‘Jus­tice League’ fans talk of hopes and ex­pec­ta­tions

Manila Times - - ENTERTAINMENT - FAN GIRL KAREN KUNAWICZ The Jus­tice League movie opens on Fri­day, Novem­ber 17 in the Philip­pines, with 12:01 am screen­ings in se­lect cin­e­mas.

WAITED 44 years for a “Jus­tice League” movie. I con­sider my­self lucky this is hap­pen­ing in my life­time.

When I watched “Bat­man vs. Su­per­man,” the mo­ment the three (Bat­man, Su­per­man and Won­der Woman) were on the screen at the same time, and I could have s**t my pants right there. That mo­ment sur­passed ev­ery “Avengers” movie I’ve seen. I didn’t care if the story was shaky or what­ever. Af­ter I watched “Won­der Woman,” I was le­git cry­ing. No Man’s Land was one of the best se­quences in su­per­hero film his­tory. That’s what we’ve been wait­ing for.

That’s my friend Ken­sei Yon­zon—one of the big­gest DC fans I know. I’m at the Bunny Baker, a cafe he runs with his wife and I’m wait­ing for two oth­ers: Glen­marc “Flash” An­to­nio and film­maker and con or­ga­nizer, Adrian Arcega so we all could talk DC.

Glen­marc has been busy suit­ing up as Flash and do­ing lots of event co­or­di­na­tion with his bud­dies at Jus­tice Ph for a se­ries of “Unite the Fans” week­ends, which took place at the Glo­ri­etta, TriNoMa and Sole­nad malls. They’re a se­ries of events for the fans and by fans—with toys, cos­tumes, cos­play, multi me­dia art ex­hibits, mer­chan­dise on sale, fan fo­rums and a VR ex­pe­ri­ence de­voted to Jus­tice League and DC heroes. Tonight and to­mor­row, he’ll be busy suit­ing up for the JL ad­vance screen­ings.

I’m a Marvel girl (Rocket Rac­coon and Jes­sica Jones are my fa­vorites). I want to into their mind­set to find out how they feel on the eve of the Jus­tice League re­lease. Here are some of the key points they brought up:

• Su­per­man is pos­i­tive, happy and hope­ful.” Su­per­man also does not kill. The Su­per­man Zack Sny­der left us with in Man of Steel was more or less based on the Su­per­man we find in the ‘In­jus­tice’ se­ries—he is bro­ken, heavy, and full of angst. That is es­sen­tially not the Su­per­man au­di­ences have em­braced.

• DC Heroes are larger than life, they have such strong iconog­ra­phy, they’re al­most god-like, and at their best, they are ca­pa­ble of be­ing in­cred­i­bly in­spir­ing. “You em­u­late Su­per­man, not be­cause of his power… but be­cause of his hero­ism, he in­spires you be the best ver­sion of your­self,” said Ken­sei.

• The boys are unan­i­mous in their love for Won­der Woman. Flash noted, “When you leave the cinema, you want this in­stant re­ac­tion that makes you feel ca­pa­ble of hero­ism, like you want to help other peo­ple.” Won­der Woman did that for him. Adrian agreed, “When I left Won­der Woman I thought, shouldn’t Su­per­man have this mes­sage of hope? Af­ter that fa­mous No Man’s Land se­quence he heard peo­ple in the au­di­ence say, cool ( Wouldn’t it be cool if she were in Marawi now?”) For Ken­sei, “My chil­dren, my daugh­ters, felt like they could take on the world af­ter watch­ing Won­der Woman.”

Warner is a stu­dio that re­lies on au­thors vs. the tem­plate/for­mula style of film­mak­ing Dis­ney/Marvel comes up with. Warner has trusted the likes of Tim Bur­ton (late ‘80s, early ‘90s Bat­man), Christo­pher Nolan (Chris­tian Bale Bat­man), Patty Jenk­ins ( Won­der Woman), Guillermo del Toro (Pa­cific Rim), James Wan (The Con­jur­ing) and Andres Muschi­etti (It) with their prop­er­ties. Those are the suc­cess­ful ones of course. This has also been a risk as some­times the artist’s vi­sion falls short of the de­mands of the prop­erty and what the au­di­ences want to see.

It’s no se­cret af­ter “Man of Steel,” “Bat­man vs. Su­per­man” and “Sui­cide Squad,” the DC cin­e­matic uni­verse has had to do some course cor­rec­tion. While the films made money, au­di­ences and fans were not to­tally happy with what they saw. Crit­ics were even more un­der­whelmed.

Joss Whe­don has had to take over the com­ple­tion of “Jus­tice League” from Zack Sny­der. Early whis­pers from pre­views say fans can spot which parts were Sny­der’s and which ones were Whe­don’s. The plot and the CGI are still a bit un­even but Ezra Miller is sup­pos­edly the stand­out. Henry Cav­ill’s mus­tache from Mis­sion Im­pos­si­ble was still be­ing ren­dered out.

Will the Su­per­man that emerges in Jus­tice League now be em­braced by the fans? Also, will Ben Af­fleck con­tinue as Bat­man? Will this put these beloved heroes on their “right” track?

Just how happy will this make the fans, crit­ics, box of­fice and stu­dio ex­ec­u­tives? We’ll find out soon.

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