Movie Name: Justice League: War
Studio: Warner Bros. Animation
Genre(s): Animated/Comic Book/Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Release Date(s): January 21, 2014 (Digital)/February 4, 2014 (US)
MPAA Rating: PG-13
The Earth is under siege. Darkseid is readying it for an invasion and has sent agents to prepare for his coming. Earth’s rising heroes of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Shazam, Green Lantern, and Flash must come together with a new hero known as Cyborg in the hopes of stopping Darkseid before Earth falls like other planets before it. Darkseid is all powerful but Earth’s heroes must band together as one if they hope to protect it.
Directed by Jay Oliva, Justice League: War is a DC Animated Movie Universe feature film. The movie adapts the New 52 storyline Justice League 1: Origin by Geoff Johns. The movie followed Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox in 2013 and was released for download on January 21, 2014 and available for purchase on February 4, 2014.
Despite having trouble in the theaters, DC Comics animated movies runs rings around Marvel’s animated films. With a solid animated universe constructed, DC always manages to impress. While Justice League: War isn’t the best animated film (mostly due to the source material), it does still has its moments.
I really liked Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox and looked forward to Justice League: War. Unfortunately, I wasn’t a big fan of Geoff Johns’ New 52 relaunch of the team. The movie is pretty faithful to the storyline presented in the first volume of the new Justice League series so if you are a fan of that book, you might like the film more than others.
I don’t like the modified origin of the Justice League and though Darkseid is interesting, he’s a bit too much of a heavy hitter for this entry. I would love to see some sort of New Gods standalone movie and some sort of lead up to this would have been appreciated. I don’t like the new make-up of the New Justice League and I particularly don’t like the modified Captain Marvel (he’ll never be Shazam to me).
The art for the series is good and it doesn’t pull any punches. These movies aren’t really for younger viewers which could lead to an awkward moment if a parent thought it was for kids. The movies are bloody and dangerous…and there is even swearing.
Justice League: War isn’t all it could be, but it is all it could be with the adaptation of a so-so comic. There are some many great stories available to DC to adapt with control of their characters (unlike Marvel), but they don’t always choose the best stories. I realize that they want to be topical, but adapting some classic storylines might be the key to DC’s future animated success. DC’s followed the movie up with Son of Batman in 2014 but also made a direct sequel to this story in 2015 with Justice League: Throne of Atlantis.