• 13 Mar - 19 Mar, 2021
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Reviews

In Archenemy, Joe Manganiello who plays that man, who calls himself Max Fist and claims to be a hero who got stuck on our Earth after saving all life in some other dimension; that claim's truth may or may not matter to the aspiring blogger (Skylan Brooks) who wants to ride Fist's boasts to viral fame.

Brooks plays a young man who calls himself Hamster – a self-proclaimed storyteller in search of an audience. He charms his way into a tryout gig for a hipster new-media outlet called Trendible. But his first attempts to document street life upset his sister Indigo (Zolee Griggs), a drug dealer who entered the game hoping to get Hamster into college and out of the hood.

The movie tells of a planet called Chromium, which was threatened by a supervillain named Cleo until Fist destroyed Cleo's planet-destroying weapon but, in doing so, was ejected from his dimension. Powerless on our plane, he lives on the street and spends a lot of time telling strangers in dive bars about his exploits.

Speaking in a growl that makes Christian Bale's Batman sound sheepish, Manganiello stumbles and slurs and digs discarded french fries out of trash cans. His rolling-in-the-gutter Fist is magnetic to Hamster, who first encounters the big lug as he's punching the hell out of a brick wall in an alley. He may or may not believe the stories Fist starts spewing, but he laps them up eagerly and shoots videos of his violent outbursts, calling them "splashworthy." He's pretty sure he can milk this loon for a full-time gig at Trendible, and his editor agrees.

So far so good. When Indigo and Hamster find themselves on the Manager's bad side, they have little choice but to believe in Fist, accepting his offer to go to war on the gangster.

But the final act, which leads our heroes to a mysterious woman played by a nearly unrecognisable Amy Seimetz, doesn't quite pay off in either action terms or mystery-solving ones. Some questions get answered, but not in very satisfying ways, and a promise of future action introduces yet another vibe to the already cluttered scenario. In Max's defense, maybe things sync up better in one of the other 11 dimensions he has navigated in his day.