Sunday, July 19, 2015

ANI-MOVIES, *Justice League: War

The first of what was DC Comics' New 52 lineup of their DC Universe made-for-video animated flicks, Justice League: War is based on the first few issues of the current Justice League comic book series taking place after the reboot movie, Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox where Flash ended up restarting the entire timeline. Jay Olivia continues from Flashpoint as director of this new line-up, plus an entirely new voice cast at the JLA.

Mysterious kidnappings have been happening all over America, particularly in Gotham, where Green Lantern Hal Jordan tracks down a certain cape-wearing menace. It turns out to be an alien monster called a Parademon, so Lantern and Batman team up to stop him, although it commits suicide to cover its tracks. Batman figures out its alien origins, so he and Lantern fly to Metropolis to confer with its resident alien, Superman. The Man of Steel doesn't take their interrogation well at first, which ends in the usual "superhero vs. superhero" resolution. Meanwhile, more Parademons start springing up all over, with Wonder Woman saving the President from an attack on Air Force One, and the Flash arriving at S.T.A.R. Labs to witness the origin of Cyborg, a high school football player whose body was mangled after a Parademon portal exploded in his face. Cyborg is surprised to discover the hero Shazam knows him, and it turns out that this version of Captain Marvel is really a young boy. The Parademons are being lead by the tyrannical god, Darkseid, who in this timeline is at least about a yard taller than before. His forces capture Superman and take him back to be converted into one of their soldiers, with Batman going to rescue him. The remaining heroes assemble and proceed to take out each of Darkseid's eyes which shoot menacing Omega Beams. After Batman brings back Superman, Cyborg hacks into one of Darkseid's computers to reroute all his forces back home, along with the now eyeless Darkseid. The heroes from this point pledge to the U.S. government to work together as a team to defend the world from other various threats, one of which appears in a post-credits scene with Ocean Master vowing vengeance against the surface world for the death of his father.

JL: War has up until this point one of the first real times we see the League getting together for the first time, not like in New Frontier which was more an assembling of Earth's forces against a similar threat. The versions of some of the characters like Batman and Flash are spot-on, but these versions of Shazam, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern has them being colossally too arrogant and conceded. The new voice cast is okay, but they were smart to recast Nathan Fillion as Green Lantern in the sequal, Justice League: Thrown Of Atlantis. It's also plain to see that DC wanted to capitalize on the success of the original Avengers movie showing several heroes uniting to confront an alien menace, but the addition of Darkseid as the big bad made it a lot more epic in scale. For reals check this out if you want to see what the Dawn Of Justice movie is leading up to.

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