It all began in 2013 with the latest incarnation of Superman in Man of Steel. Fans knew from then on that this could finally be the start of a cinematic universe for Warner Bros and DC Comics. Truly, that has been the case when the studio loosely brought Frank Miller’s infamous comic The Dark Knight Returns to life in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. It introduced us to Ben Affleck’s Batman and Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman. It has been a long journey for fans before they finally got what they have been asking for since the beginning, Justice League!
A few years after the aftermath of Doomsday in BvS, Bruce Wayne and Diana Prince are all that’s left to protect the world against an impending threat. They knew that their combined skills are not enough which is why they both set out to recruit other super-powered individuals against Steppenwolf.
Clocking in at more than 2 hours, watching the film felt like watching 3 films altogether. The recruitment part took most of the running time. This is a reasonable move as most of the new members have never been featured before nor starred in their own movie. With Cyborg, Aquaman, and The Flash onboard, fans couldn’t help but expect unstoppable action sequences. Well, don’t expect too much.
Steppenwolf and the series of lame villains
In the comics, Steppenwolf is one powerful and smart villain to our superheroes but something may have been lost in translation in the film. True enough, it left lots of fans disappointed. The character’s motivation in the film is merely existent- aside from obtaining three Motherboxes hidden in Earth. As expected, he formed the Unity but did it pose any threat to humanity? Barely.
At this point, I started wondering whether the filmmakers were trying to hold back on action and decided to save it all for the sequel. Either that’s the case or the villain was just poorly written.
Justice League is not quite a movie.
Comparing the film to the rest of the movies in its existing universe, Justice League is not bad. It may not be as solid as Wonder Woman or Man of Steel but at least, it is not as forgettable as Suicide Squad.
If there is any redeeming factor about the film, it’s the new characters. Ezra Miller and Jason Momoa are perfect for their roles, The Flash and Aquaman, respectively. They provided the film’s much-needed levity. Also, part of what made them work was that the story gave each hero a moment to shine.
Is Justice League even comparable to Marvel’s The Avengers? Somehow, yes. It shows that DC/WB could still make it work in establishing their cinematic universe. The movie had a potential to be great. It’s a shame because the third act felt rushed. It’s almost the first part of two Justice League movies is not quite a movie.