Morbius (2022) – movie review


Directed by Daniel Espinosa.
Starring Jared Leto, Matt Smith, Adria Arjona, Jared Harris, Al Madrigal, Therese Gibson, Michael Keaton, Charlie Shotwell, and Corey Johnson.


Biochemist Michael Morbius tries to cure himself of a rare blood disease, but inadvertently infects himself with a form of vampire.


Apparently, the days of lazy, humiliating superhero movies are not over yet. Sure, there are still misfires here and there, but at least they have a sense of creative ambition or ideas worth giving a second chance at in Part Two. Morbius It’s the worst comic book adaptation since the 20th century Fox has failed miserably The Fantastic Four. It has some of the ugliest special effects seen in recent movies with characters that look absolutely ridiculous when letting go of your inner vampire. Transformations like this not only lack subtlety and detail, but look and act so absurd that it’s hard to blame someone for spending those 100 minutes hoping someone will give Dr. Michael Morbius (Jared Leto, for once recently, the least of the film’s problems) Snickers bar because it’s not just him when he’s bloodthirsty.

Good characters and storytelling can always beat bad CGI. Unfortunately, Morbius It was designed by a panel (directed by Daniel Espinosa with screenwriting credits from Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless) to create aspects of characters without actually distinguishing them. Based on a character created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane, Morbius He only seems interested in giving viewers a cliffnotes version of the hero. Without context, the film begins with the good doctor securing exotic bats from Costa Rica to bring them back to New York. It’s been clarified that he was born with a blood disease, but that doesn’t stop the entire sequence from feeling like you’ve entered the middle of the story.

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From there, the story goes back thirty years to a children’s hospital for those with similar conditions, where he befriends a bully Michael Milo (played by Matt Smith as an adult). This is also where Michael demonstrates wayward wit, repairing a malfunctioning transfusion device by opening the control panel and dotting it with a ballpoint pen. Their doctor, Emil Nichols (the lost Jared Harris), points to this with almost the same rendition as the notorious guy impressed Tony Stark by building something in a cave with a box of scraps. It’s as if the filmmakers were desperate to become another quotable sensation. Hell, at one point, when Michael became a vampire and was running out of blood satiation, he joked, “You won’t love me when I’m hungry,” as if he was a different version of The Incredible Hulk. It’s definitely not a funny joke and it just feels like the writers can’t be bothered to write the character.

Anyway, Michael got on a full educational journey and became the successful doctor that was introduced to him, dedicating his life to treating this blood disease. He is also still friends with Milo, and seems unbreakable as they compare their resilience and strength to Spartans (they are the few against the many). Lest you think the filmmakers might go somewhere with that analogy, they don’t. It isn’t long before Michael’s experiences irrevocably change him in unexpected ways, killing and drinking the blood of an entire security team. Having regained his senses through artificial blood, he vows to make sure that never happens again while experiencing various changes in his body.

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Meanwhile, his medical assistant Martin Bancroft (Adria Arjuna) looks on in horror and is then hooked into a general romantic subplot. Shortly thereafter (and concocted like almost every aspect of this plot), Milo realizes Michael has made an effective serum out of the bat and doesn’t hesitate for a second to take it behind his back, knowing full well just what the cure provides from his unstoppable cravings. Impossible to resist the craving for blood With the artificial blood running out, Michael may have to do the unthinkable just to make sure he never hurts anyone again, but not before stopping Milo.

Play several action sequences that feel inspired by a terrible early-2000s video game adaptation of a comic book movie (one of Michael’s abilities is echolocation, which is visually realized as the player taps their right thumb stick and scans an area, but with nice effects). There are many slow motion players like the Zack Snyder movie, but watching them isn’t as exhilarating. The final fight ends as quickly as it began, although that may be a blessing in disguise, given the betrayal and the accumulated rivalry between Michael and Mel.

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Morbius It also has a major problematic element with its ill-defined motives for the handicapped villain. Yes, it makes sense that Milo would want others to know what his illness and emotional pain are feeling, but he’s been called up to 11 here with a chaotic evil uninterested in the humanity of the villain. The potential for a strong bottom line with Morbius exists if the focus on these disabled characters with a measure of respect and care goes beyond “one is a superhero, the other is a villain”. Matt Smith tries to give Milo a sparkling and forgiving character, but it doesn’t quite amount to anything because the writing is thin. Meanwhile, Jared Leto somewhat lacks the charisma and spark to play a human/vampire hybrid capable of miraculous feats.

One of the only nice things we can say about her Morbius is that due to its fast paced and insistence on hitting plot points per minute, it’s not necessarily boring, and it quickly moves from one stationary piece to the next. The initial vampire metamorphosis and attack is somewhat entertaining to watch. Regardless, the movie itself appears to be dying of blood disease from its opening scene. Perhaps if one takes a serum, they will crave better movies.

Flickering legend evaluation – movie: ★ / movie: ★ ★

Robert Cogder is a member of the Chicago Society of Film Critics and the Critics’ Choice Association. He is also the editor of Flickering Myth Reviews. Check here for new reviews, follow me Twitter or Letterboxd, or email me at

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