Super Heroes PG-13 Running time: 1:45
IMDB rating: 5.7 Aspect: 4:3, Wide; Languages: English, Spanish; Subtitles: English, Spanish; Audio: DD 5.1
If you prefer your cataclysms free of terrorist overtones and your superheroes unburdened by Freudian subtext-sometimes a comic book is just a comic book, after all-you could do worse than this flick. Four scientists and their corporate sponsor (guess who's the bad guy) are conducting experiments on a space station when they're hit by an unexpectedly powerful blast of solar radiation, altering their DNA and giving them freakish powers that cleverly reflect their personalities. Playing the characters created by the Marvel Comics master Stan Lee, the actors Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, and Michael Chiklis inhabit their dual identities gracefully; they're superheroes without being superstars. It may not have the emotional sweep of "Superman" or "Spider-Man," but "Fantastic Four" glides along free of the dark, pretentious weight of some recent superhero films. The director, Tim Story ("Barbershop"), tells his tale with clarity and wit. It's a simple popcorn movie-not fantastic, but fun.