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Movie Review: Justice League War (2014) *Some Spoilers*

I caught Justice League War by Warner Animation on Netflix thinking, finally some new DC animation to watch. I do own a few DC Warner Animation titles and usually they're quite good.

This is the first title I've seen that's based off the New 52 comic book run that reset everything in the DC comic universe. If this is any kind of typical example of the new story lines, I'm really glad I don't waste my money on comics.



Justice League War serves as an origin story for the new Justice League. Our heroes, reluctantly unite when Darkseid invades the Earth. That's really all you need to know plot wise.

Within this story we have one of the dumbest Wonder Womans I have ever seen. The film establishes that she has been around long enough as a superhero for people to protest the damage her battles have done to the city, yet she is unaware that a protest is about her despite all the protesters holding placards with her logo.

One protester even has an effigy of her in a noose which she has to see before she clues in to what's going on. She then proceeds to humiliate the protester with her lasso of truth.

That may not seem much but she also seems unfamiliar with the idea of what a President is and has never tasted ice-cream. She basically holds up an ice-cream vendor at sword point and steals two ice-creams from him. To top all that off her whole mindset appears to be that of a warrior who should be charging into battle rather than be any kind of a peacemaker who uses intelligence over brute force.

`The rest of the team don't fair much better. It's almost as if everyone has been dumbed down to make Batman appear smarter. What's more jarring though is that, until they actually meet, none of them seem barely aware of each other's existence, despite all of them clearly being shown to have been operating individually for a while.

When Green Lantern and Batman meet they seem to know the bare minimum about each other i.e. they've at least heard of each other. Even though they're fighting a common enemy when they first meet they end up going head to head because Green Lantern thinks Batman is a liability.

Next they seek out Superman, for no good reason but probably to ask about the alien tech they've discovered, but proceed to try to take him down before so much as speaking a single word to him.

After another pointless fight, they decide to work together because they kind of have to since their piece of alien tech decided to fire up and cause a scene.

Then there's a totally by chance meeting between Shazam and Cyborg's alter egos that serves no real purpose... and how Cyborg becomes Cyborg is somewhat unlikely but he deals with it relatively well, working out his abilities within hours of his transformation.

Going back to Green Lantern for a moment... given all the flack Ryan Reynold's Green Lantern got for his lack of imagination with the ring, the Green Lantern in this animation is equally unimaginative. If that's typical of Green Lantern in the comics then it's no wonder Ryan's Green Lantern tanked. It was too faithful to the comics.

As a team, this Justice League is ineffective for much of the movie. Even after they've worked out that team work is the only way to defeat Darkseid they continue to attack him one at a time and get hammered for it.

Other negatives to note; Superman kills one foe, and seems unconcerned about causing Man of Steel like destruction to the city as he fights. He's also a bit of an a-hole to Green Lantern and Batman when they first meet (partly Green Lantern's fault though).

Cyborg's Dad is a dick and Cyborg is a whiney man child who blames his dad for turning him into an experiment, even though his predicament was entirely his own doing - yeah, don't just grab the science experiment being worked on in a lab kids... it might turn you into a superhero that finally gets you your Dad's approval.

Apparently seven superheroes in Metropolis can save the world even though the events they are battling are also occurring in other locations around the world (or so the Flash said).

This isn't a great film in terms of script. It could have been. The artwork is pretty cool. The voice cast is great. Everyone suits their role and acts their part well. It's just unforgivable that Wonder Woman comes across as quite naive and gung-ho at this point, and the rest of the team, other than Batman, seem very immature.

Batman, and maybe the Flash are the only two characters that are really presented as you would imagine them to be. Shazam is pretty close too but not so much his alter-ego, who I wouldn't have thought would be a streetwise thief.

Worth watching if you like seeing superheroes fight each other, or you're a fan of Darkseid perhaps.

I'd say it's probably a movie that'll please younger viewers a lot more except it does have a few curse words here and there (I'm pretty sure I heard Cyborg say 'shit' and I think even Superman said something not so kid friendly).

It's not a film that I'd rewatch or want to own though. There are definitely better DC, Warner Animation movies out there, pre New 52. Hopefully future, post New 52 movies treat the characters with (and gives them) a little more intelligence.


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