This latest Marvel movie from Sony is … just bats, man.
Apologies to the Caped Crusader. “Morbius” is a spin on the vampire legend that’s a long way from the intrigue of “Nosferatu” or “Blade.”
It’s a preposterous, ungainly, entry into the MCU that sometimes is unintentionally hilarious. Its blurry plot never finds its tone.
That’s not the fault of Oscar winner Jared Leto (“House of Gucci,”) who gives it his all as Dr. Michael Morbius, a brilliant man who has suffered from a blood disorder all his life. We first meet him in his quest to gather vampire bats in a jungle setting, and then we see him back at the hospital where he is dedicated to research and to saving lives.
Morbius has a frail constitution and walks with crutches. That is, until he develops a serum that gives him super-human strength. It also (sometimes) turns him into a ghastly looking vampire with a thirst for blood, the ability to fly, and a bat’s echolocation ability. All is well while the doctor can feast on artificial blood, but he soon needs to real thing to keep going.
There’s a rival – it wouldn’t be fair to reveal who this is – because Morbius needs a nemesis.
For a movie with so little to endear itself to an audience, there’s a lot going on visually, such as a cloud of something-or-other that follows Morbius when he flies around, and some slow-motion scenes. There’s also a “Matrix”-esque effect that shows how Morbius can dodge bullets.
Comics fans will understand references in the extra scenes in the credits. And Marvel fans in general … well, they might want to skip this and wait for the arrival of the newest adventure of Spider-Man.
1 1/2 stars
Rated: PG-13 for violence and foul language.
Running time: 104 minutes.
At Cinemark, Davenport; Regal Cinemas, Moline; and Palms 10, Muscatine.
Watch the trailer here.