No Lightning Strikes in Thunder Force

The Stream: Another McCarthy/Falcone film with the same formula.

The Big Screen: Middle-aged ladies kicking butt and making jokes.

The Final Bill: A nice, unnecessary action-comedy that’s just alright.

– Trip Fontaine
Director: Ben Falcone
Writers: Ben Falcone
Stars: Melissa McCarthyOctavia SpencerJason Bateman | See full cast & crew »
Genre: ActionAdventureComedy
Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 1 hour 41 minutes
Production Companies: Marc Platt Productions, Netflix
Platform: Netflix- April 9, 2021

Okay, Streamers, I accidentally watched another female-led superhero flick this weekend instead of that anticipated one from the MCU. Yes, I watched Thunder Force starring Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer, which was released on Netflix back in April. It’s a nice, family-oriented action-comedy set in a world where supervillains called Miscreants run rampant. McCarthy and Spencer play estranged best friends, who reconnect in the midst of Spencer’s character developing a treatment that provides superpowers to counter the evil Miscreants in order to avenger her parents’ deaths.

A new movie starring Melissa McCarthy and directed by Ben Falcone seems to come out every six months (Superintelligence was released on HBOMax in November 2020). She typically plays the main protagonist, who is an unhinged mess with a heart of gold. Usually, there is a more grounded foil to McCarthy’s character, who puts up with her antics and builds a friendship despite all of the mess. Thunder Force follows that formula to the letter except there is the superhero twist this time. In that sense, there’s really nothing to see here – the only additional development is that there are two middle aged women kicking butt, which is nice. They have some fun with that, but it’s not something that’s acknowledged much. Octavia Spencer does her best to keep up with McCarthy’s high-wire comedy. Sandra Bullock was a better match to McCarthy in The Heat. I did like seeing Spencer in this mode even though it is not a natural fit – Ma was a better departure for her. I’ll also mention that Jason Bateman has some very funny moments throughout.


S2S: Official Rating Scale

If you’ve seen one McCarthy/Falcone movie, you’ve seen them all and if you like them, then you may like this. Thunder Force is nice, inoffensive and has some funny moments, but there isn’t anything special here. I’d say play it in the background if you are bored with just a handful of popcorn.