Saturday, March 1, 2014

Justice League: War Review

Justice League: War Review
Over the course of this blog, I have always discussed my preference for DC Comics animation over their live-action films overall. I have often questioned why the crews used for their animation films don't help in some aspect to their live-action films. Sure, DC is on a huge stride right now with "Man of Steel" and Christopher Nolan's Batman series, but the stride ends there. Overall, DC has been manhandled by Marvel as far as live-action film success goes. But for some reason, the DC animation films are almost always gold.

Almost always.

With all that said about the awesome of their animation department, I feel like "Justice League: War" is a titanic step backwards. There is a reason why so many people are raging against "Batman vs. Superman," it feels entirely too early to introduce Batman into the "Man of Steel" universe. Add Wonder Woman, Flash and the other DC characters into the mix and things get overly-complicated. We have barely met Superman as a character and now the studio wants the entire universe onscreen? Its a drastic move, one that could blow up in their face. Some call it "copying off Marvel," after seeing "Justice League: War" its hard not think that is exactly what DC is doing. The whole film's premise revolves around DC big bad Darkseid and his need to invade Earth. So a group of unlikely heroes come together to stop him. The team doesn't really get along at first, but they eventually prevail. The means by which Darkseid chooses to invade Earth screams 2012 Avengers, and how the studio isn't getting sued currently is a blessing.

Not only that, but the whole movie is pretty boring. The entire movie is just one huge build-up to when all these superheroes fight Darkseid as a team. First we see Green Lantern and Batman together, then move to the birth of Cyborg then more heroes meet up, then more. It was handled in such a lifeless manner that the whole film felt like a giant trailer for a different film. Not only that, but it seems director Jay Olivia had no idea what these characters mean or what makes them unique. Superman is an asshole? No. Shazam is a cougar-hunter? No. Give Wonder Woman a ridiculous scene involving ice cream? Why? It seems the only character Olivia truly understood was Batman, as he shines bright above all the rest. It also seemed that Olivia tried to make this thing too edgy and it comes off silly. Why are all of these superheroes using so many cuss words?

This is the first time DC animation didn't create a solid story. Its the first time DC animation created something so off-the-rails that I will be proactively trying to forget this one. For a studio with a great record, this was bitterly disappointing. With a cast that is once again filled with great actors (Sean Astin, Michelle Monaghan and Alan Tudyk just name a few), this should have been another cartoon movie to rave about. Sadly, it seems like DC has to go back to drawing board.

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