The latest DCEU film is here and the big question is, is it another Batman vs Superman disappointment or a good entry such as Wonder Woman or Man Of Steel?
The plot of this film is that Steppenwolf has returned and is intent on combining the three mother boxes that will allow him to conquer and remake this world into his own. Thousands of years ago he tried this, but only an alliance of Gods, Amazons, Atlanteans, Humans and the Green Lanterns could foil him.
In the present, the world still mourns Superman. Steppenwolf and his army of Parademons turn up in Themyscira and he manages to retrieve the first mother box despite the best attempt of the Amazons. Queen Hippolyta lights the invasion fire to warn Diana. She joins Bruce Wayne in the hunt for allies in the upcoming battle. Diana searches for Victor Stone (Cyborg) whilst Bruce searches for Barry Allen (The Flash) and Arthur Curry (Aquaman).
Allen is eager to join the team noting his inability to socialise with people. Curry and Stone, however turn down the offer to join the team. Parademons in search of the Motherbox kidnap Stones father as they can smell the motherbox on him. In an effort to save his father Stone joins the team.
Steppenwolf attacks Atlantis and manages to steal the second motherbox and kills some Atlanteans. Curry decides to fight in the face of the apocalypse and heads off to Gotham to meet up with the rest of the Justice League. The group minus Aquaman, with the help of Alfred and commissioner Gordon manage to locate Steppenwolfs base. They manage to rescue the kidnapped public including Stone’s father but are unable to defeat Steppenwolf. Only the arrival of Aquaman stops them dying as the base floods.
Stone retrieves the last motherbox that his father used to save him following a car accident. Bruce believes that the box can be used to bring Superman back to life so he can help them defeat Steppenwolf. Diana is vehemently against the plan but reluctantly agrees to go through with the plan as it is their best hope.
They manage to resurrect Superman but he has no memories and he begins to fight the members of the Justice League with only Lois Lanes arrival thanks to Alfred calming him down and restoring his memories. Superman and Lois fly off to return home. The rest of the group during the chaos of the battle do not realise Steppenwolf has arrived and reclaimed the last mother box. They see him disappear and realise he can now bring forth the “unity” and recreate this world in the image of his own.
The team without Superman set off to Russia to stop Steppenwolf. They manage to fight through the Parademons but are unable to defeat Steppenwolf until Superman returns. With Superman they are able to stop and defeat Steppenwolf and save the world. Following the battle, Bruce and Diana plan to rebuild Wayne Manor as a base with room to add more individuals to the Justice League. In the post scene credits Lex Luther escapes Arkham and forms a team of his own with Slade Wilson.
This film is an improvement on Superman vs Batman but fails to reach the quality of Wonder Woman. The team coming together feels rushed and it is hard to care about Cyborg, The Flash or Aquaman as we have not had their own origin film. With only Superman and Wonder Woman’s story having been explored you have no emotional connection with the other characters.
Once again the star turn in this film is Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman. Whilst the other heroes feel wooden and emotionless, Gal is able to deliver a fantastic performance bringing a sense of human emotion and hurt to the film. It is clear that Diana is still mourning and troubled by the loss of Steve Trevor which has led her to be closed off from the world and only fighting when necessary instead of bringing hope to everyone.
Another stand out cameo is Amy Adams as Lois Lane. Much like Gal she is able to bring real emotions to the film along with a sense of sorrow, dread and ultimately hope. The biggest problem with this film is barring these two performances, the film feels wooden and lacks any clear character progression to take this franchise further.
The big elephant in the room for this film is the CGI. CGI when used correctly can really add to the film to show epic battles or scenery. In this film, too often the CGI falls flat. From the poor landscaping of Themyscira to the fake looking villain it feels this film has been rushed. Instead of spending time getting the graphics right and looking realistic, it looks like the producers have got to 90% complete and thought that will do. What made Wonder Woman such a good film was focus on the characters and using CGI when necessary and ensuring it looked real.
The CGI with The Flash is however fantastic but these great visuals are quickly ruined by the farce of moustachegate.
I rate this film 2.5* out of a possible 5. There are some sections of this film including interactions between some of the cast that are really fantastic but sections of the film that simply poor. Unlike the most recent Marvel films, the use of humour is used sparingly and does not feel forced. Furthermore, the soundtrack is in sync with the film and builds on previous entry’s such as Wonder Woman. This film ultimately is a missed opportunity for DC. The fantastic acting of Amy Adams and Gal Gador shows the potential DC has, but instead of focusing on making this film great, they have settled with an average film that is an improvement on the poor Suicide Squad and Batman vs Superman.