Blue Beetle – Movie Review

Blue Beetle unleashing the scarab in the first “DCU” film.

Blue Beetle shooting out with big hand gun.

Warner Bros. Pictures presents a fresh take on the comic book genre with “Blue Beetle.” It is a film that brings DC’s beloved hero to the big screen for the first time. Ángel Manuel Soto directs the movie, which offers a classic hero’s origin story wrapped in the vibrant tapestry of genuine Latin culture. Xolo Maridueña, known for his role in “Cobra Kai,” seamlessly transitions his star power to his superhero debut. He delivers a performance that breathes life into the titular character.

The heart of “Blue Beetle” lies in its alluring narrative. It follows recent college graduate Jaime Reyes as he returns home to Palmera City. Bursting with dreams for the future, he is met with the harsh reality of his family’s struggles. This includes his father’s declining health and the challenges brought on by gentrification. The film carefully crafts an origin story that strikes a chord with audiences. It blends the extraordinary world of superheroes with the genuine emotional experiences of a close-knit Mexican American family.

Soto captures the essence of the source material.

He incorporates a visual tone that merges magical realism with genuine human emotion. The film’s cinematography brings Palmera City to life. It is a bustling urban landscape that feels alive, much like Metropolis and Central City. While the CGI may exhibit a touch of campiness reminiscent of 90s superhero movies, it adds to the film’s nostalgic charm and pays homage to the early Blue Beetle comics.

The standout performances of the cast elevate the film’s impact. Xolo Maridueña’s portrayal of Jaime Reyes is captivating, showcasing his range as he navigates the complexities of his new powers and responsibilities. George Lopez’s inclusion as Uncle Rudy provides comic relief and heartfelt moments, enriching the family dynamic with his charismatic presence. Every single member of the Reyes family get their moment to shine, and each has great scenes.

The film does have its moments of pacing struggles.

With a runtime of 2 hours and 7 minutes, the origin story’s buildup occasionally drags, requiring more action to maintain tension throughout. However, the payoff is worth the wait as the intense action and fight sequences, reminiscent of Blue Beetle’s epic moves in the video game “Injustice 2,” unfold on screen. One of the film’s most vital points is its ability to capture the warmth and authenticity of family bonds. Adriana Barraza shines as Nana, bringing heart and depth to her role, while Damían Alcázar’s portrayal of Jaime’s father resonates with genuine emotion. These performances intertwine to create a heartwarming depiction of familial love that audiences can connect with.


I give Blue Beetle 4 out of 5 stars. It takes a somewhat unknown superhero and infuses it with a fresh spirit. The movie embraces its Latinx identity and uses it as a foundation to tell a story that is not only a celebration of heroism but also an exploration of cultural heritage and family dynamics. Through a blend of magical realism, nostalgia, and heartfelt performances, the film introduces Jaime Reyes and his alter ego, Blue Beetle, to a new generation while staying true to the essence of the early comics. It’s an exciting step forward for the superhero genre and a testament to the power of representation in cinema.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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Sean Tajipour is the Founder and Editor of Nerdtropolis and the host of the Moviegoers Society Podcast. He is also a member of the Critics Choice Association. You can follow on Twitter and Instagram @Seantaj.

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