BFFs in a Couple Of Movies

MORBIUS (2022) stars Jared Leto as Marvel’s “Living Vampire,” a scientist whose radical experiments to cure himself and BFF Milo (Matt Smith) of a disabling blood disease has a few side effects such as turning them into vampires when they don’t get enough synthetic blood and apparently giving Morbius the power to command vampire bats (the cure was somehow based on vampire bats, which was not the case in the MU). Worse, Milo relishes his new power and sets out to recruit the more ethical Morbius to prey upon humanity rather help it.

As Camestros Felapton says, this would have been a lot better if the guys had switched roles. Smith embraces the melodramatic absurdity while Leto approaches it as if he were in a serious scientific drama like Dr. Ehrlich’s Magic Bullet. That was a bad choice by Leto. There are other problems, such as Morbius not even trying to use a blood bank as an alternative to people, but a big one for me is that vampires are simply too common now for this to have any interest: Milo and Morbius might as well be Lacroix and Nicholas from Forever Knight. Tyrese Gibson plays Simon Stroud, a character from the original Bronze Age series, but he’s no more interesting here. Michael Keaton appears at the end in some seeding for a sequel (if one occurs).  “I am reborn — I am the resurrection.”

The buddies in LET’S SWITCH (1975) are magazine editor Barbara Feldon and suburban housewife Barbara Eden, who in frustration at their lives decide to switch places for a week while their respective boyfriend and husband are out of town. They assume this will be a cakewalk — Eden’s had some journalism training and Feldon being a housewife can’t be that hard — but of course everything goes horribly wrong, leaving them happy to switch back. Much as I like both leads, this is bland and unsatisfying, and surprisingly doesn’t fix any of the problems they’ve caused for each other. With Penny Marshall as Feldon’s dour assistant and Dick Schaal as her artist boyfriend. “I’m going to tell you something only a few close friends and the DA know.”

#SFWApro. All rights to Gil Kane cover remain with current holder.

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