The origin story of Morbius

By Nirupa Mohan Dore | Published: 2:00 AM Apr 9 2022
Teen inc The origin story of Morbius

By Nirupa Mohan Dore

Morbius, the newest action-adventure film based on Marvel Comics, released recently, with the tagline ‘The line between hero and villain will be broken.’ The much-awaited instalment comes as the third film as part of Sony’s Spider-Man Universe (SSU) and focuses on the origin story of its title character, Michael Morbius, played by Jared Leto.

The film also stars Adria Arjona as Martine Bancroft, Matt Smith as Loxias Crown (Milo Morbius), Tyese Gibson as Simon Stroud, Jared Harris as Dr. Emil Nicholas, Charlie Shotwell as Young Michael, Archie Renaux as Bobby.

The American superhero film follows Dr. Michael Morbius, as he tries to find a cure for a rare blood disease, which he has had all his life. After years of research as a leading biochemist, he is shown to have discovered an experimental treatment. The core story begins when things take an unexpected turn, with his experiment, turning him into something he never imagined. 

The story about the Marvel legend, takes viewers on a journey with Morbius, as he navigates through the challenges he is faced with. To make things worse, Milo, a boy who grew up with the same rare blood disease, who Michael thinks of as a brother, also becomes part of the problem, as he makes bad choices and makes things more dangerous for everyone involved. The violence infused action-drama has a strong sense of desperation along the way, with a body count of random casualties.

The story of Morbius, the living vampire, was first seen in The Amazing Spider-Man #101 (1971), as a fictional character, who was seen as an enemy of Spider-Man, originally created by writer Roy Thomas, together with designer Penciler Gil Kane, and was published in Marvel comics. Since then, the character has appeared in countless television, film, video game, and in newspaper strips.

The 104-minute film by director Daniel Espinosa, was produced by Matt Tolmach, Avi Arad, and Lucas Foster, working in collaboration with production companies Columbia Pictures, Marvel Entertainment, Matt Tolmach Productions and Arad Productions. Made with a budget of US$75 million, the film was initially scheduled for release in July 2020, but was postponed several times, mostly due to the pandemic, and is now making its way to cinemas around the world. 

Morbius raked in just over 17 million at the worldwide box-office, amid mixed to negative critic, with some calling the film dated and uninspired, while others appreciated the lead Leto’s performance. The film has been plagued by low to moderate ratings, with only 17 per cent featured on Rotten Tomatoes, 4.8/10 on IMDb and a moderate 5/10 on IGN.

Morbius starts strong with a clear backstory, and maintains steady pacing, as the story unfolds, taking the time to give viewers a vague scientific explanation of how his scientific research findings are possible. While delivering an entertaining film that features a skilled cast of lead actors who portray their individual characters very well, but with a plot that seems to build the lead’s character as a flawed superhero, it feels like the film’s aim is to set the stage as an origin story, in the hope of having a bigger sequel. 

This is a film that some will appreciate for its attention to detail, in introducing Morbius to a new audience, though for those who wanted more, it doesn’t deliver depth in its plot, but is still a must watch, given that there is more to come as part of Sony’s Spider-Man Universe.

By Nirupa Mohan Dore | Published: 2:00 AM Apr 9 2022

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