The Reul reel: Justice League


To put it quite simply, Zack Snyder’s 2017 adaptation of Justice League is a much messier version of The Avengers.

The film follows Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) as he attempts to unionize a team of metahumans in order to defeat the disappointing villain, Steppenwolf (Ciarán Hinds), from destroying the world in an apocalyptic rage that honestly does not provide any sense of impending doom whatsoever.

I’ll be the first to admit that I have been and always will be a Marvel supporter over the opposing DC franchise (see page 11), but after the box–office success of director Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman which put the DC universe in a new light, I walked into the theater with high hopes. However, the plot of Justice League has strikingly familiar ties to that of Joss Whedon’s The Avengers right down to the parallelism between the tesseract and the three supernatural Mother Boxes that also contain destructive power.

The computer–generated imagery is extremely weak, failing to effectively blend visual effects with reality. Close–ups of Superman (Henry Cavill) were borderline laughable as the visual effects team spent millions of dollars on covering up the mustache he had to keep while simultaneously working on Mission: Impossible 6.

And don’t even get me started on the discrepancies between the Amazon warriors’ costumes in Wonder Woman and in Justice League. The costumes become more revealing, unnecessarily sexualizing the warriors. And let’s be real—how is fighting in a literal bikini going to provide any protection on the battlefront?

All of this is not to say that the film wasn’t entertaining. In fact, the chemistry between the heroes is prominent, despite that fact that none of the characters appear strong enough to sustain their own feature film. The obscure relationship between the Flash (Ezra Miller) and Superman provides a much–needed source of comic relief considering the dark, brooding nature of the other members of the group. If you haven’t already seen the film, stay for the post–credits scene. It’s worth it.

And Snyder admittedly diminishes the guy–who–talks–to–fish stigma commonly associated with Aquaman (Jason Momoa)  by transforming him into a tattooed alcoholic. Maybe not the best figure to put on a pedestal, but it gets the job done.

Although containing notable flaws, the film is a step in the right direction. Justice League sets up the DC universe for more films that, hopefully, will improve with baby steps.