With the success of Wonder Woman this year, it seemed like Warner Bros could finally take a breather as their struggling DC cinematic universe seemed to be on track. However, it might have been too early to celebrate as Justice League seems to be as controversial as last year’s Batman Vs Superman: Dawn Of Justice. It is hard not to compare the film to the Marvel films, but not only did this disappoint as a film, it also underperformed at the box office. Could this be a sign that the superhero fatigue is beginning to kick in, or is it simply that audiences are not willing to waste money on films that receive less than inspiring reviews?
With the devastating family tragedy that caused original director Zach Snyder to leave the project, Joss Whedon stepped in to finish the film, reportedly having to reshoot a large portion of the film. My main criticism for the film is that it is boring, in a film bringing together some of the most famous superheroes, you would hope they would be able to keep your attention for at least two hours. It is clear that executives wanted to harness the popularity of Gal Gadot‘s Wonder Woman, re-shaping parts of the story to increase her presence. My favourite scene of the film included Wonder Woman preventing the bomb detonation, the use of slow motion during her action scenes make a great signature for the character.
With the massive cultural importance that Wonder Woman brought, especially for women on film, it is disappointing to see how the Amazonian warriors were represented. The film also struggled with its villain Steppenwolf, with the film taking a large amount of time to bring together the team, it seems like the villain was a bit of an afterthought. I also wasn’t that impressed with the expected return of Henry Cavill as Superman, another story that felt rushed, I would have much preferred that this happened in the next film and we got the opportunity to delve deeper into this storyline. Possibly the biggest miss-fire for me was the casting of Ray Fisher as Cyborg, I felt like the character was underdeveloped and poorly represented, Fisher’s delivery was stale and contributed to the boring tone of the film. Without much chance for character development, the Justice League felt more like a group of people put together than an actual team.
Although the film was very disappointing, I am not giving up on the DC Universe just yet. There were enough elements that give promise for a revival of the franchise. The introduction of both Aquaman and The Flash played by Jason Momoa and Ezra Miller respectively. The next film in the universe will be Aquaman, that will truly be DC’s last chance to get this franchise right, hopefully, they can repeat Patty Jenkin‘s success with Wonder Woman. With the rumours seeming true that Ben Affleck is desperate to leave the franchise, we may have to wait until 2020’s Flashpoint film that could relaunch the franchise with a new cast and a different direction.
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