Theres as much that goes Kersplat! as Kapow! in Justice League.
If the superhero team-up flick is meant to catch the DC Cinematic Universe up to arch-rival Marvel, which has enjoyed a huge head-start in a crowded genre, then director Zack Snyder and sidekick Joss Whedon have only partially succeeded.
Geeks finally get their first chance to see Batman (Ben Affleck) and Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) get busy on screen Friday with other iconic super heroes from the venerable comic publisher.
But unlike the first Avengers, which came after solo Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and Hulk movies, fans had almost no chance to get to know or care about most of these Justice Leaguers before this installment.
Gal Gadot didnt say she’d quit Wonder Woman over Brett Ratner
Moviegoers are introduced to the likes of the promising Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and the brooding Cyborg (Ray Fisher) too quickly and briefly. The same goes for fleeting cameos last year in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Ezra Millers bumbling version of the Flash is far inferior to the version fans can see on TV every Tuesday night.
So, its up to Wonder Woman again to save the day. And Gadots Amazon warrior does just that in every scene she steals as the conscience and muscle of the group. The biggest surprise though is that Affleck has found his Bat-groove after the disappointing Batman v. Superman by adding a dollop of humor and charisma to his gruff portrayal. But dont get attached. Hes already being phased out of a shared cinematic universe that’s short on continuity.
The supporting cast may not be super-powered, but the formidable Amy Adams and J.K. Simmons help ground the film.
The most dastardly aspect surrounding the movies central villain, Steppenwolf, is that Ciarn Hinds, the brilliant actor who plays the would-be world conqueror, is rendered unrecognizable. Bland, too, under all those layers of CGI.
‘Justice League’ reshoots, Superman mustache removal to cost $25M
Justice League manages to have moments of fun, perhaps buoyed by one of the best dialogue writers in the genre Whedon, who took over reshoots and post-production after Snyder stepped down to deal with a family tragedy.
Fans of Snyders patented slow-motion action sequences shouldnt fret, there are plenty of those, too.
There are enough positives that Justice League shouldn’t be dismissed as Flash over substance. Its just that with the rich history of these iconic heroes on the printed page, the film should have felt more super.