The student-run online newspaper for Starr's Mill High School

The Prowler

The student-run online newspaper for Starr's Mill High School

The Prowler

The student-run online newspaper for Starr's Mill High School

The Prowler

‘Blue Beetle’ worth box office buzz

WB Pictures
Reyes after being carried into space by Khaji Da. DC’s latest movie “Blue Beetle” is a wonderful movie because of its characters and setting but would benefit from more development in its romance subplot and villain.

Since 2006, Jaime Reyes’ iteration of “The Blue Beetle” has become a fan favorite in the DC universe. After years of being a supporting character in various media, Reyes headlines his own movie, DC’s “Blue Beetle.” 

“Blue Beetle” is a refreshingly fun movie from DC that could have benefitted from being developed more with its subplots.

The bond between the family is definitely a highlight of the movie.

— Editor-in-Chief Micah Freeman

This film follows Jaime as he tries to figure out how to get rid of an alien artifact named Khaji Da that has grafted itself onto his spine. While he attempts to find a way to get it off him, businesswoman Victoria Kord wants the artifact for herself so that she can complete her cyborg technology, the One Man Army Corps.

The heart of this movie is the Reyes family. Jaime’s mom, sister, dad, uncle, and grandma give him a tight circle of support. From the movie’s beginning, it is clear that they are close, with all of them cheering on Jaime when he goes into Kord Industries for a job. Jaime and his sister banter back and forth in a way that feels natural. The bond between the family is definitely a highlight of the movie.

The relationship between Khaji and Jaime also shines here. While in other pieces of media, they have regular disagreements due to Khaji’s nature of being a weapon and Jaime sticking to heroic values. In this film, they are on the same page.

Of course, it starts like the other iterations due to Jaime being reluctant to be the host for Khaji, and it taking him from his family by force. However, by the third act, they are working as a team. Khaji even reminds Jaime of his values by telling him that they are not killers when Jaime gets close to crossing that line.

The visuals in the movie look fantastic throughout. The Blue Beetle suit itself is extraordinarily comic-accurate and looks fantastic. It does not look too busy but still gives the feel that this would be a useful piece of armor. 

The setting of the movie, Palmara City, also looks terrific. In contrast to the drab cities in the past few DC movies, Palmara is bright and vibrant, with neon lights and shining billboards. The centerpiece of the city, the Kord Industries building, has a futuristic look to it.

OMAC is a driving force for Victoria, but the actual character is boring.

— Editor-in-Chief Micah Freeman

The performances in this film are magnificent. Xolo Maridueña gives the character of Jaime Reyes a great range of emotions. When Khaji first activates, Jaime sounds terrified of what he is capable of. There is a moment when Victoria Kord kidnaps Jaime and is attempting to get Khaji off him, in that moment, Xolo gives a visceral reaction that shows how pained he is. 

Xolo is not the only one to give a wonderful performance. Susan Sarandon as Victoria Kord gives a threatening performance. Kord is a manipulative, condescending, and above all threatening villain. She puts on the face of the helpful and pleasant CEO of Kord Industries, but behind closed doors, she is willing to do anything she can to unlock the power of Khaji Da, even killing Jaime.

Though this movie deserves praise for its relationships, visuals, and acting, there are a few aspects that feel undercooked. The main one is the secondary villain, OMAC. OMAC is a driving force for Victoria, but the actual character is boring. He does not really have motivation until the very end when it is revealed that he is a victim of Kord Industries’ weapons. However, until that reveal, he just stands on the sidelines.

Another underdeveloped element of the movie is the romance between Jaime and Victoria Kord’s niece, Jenny Kord. Jenny is the one that hands Khaji to Jaime after stealing it from Kord Industries, thinking it would not activate. From their first meeting, it is clear that Jaime has a crush on her, but throughout the movie, they do not have many one-on-one interactions before they become a couple. The film would have benefitted from giving the two more time together.

Despite having a boring secondary villain and an underdeveloped love subplot, ”Blue Beetle” is a fun movie DC has needed for years. I hope that more of DC’s movies take a page out of this delightful movie’s book in terms of character focus.

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