"Chronicle" had an awesome weekend. That's good news. The found-footage superhero flick is one of the coolest movies to arrive in the admittedly brief 2012 season thus far (check out our "Chronicle" review for reasons why we loved the movie), and any and all success is more than deserved in our eyes.
But there's another reason why I'm pumped that "Chronicle" did so well at the box office this weekend: it further cements the argument that director Josh Trank is the right guy for the "Fantastic Four" reboot. He's already allegedly Fox's first choice for the franchise overhaul, and I'm convinced he's the right choice. Some reasons why after the jump.
Money Money Money
The obvious one up front: "Chronicle" did business. The film's $22 million haul is almost double its $12 million production budget, so already it's a success when it comes to dollar-signs. Sure, "Fantastic Four" would be a considerably more expensive effort than "Chronicle," but Trank proved that he can do a lot with a little.
Reviews Reviews Reviews
Money aside, "Chronicle" delivered on quality as well. The movie currently boasts an 85% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes from critics and an 82% rating from audience members. People liked what they saw. Considering the dismal reactions to Fox's "Fantastic Four" (27%) and "Rise of the Silver Surfer" (37%), this franchise needs strong reviews, badly, if it hopes to stand another shot in the critical eye. Trank has only made one movie, sure, but that one movie hit big with the right people—the same people who would be lining up for Marvel's First Family's grand return.
Power Power Power
So, business and reviews aside, what makes Trank a fit for the Richards clan? For one, Trank gets power. "Chronicle" handled superpower discovery with an expert blend of imagination, joy and devastation, a wide array of emotions and responses seen in Reed, Sue, Johnny and Ben's own original transformations. If the "Fantastic Four" reboot goes back to square one with an origin story — and I'm betting that's what we're in store for — then Trank has certainly proven his ability to tell an origin with chaotic creativity rarely seen in other superhero films.
Storm Storm Storm
Another reason why "Chronicle" works so well: the kids. Trank gets youth culture because he's a young guy himself—only 25 years old. That know-how would prove especially useful for Johnny Storm, the Four's literal hothead. Chris Evans as Torch is a tough act to follow, and it'll take the right combination of actor, writer and director to top him. Trank is more than qualified for one piece of that equation: his Human Torch would be an incredible character to watch.
Bad Bad Bad
Trank also knows how to craft a compelling villain. Credit where it's due: Max Landis wrote a great script and Dane DeHaan turned in an awesome performance. But Trank's pacing of Andrew's transformation from tortured nerd to destructive menace was spot-on, resulting in a villain who you'll root for in one moment and root against in the next. I imagine (and hope) the filmmaker's take on the Fantastic Four's latest nemesis would be a bit less angsty, but no less complicated. Plus, refer back to Trank's imaginative interpretation of superpowers: can you imagine him bringing the Skrulls to the screen? Because holy wow, that would really be fantastic.
Do you think Trank would be a good fit for "Fantastic Four"? Let us know in the comments and on Twitter!