No, this is not one of the Boy Wonder’s many quips to the Caped Crusader (that I am aware of, anyway). This comes from the 1994 movie The Fantastic Four. Never heard of it? Wasn’t it made more recently than that? These are not surprising questions. In the early ’90s a theatrical version of the superhero team nearly made it to the multiplex. Promotional materials were created (a trailer, movie posters, even a PG rating). However, it was shelved for one of several reasons that I will not dwell upon. Instead, I will comment on the film itself without giving too much away.
This is an origin story made on a shoestring budget of $2 million… and boy does it show. It has a lot in common with the 60s television series from which I took the title of this post. It also reminds me of another theatrical release of the early 80s: Flash Gordon. The movie depicts the events in which Dr. Reed Richards, siblings Sue and Johnny Storm, and pilot Ben Grimm all become the super-powered humans they have come to be known. As well as the creation of the evil Dr. Doom. Plus, we are introduced to another key element in the comic legend, Alicia Masters.
I had heard of this extremely rare version when the big budget feature was released a few years ago. However, I had no idea that I would some day get to see it. It is pure camp made for what in Hollywood terms is peanuts. But for what it is, it is a lot of fun. Good for an evening of B-movie entertainment. Plus in a survey it ranked higher than some other not so worthy superhero movies (Batman & Robin for one).