Another week, another Netflix original. With the average and distinctly below-average features mounting up for the streaming service, Thunder Force is yet another total misstep to add to the pile. This time we see Ben Falcone writing and directing a more than underwhelming retread of the superhero genre, starring Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer as childhood friends turned superheroes. 

Thunder Force is Falcone’s fifth film as a director, all of which have starred McCarthy in a lead role. Whether all of his films feature his wife purely because he loves working with her, or if it’s simply a case of colossal nepotism, the well here has run truly dry for the pair.

While McCarthy has undoubtedly found a lot of success in brash, in-your-face comedy, Thunder Force is unfortunate proof that Falcone is nothing more than average as a comedy writer and director. This is lazy filmmaking, putting the entire weight of the film on the shoulders of McCarthy and Spencer’s chemistry, and forgoing any kind of well-crafted comedy or originality. The storyline is slapdash and, frankly, boring, with none of the jokes managing to hit the mark. 

One of the biggest surprises here is that Spencer even agreed to take part in this spectacular disaster, with her character given very little in terms of comedic material. With a cast that also includes Jason Bateman and Bobby Cannavale as the bad guys, Falcone should count his lucky stars for having talented friends, because it’s impossible to see how something as bad as Thunder Force would ever get made otherwise. 

Well and truly the definition of flogging a dead horse, the Falcone/McCarthy film series really needs to either end here or have a complete overhaul, because this is a film that fails on almost every level.



CAST:  Melissa McCarthy, Octavia Spencer, Jason Bateman, Bobby Cannavale

DIRECTOR: Ben Falcone

WRITER: Ben Falcone

SYNOPSIS: In a world where supervillains are commonplace, two estranged childhood best friends reunite after one devises a treatment that gives them powers to protect their city.