Justice League brings together most of DC’s major heroes to stop a global threat.
Pro – Getting better
Let’s be clear from the jump. Justice League is a true improvement on the mess that was Batman v. Superman. While that might seem like faint praise, it shouldn’t. DC seems to have learned their lesson and injected some badly needed levity and humor into their grim, dark universe.
The new characters Aquaman, The Flash, and Cyborg are a welcome breath of fresh air. All three of these heroes are likeable and bring something to the table, with Jason Momoa’s Aquaman getting my nod as the best of the three.
The film, wisely, gives plenty of screen time to Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman, who continues to be the best part of universe. The action is fun, and while the CGI struggles a bit at times, the superhero team-ups live up to their hype.
Con – Sins of the past
Justice League still struggles in a lot of areas. While it was fun to see the team on screen, the movie was too rushed. Most of the things I wanted to know centered on the new characters and a few minutes of exposition wasn’t enough. It was cool to see Aquaman and Wonder Woman fighting side by side, but with almost no context for the former, it didn’t transcend cool.
The film was workman-like and efficient at two hours, but the brevity meant the story felt rushed and had lots of holes. It also felt somewhat derivative, and while you might simply chalk the Marvel parts up to them doing it first, that doesn’t explain the ten minutes the movie turned into the Lord of the Rings.
The villain also was pretty flat. He was great for CGI fights, but boring and dispensable. It’s a shame too, because DC has an amazing roster of hero foils to choose from.
Neutral – Dealer’s choice
Ultimately, Justice League will be whatever you want it to. If you’re going in wanting to love it and looking for the breakout DC Universe film, there is a lot of good to point to. New, fun characters, humor, and exciting action abound. DC even got on board for post-credit scenes, and they were great.
On the other hand, if you are of the opinion that Justice League is going to be another DCU stinker, you can make the case. The plot if full of holes, the bad guy is generic and bland, and the big reveal, which literally surprises no one, is clunky and weird.
For me, I fall in the latter camp. I thought the movie was fun, but not very good. I enjoyed almost all the heroes, including Ben Affleck’s Batman, but wish I could have spent more time learning about them than on the plains of Mordor. I still don’t understand para-demons, nor why you avoid popular villains to pick an obscure one. It seems to be so that there is a villain strong enough to be a threat to these incredibly powerful heroes, and yet one of heroes just manhandles him.
Justice League is really a fun movie. There are things to love and things not to love. You likely know your opinion of the movie before you even see it.