Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Justice League: War review



    Where Wonder Woman is a twit and the Justice League kills a lot of people.

    That's my summary of the movie.

    I'm usually quite forgiving of big dumb brainless comic book action movies. It's just I'm not quite as used to them being this dumb and this brainless. Justice League: War is a movie that can justifiably said to be little more than an excuse for its action sequences. Even Under the Red Hood, which was a movie that contained a great deal of action, managed to convey a lot more nuance and characterization than this mindless fluff.

    Except, it's offensive mindless fluff.

    The Justice League, Earth's REAL Mightiest Heroes, are gathered together to face forces which they cannot alone. To millions of children across the globe, and many more adults who were once children, they are paragons of moral virtue. Whether religious, patriotic, philosophical, or not--they helped us form our moral centers.

The art is decent but that is, literally, the only saving grace.
    What would Batman do? Well, for starters Batman doesn't kill. Batman protects the innocent. Batman wears a cool cape and uses nifty gadgets while doing so. These are not particularly deep concepts but they are enough to get your average eight-year-old thinking about right and wrong.

    Justice League: War's heroes are some of the most negative incarnations of the franchise's heroes I've seen outside of Earth-3. They're arrogant, violent, rude, quick to anger, and jerks to one another. That's not even bringing the epic number of dismemberings, bisectings, and decapitations they do against Darkseid's Parademons. Back when I was a kid, they'd have the decency to make them robots.

    Then there's how our heroes treat Darkseid. The heroes beat him within an inch of his life, blind him with metal objects, and brutalize him for twenty-minutes. Now, I'm no friend to the Lord of Apokolips but I question who is getting their money's worth by the Flash driving a crowbar into his eye. We also have Superman kill. Yes, it's under mind-control but it's a thinking (albeit evil) being.

    Batman also threatens to slit a man's throat.

    Seriously.

    Batman.

    You might say I'm spoiling the movie with this but I don't think so. Instead, I'm making a point to warn people about what sort of animated film this is. There's an alien invasion and its resolved by beating a bunch of guys for a long time. The End. Secret Origins, a Justice League cartoon with a similar premise, managed to throw in at least a passing bit of social commentary. It also showed our heroes rescuing the future Martian Manhunter from imprisonment as well as the camaraderie that would make them all friends. This Justice League flat-out hates each other.

Why guys? Why?
    Really, I can't deny it. I loathed this movie. I'm not one to protect the children--I saw more R-rated movies at age thirteen than I had any other kind of movies before. I do, however, hate when darker and edgier is confused for good. However, Justice League: War made the JLA feel like the Authority. Not the entertaining one either, more like the mean-ass caricature they later became.

    Don't watch this movie, get the original Justice League cartoon if you want to watch something decent.

0/10

2 comments:

  1. Forget it, Jake: it's Geoff Johns. He may be morphing into Mark Millar, but it's a gradual, grotesque process – like the mutations in a Cronenberg film. As the years pile-on and his stories keep on getting worse, I can see him strip them down to what I'm sure he considers their barest, boilerplate essentials. It's Producer Logic, learned at Richard Donner's feet and transferred over into a medium where it's deficits (flat characters, boring plots, empty spectacles) are even more obvious than in film, where at least all that stuff moves under its own power.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it's like make an amazing meal and then putting it into a milkshake that removes all flavor and enjoyment.

      Delete