The early consensus is that “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” is “bigger” and “bolder,” but still holds tight to the heart and humor of the first film. With the origin story out of the way, the movie delves right into the action, which is balanced alongside character development for the beloved foster family. According to Geeks of Color owner Dorian Park, the sequel is even better than the original. “[‘Shazam! Fury of the Gods’] delivers on every level. The action is spectacular, the humor is on point, and the surprises will leave you wanting more.”

That excitement is echoed across the board: Fandango’s Erik Davis praised the humor and the decision to center chosen family, while Variety critic Courtney Howard dubbed the film a “super-powered sequel” with “a super solid, super fun & super smart blend of hilarity, heart & heroics.”

The film also includes many standout performances — which is no big surprise given it’s packed with immense talent. Discussing Film’s Ben Rolph points to Helen Mirren, as does Shahbaz “The Movie Podcast” host, who writes that Mirren, Lucy Liu and Rachel Zegler are “a force to be reckoned with & a joy to watch.”’s Brandon Davis hints that the sequel leans into the realm of horror, much like the first film. He notes that David F. Sandberg “sprinkles some horror elements while maintaining the childish joy & charm of the Shazamily.”

Black Girl Nerds founder Jamie Broadnax adds, “Shazam continues to lean into his silliness and immaturity in this sequel which tells us this franchise will remain to keep these films funny, light and slapstick-ish. “