We all know DC’s cinematic track record isn’t the greatest, and it doesn’t get any easier with Marvel showing no sign of slowing down. Have you seen Thor: Ragnarok?! Fortunately for DC Comics, they struck gold when Wonder Women made cinematic history, becoming the highest-grossing superhero origin movie of all-time. It became clear that DC wasn’t going down without a fight and after seeing Justice League, DC might just have been playing rope-a-dope all along. Avengers is still the better of the super group movies, but Justice League definitely closed the gap, which is a step in the right direction.
The first act began just as you’d imagine – Superman’s death has everyone grieving and Batman is forced to assemble a team of heroes, a.k.a. the Justice League. Before long, Aquaman, Flash and Cyborg have joined Batman and Wonder Women in an effort to prevent Steppenwolf, the destroyer of worlds from, well… destroying the world.
When I found out that Ezra Miller was going to be playing Barry Allen (The Flash), I was adamant that he was the wrong choice (despite being a fan of Miller’s work). While he may never read this, I’d like to sincerely apologize. I couldn’t have been more wrong. While I think Wonder Women (Gal Gadot) may have shined the brightest, the Flash was a close second. Miller defiantly played homage to the source material, portraying Barry Allen as the intelligent, curious and wise-cracking superhero that he is. It’s the kind of performance that’s going to have kids everywhere falling in love with the Scarlet Speedster.
Which brings me to Aquaman, a performance that will have most women falling in love with Jason Momoa… if they hadn’t already. All jokes aside, Momoa’s performance wasn’t just about introducing Arthur Curry to the masses, it was about making people realize how awesome “The King of the Seven Seas” actually is. He can do a lot more than just talk to fish! Much like Chris Hemsworth did with Thor, Momoa genuinely made me believe he was actually Arthur Curry and a legitimate force of a superhero. That bodes well for the upcoming Aquaman movie set to release in December 2018.
I also can’t say enough about Ray Fisher’s performance as the newcomer Cyborg — he really did his homework. Cyborg is a relatively new addition to the Justice League, as he’s often associated with the Teen Titans cartoon rather than a big gritty blockbuster film. Considering Cyborg is practically 90 percent CGI, I was impressed by the level of emotion Fisher achieved. You could feel the resentment and pain in his voice, still learning to control his biomechatronic body. I thought director Zack Synder did an excellent job explaining Victor Stone’s motivation for joining the Justice League. Much like Aquaman and Flash, Cyborg is another win for DC. With no solo movie on the slate just yet, it wouldn’t surprise me if Fisher reprises his role as Victor Stone in more of DC’s upcoming films.
Wonder Woman. In my opinion, Gal Gadot can do no wrong. She continues to outshines both Batman (Ben Affleck) and Supes (Henry Cavill) on a regular basis. She plays Diana Prince with such a level of confidence, it makes for a memorable performance every time she’s involved. All I want to know now is when Wonder Women 2 is coming out?
This is going to ruffle a few feathers and it surprises even me, but Ben Affleck is without question the greatest Batman and Bruce Wayne of all-time. I used to be a Keaton guy, but Affleck’s won me over. He does an incredible job portraying Bruce’s lighter side, but most of all, Justice League showed a more vulnerable Batman, one dealing with the guilt of Superman’s death and his own immortality. It really is a Batman like we’ve never seen before.
It shouldn’t come as much surprise that Superman is in Justice League, and while I won’t spoil that moment for you, I will say that I thought this was Henry Cavill’s best Superman performance yet. He seems to have really connected with character, but I don’t want to say much more. My lips are sealed.
In my personal opinion, I thought Justice League did a wonderful job of honouring the source material and introducing a team of heroes that almost rivals the on-screen chemistry of Marvel’s Avengers. I mean, the story wasn’t perfect, but it was light-years better than Batman v Superman. A large part of that has to do with Justice League’s major villain. Ciaran Hinds did an outstanding job bringing Steppenwolf to life. The ancient god’s shear size and power was amazing, it made for plenty of entertaining fight sequences.
I did think that some aspects could have been left out (any scene with Amy Adams – sorry), but overall the film was entertaining, surprisingly funny, and played homage to the comics, which I loved. It couldn’t have been easy to switch directors part way through either, but Joss Whedon did an excellent job finishing up Zack Snyder tremendous work. At the end of the day, Justice League won’t take home any Movie of the Year awards, but it’s much better than I could have hoped.
Also, while it’s becoming somewhat routine, be sure to stay past the credits, DC basically drops the mic on two separate occasions.