Max Steel

Max Steel (2016), Rated PG-13 movie posterMax Steel (2016), Rated PG-13
Directed by: Stewart Hendler
Starring: Ben Winchell, Maria Bello, Ana Villafañe, Josh Brener, Andy García
Rating two and a half stars
Reviewed by Xavier Emaka

This one barely made a blip on the radar, but that was mostly marketing’s fault. Max Steel was released with barely a whisper, as if it had offended the top brass. Its showing in most cinemas was less than a week.

With that in mind, it was cursed to fail and worse movies than it have recorded better sales figures, Transformers 4 comes to mind. The weak budget meant that the director was seriously limited and I hope he gets a second chance.

Max Steel starts with Max McGrath just having transferred to a new town where apparently his father is a well-known scientist. Everyone, from his teachers to family friends speaks very highly of him. As Max adjusts to his new school, his body starts undergoing a series of changes. He dreams of energy pouring out of his body and in real life he finds strange occurrences happening when he is near electronic gadgets. His dreams become reality and he finds that he can cause some disturbances with it.

As Max tries to go on a date he nearly sets himself on fire. He wakes in his room with an alien hovering above him. The alien informs Max that he constantly overloads and needs to release the excess energy he generates. The parasitic silicon based life form going by the name of Steel then shows Max how to harness his powers to be stronger and to create a power suit that he can use in combat if all else fails.

Meanwhile, a covert groups starts to hunt Max and he ends up having to do some digging up of the past. He learns more about his father, who he worked for, and why he needs to work together with Steel to become Max Steel. His mother is hiding a lot more about his past then she cares to reveal.

The plot of the movie is not exactly ground breaking and is the biggest let down of the movie. Some of the scenes are cliche, such as Max being taught how to fight by Steel. There was definitely a lack of purpose. Steel also seems to remember everything except the most important details about his arrival at Max’s place.

The directing is good. Credit has to be given to the CGI group, they did not let this movie down. The acting is nothing memorable however. Given the young age of the lead it could be forgiven, but Mattel seemed only to care about marketing their action figure and not producing an overall good movie. Most likely they are trying to ride the superhero adaptation wave that Marvel and DC are successfully milking.

My verdict: if you’re a fan of the superhero genre then this is an origin story you would enjoy. If not, there’s nothing much you’re missing.

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