The first minor thing that bothered me, is the ratio bars on top and bottom would switch back and fourth between 16:9 and full screen, but it mainly stays full screen and looks absolutely amazing in 4K. The second minor thing is the whole King Arthur part. I thought they could've thought of something a little more original than that. Besides those two minor things, I absolutely loved this movie and had to give it 5 stars. Jason Momoa and Amber Heard were great together also. They make a perfect Aquaman and Mera. I would love to say more about the movie, but I don't want to spoil anything. If you're a DC fan, you'll love this, and if not, you probably won't. There's a little minority of people who like both DC and Marvel like me, but not many.
53 people found this helpful
RDDReviewed in the United States on March 30, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
The Second-Best film in the DC Extended Universe!
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James Wan’s “Aquaman” is the sixth film in the DC Extended Universe film franchise, taking place after the events of Zack Snyder’s “Justice League.” Though Aquaman (Jason Momoa) first appeared in “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” this is the second film in which he plays a key role and it tells both his origin and works to restore the character to more of his comic book persona. Atlantis previously appeared in “Justice League,” but this film spends a greater amount of time focusing on its history and culture, with warring kingdoms and political intrigue reminiscent of the fantasy elements from Kenneth Branagh’s “Thor.”

The films plot alternates between flashbacks and events set in the present day. The flashbacks explain that Arthur Curry’s mother, Atlanna (Nicole Kidman) was arranged to be married to the King. She fled to the surface world, where she met lighthouse keeper Thomas Curry (Temuera Morrison). They fell in love and had Arthur. Atlantean forces came looking for Atlanna and, to keep Thomas and Arthur safe, she returned. Later, the King’s vizier Nuidis Vulko (Willem Dafoe) trained young Arthur to use his powers.

The events in the present focus on Patrick Wilson, the younger half-brother of Arthur Curry, who seeks to take control of the Atlantean kingdoms in order to wage war on the surface world. Arthur, only recently having decided to become a hero after the events of “Justice League,” is reluctant to get involved, but a combination of Mera (Amber Heard)’s persuasion and Orm’s attacks on the surface world demonstrate to him that he must take his place as Ocean Master. In one of his earlier heroic actions, Aquaman let a pirate die and the pirate’s son David Kane (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) swore revenge, eventually becoming Black Manta. In order to demonstrate his claim, Arthur must seek the Trident of Atlan, a mystical weapon much like Excalibur, which will allow him to unite the kingdoms.

Though this film is the third appearance of Momoa’s Aquaman, it’s a relatively self-contained story much like Patty Jenkins’ “Wonder Woman.” Like that earlier film, the story forgoes much of the earlier color palette of the Snyder-directed DCEU films to embrace bold colors and stylized worlds. The two suggest a needed redirect for DC films in order to make this a viable franchise with films that can stand on their own. Bonus features on the Blu-ray include insight into Momoa becoming Aquaman, developing the supporting heroes and villains, and several on world-building focusing on everything from designing Atlantis to Atlantean fighting techniques to the undersea creatures and technology in the film.
33 people found this helpful
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