After playing the Joker in the DC Universe, Jared Leto switches to a Marvel character in the role of the “living vampire”.
As a child, Michael Morbius had suffered from a rare blood disorder. Living in an orphanage, young Michael meets Milo, a young boy who has the same rare disease. Michael and Milo form a bond with the former promising the latter he will one day find a cure for the disease. As Michael is quite the genius, he eventually finds himself studying medicine with a hope to find the cure to the disease that has struck both.
Michael is now a prominent doctor who may have stumbled upon finding a cure. After many failed attempts, he decides to extract the blood of a vampire bat as a last resort. Heading to South America, Michael decides to sacrifice himself and attract the bats. The end result is that Michael has been cured but there are some side effects. He has superhuman strength, radar, and he has become a vampire. When Milo learns of the cure, he intends to use it himself and this forces Michael to make a decision that will change his life forever.
In the world of superhero films, actors have gone both the DC and Marvel route. Ryan Reynolds is one perfect example, going from Green Lantern to his more iconic take on Deadpool. Halle Berry was both Catwoman and Storm of the X-Men. Ben Affleck was both Daredevil and Batman. Idris Elba was Heimdall in the Thor franchise and as Bloodsport in The Suicide Squad. Now, it’s Jared Leto’s turn after his role as the Joker in the first Suicide Squad movie and in a dream sequence in Zack Snyder’s Justice League.
Joining Sony’s Spider-Man Universe, formerly known as the Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters, Leto plays the titular role of Morbius, who in the comics started out as a villain of Spider-Man who is today, an anti-hero. The film gives Leto a chance to go both sides of the spectrum, at times going full killer mode before his human side gets the better of him and thus, uses his newfound powers for the sake of good. Leto carries the film, which seems to be a bit meh at times because there were times when the film felt a but slow moving. It is when we see Leto use his powers that things are worth checking out.
As much as it may be exciting to see Matt Smith, a former Doctor Who, as a villain, this wasn’t exactly the film for him to play a believable villain. The blame isn’t entirely on him, but more on the script. He comes off more as bland with his only intention of just receiving the cure rather than playing a villain who makes some sort of impact. It just falls flat, but once he and Michael have their climactic fight, it’s rather a choice of opinion of whether you would care at this point or not. However, it does lead to a mid-credit scene featuring a familiar face and could be a possible lead up to a long dormant project.
Morbius is not completely bad, but it does have its flaws. While Jared Leto does his best to dive the film, it suffers from a bland script, which in turns leads to more blandness in Matt Smith’s villain. The action is a plus though, but a good script needs to compliment it.
WFG RATING: C+
A Columbia Pictures production in association with Marvel. Director: Daniel Espinosa. Producers: Avi Arad, Lucas Foster, and Matt Tolmach. Writers: Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless; based on the character created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane. Cinematography: Oliver Wood. Editing: Pietro Scalia.
Cast: Jared Leto, Matt Smith, Adria Arjona, Tyrese Gibson, Jared Harris, Al Madrugal, Michael Keaton, Zaris-Angel Hator.