Su­per­heroes on full power now

Lennox Herald - - THE TICKET -

Jus­tice League (12A) We’ve seen Mar­vel’s big­gest he­roes join forces on more than one oc­ca­sion and now it’s DC’s turn for a su­per­pow­ered team-up.

Bat­man (Ben Af­fleck), Won­der Wo­man (Gal Gadot), The Flash (Ezra Miller), Aqua­man (Ja­son Mo­moa) and Cy­borg (Ray Fisher) come to­gether to de­fend Earth from in­vad­ing alien war­rior Step­pen­wolf (Ciarán Hinds).

Jus­tice League’s jour­ney to the big screen hasn’t been smooth, with di­rec­tor Zack Sny­der hav­ing to depart the project be­fore its com­ple­tion due to per­sonal is­sues and Joss Whe­don com­ing on board to re-shoot ma­te­rial.

Both Sny­der and Whe­don are given writ­ing cred­its too, along­side Bat­man v Su­per­man’s Chris Ter­rio, so the fin­ished prod­uct was al­ways likely des­tined to be un­even and flawed.

We pretty much dive straight into the ac­tion and learn very lit­tle about Miller, Mo­moa and Fisher’s new­bies; although they’re all sched­uled for their own stand­alone movies.

There’s so much to take in and the sur­pris­ing un­der-two-hour length doesn’t give ev­ery­thing time to breathe, although it breezes by at a break­neck pace.

Sny­der’s fa­mous eye for a mes­mer­iz­ing vis­ual that could’ve been ripped straight from the pages of a comic book does our he­roes plenty of favours, es­pe­cially Bat­man, but Whe­don’s knack for witty di­a­logue fares less well.

Much of the words spouted are clunky and ex­po­si­tion-heavy and while you will laugh at a few of the jokes, there are as many gags you’ll roll your eyes at as Whe­don fails to re­peat the warmth and nat­u­ral banter he in­jected into his Avengers flicks.

Gadot and Af­fleck come top of the League, the for­mer once again prov­ing to be the crown jewel in DC’s crown and the lat­ter build­ing strongly on his di­vi­sive turn in Bat­man v Su­per­man.

Speak­ing of di­vi­sive, I’m still try­ing to work out whether I en­joyed or dis­liked Miller’s take on The Flash. One thing is for sure, Grant Gustin does the Scar­let Speed­ster more jus­tice on the small screen.

Mo­moa is cool­ness per­son­i­fied and I want to see more of his Aqua­man, and Cy­borg has sev­eral ace pow­ers – it’s just a shame they are gifted to a rather bland Fisher.

One of the crit­i­cisms of­ten aimed at Mar­vel is the qual­ity of their vil­lains, but even by those flawed stan­dards, Step­pen­wolf is a soul­less cypher un­wor­thy of fac­ing off with the League.

But Sny­der and Whe­don have man­aged to keep a few se­crets from the hefty mar­ket­ing cam­paign, there are spine-tin­gling call-backs to the classic Bat­man 89 and Su­per­man 78 mu­si­cal scores and a stun­ning Lord of the Rings-meet­sThe Avengers flash­back.

And although we never get a true sense of global peril and things get wrapped up far too quickly, the fi­nal few min­utes – and the mi­dand-post-cred­its scenes – are real crowd-pleasers.

Jus­tice League isn’t the epic ad­ven­ture many were hop­ing for, but it’s lively, fun and never dull.

Team­ing up Won­der Wo­man, Bat­man and The Flash in ac­tion

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