It's finally here, ladies and gentlemen. Justice League hit theaters on the 17th and the reviews for WB's first superhero team up have not been pretty. Batman, Wonder Woman, and the rest of DC's finest unite to stop a cosmic threat who wants to reshape Earth into a barren wasteland. The movie certainly has its enjoyable moments, but overall was a major step backwards for the studio after Wonder Woman took audiences by storm earlier this year.
The movie's plot was relatively simple and there was a standard MacGuffin thrown in to make things as simple as possible. For the most part, the story was easily understood, but some things just didn't make sense. From both a character and story perspective, Justice League made quite a few mistakes that make it hard to believe this is the best Zack Snyder and his team could come up with. Batman v Superman certainly wasn't a perfect movie, but overall it felt like a coherent story that was trying to make a point. Justice League, on the other hand, feels like the product of two very different filmmakers with two very different messages.
Get ready to scratch your head, folks! Come read about 15 Things About Justice League That Make No Sense.
Batman is the master of mystery. The Caped Crusader goes out of his way to stay out of the public limelight and always makes sure to wear a mask whenever he stops crime. But for some reason, this expert detective decided to say Alfred's name over the intercom right in front of a common street criminal.
Batman reaches out to Alfred after confronting a parademon, so it is an intense moment, but there is no reason Batman would say Alfred's name in front of a criminal. The DCEU Batman seems like a veteran hero, so making a rookie mistake like this makes no sense for someone so protective of his secret identity.
In the comics, codenames like Pennyone have been used to allow Batman to communicate while in the field, so it wouldn't have been too difficult to create a similar name for Justice League.
The parademons serve as the mindless goons in the movie. Comprising the bulk of Steppenwolf's army, the parademons were made to fight on hellish battlefields and can even smell their opponents fear. In addition to being powerful and terrifying, this is a powerful ability for the fighting force due to how much fear they naturally inflict in their opponents.
Near the end of the movie, the parademons smell Steppenwolf's fear after he realizes he may not be able to accomplish his goal. The army mindlessly turns on their master and begins attacking him in an desperate flurry. While that makes sense and is an easy way to stop an otherwise godly villain, the parademons ability isn't shown in a consistent manner throughout the movie.
When Flash first sees Steppenwolf, he freaks out and is visibly shaken by the "tall" villain. In that instant, Flash's fear should have been potent enough to attract the parademons to the team, but conveniently enough that didn't happen.
The Amazons are some of the fiercest warriors in the world. In order to keep themselves protected, they wear full body armor that guards their torsos from all attacks. Their armor was fully secure and metal plated in Wonder Woman, but for some reason it was scaled back in Justice League.
Instead of being fully protected, the Amazons now wear what are essentially battle bikinis. Important characters like Queen Hippolyta still have their own unique costumes, but the Amazon army is comprised of soldiers who are constantly leaving themselves open to damage. Odds are good that this was a Snyder/Whedon decision and as soon as Patty Jenkins gets her hands back on the characters, the full armor will return.
A big plot point in the movie rotates around the Justice League's attempt to bring Superman back to life. Thanks to the Motherboxes and Zod's kryptonian ship, the team thinks they have the technology to save him - they just need to get their hands on the body.
Even though the dirt shook at the end of Batman v Superman, implying Clark Kent was still alive while he was being buried at his funeral, he is either dead or in a supercoma when the team finally digs him up. The Flash and Cyborg are the team members who get stuck with the responsibility of digging him up, but for some reason they do it at normal speeds.
In Flash's mind, digging up a grave at normal speed instead of superspeed is more respectful, but at the end of the day, both ways break the law - and time is of the essence since they're trying to stop an apocalypse!
Justice League is the culmination of years worth of planning for executives at WB. Instead of the masterpiece they were hoping it for, the movie has received a muddied reception from audiences and critics. A big part of the humdrum response revolves around how bland the plot is.
A villain wants to use an alien piece of technology to terraform the Earth into his old home world. On the surface, that's an interesting idea, but the DCEU has already done that. Zod attacked Earth in Man of Steel for the same exact reason: he wanted to transform Earth into Krypton. There's no reason for the DCEU to already be recycling story ideas, especially ones as vague and non-specific as this.
When Bruce is convincing the League that bringing Superman back using the mother boxes is the right call, they all justifiably raise the point that he could "come back wrong." Batman assures them that he as a "contigency" plan in case this happens, and later obliquely refers to the "big guns" when talking to Alfred. What could this secret weapon be that will stop Batman? Did he find more Kryptonite somehow?
No, it's Lois Lane.
That's right, after the entire League has their butts handed to them by a confused resurrected Superman, Batman calls in the big guns and they're just... Lois talking to Clark. While this is romantic, and show Bruce's new faith in and dedication to Superman, it doesn't exactly make sense. Batman is known as the character who had "contingency plans" to take down the entire Justice League in case they went wrong in the comics, and here his only plan in case Superman comes back evil is... love?
The ending scene of Justice League reveals that Lex Luthor is trying to build his own league to counter the world's heroes. During the events of the movie, Luthor escaped from prison and even had a body double sent in off-screen. When the guards finally realize Luthor is missing, the fill-in prisoner develops a wicked grin and starts laughing, implying that The Joker helped him with his break out. While that makes sense from a character perspective, when did the two of them find the time to communicate and set up such an elaborate plot?
At the end of Batman V. Superman, Luthor seemed to be in a weird head space, so it's unlikely he had much access to the outside world.
Perhaps the Blackgate employee Joker manipulated in Suicide Squad will finally come into play because he essentially disappeared last time he was on screen right as his character was getting interesting.
Early on in the movie, Wonder Woman tells Batman about the last time Steppenwolf attacked Earth. The flashback sequence shows a massive army comprised of thousands of Amazonians, Atlanteans, and even some aliens. One of the most exciting moments of the movie comes during this scene where a Green Lantern is clearly shown fighting off parademons in the air.
All of these great warriors apparently pale in comparison to the power of one Kryptonian. While Wonder Woman and Superman haven't properly fought in the DCEU yet, he's not that much stronger than she is. He's clearly strong, but it doesn't make sense that they were able to defeat Steppenwolf that much quicker with just one Kryptonian as opposed to thousands of seasoned warriors. There's an argument to be made that Superman was overpowered due to being resurrected by the Mother Box, but there's no textual evidence of this onscreen.
There was only one Green Lantern shown in the movie, but during the story Diana describes the force as made up of numerous allies from space, implying there were more Green Lanterns or other alien warriors fighting Steppenwolf alongside them. Superman is great, but he's can't match the Green Lantern Corps as a whole.
Victor Stone is one conflicted young man. Once Gotham City University's star quarter back, Victor survived a terrible accident that resulted in him losing much of his organic body. To rescue his son, Silas Stone combined Victor with a series of advance electronics that turned him into a cyborg. His emotional arc is one of the most interesting in the movie as he realizes that his burden is actually a gift, but there's one thing off about his character.
A big part of Victor's identity is his love of his home city: Detroit. To make things more convenient, the creative team decided to transplant him to Gotham City, but if Cyborg is going to have his own movie in the future, shouldn't it be set outside of Gotham? The Marvel Universe is set mostly in New York, so there's no reason for DC to be afraid to set a movie in a real city as long as they treat it with respect.
Since Batman v Superman, Wonder Woman has still stuck in the shadows for the most part. Her passivity even leads to Batman confronting her and trying to jolt her into becoming an inspirational force in the way that Superman was. Wonder Woman may be trying to keep a low profile, but she still runs and jumps around, stopping crime in costume.
So, when she has a meeting with Cyborg for the first time, it makes no sense that Diana would drive there. Sure, she may drive to work in order to keep a low profile in front of her co-workers at the museum, but when it comes to meeting a potential ally for the battle against Steppenwolf, why would she stay inconspicuous?
Diana is fast enough to fly or jump there without being noticed - quicker than she could in a car - so it doesn't make much sense that she would opt to drive. Maybe she just likes Bruce's fancy car, but Diana Prince doesn't seem like the materialistic type.
Batman is an incredibly skilled fighter. Equipped with tech and an insane knowledge of martial arts, Batman can take down pretty much any street thug, and can even put up a good fight against Superman with enough preparation.
Early on in the movie, Batman fights a single parademon and almost loses his life against the powerful alien. Fast forward to the end of the movie, and Batman is single handedly fighting numerous parademons and even incapacitating them with what seems like a single blow.
While it makes sense from a movie standpoint to have the main heroes quickly dispose of the minion characters, Batman does nothing throughout the movie to make himself more equipped to fight off these bugs. Based on how much trouble he had at the beginning of the movie, and the fact that the first parademon literally self-destructed to stop Batman from winning, Batman should not have been able to defeat so many during the final battle sequence.
Justice League sees Steppenwolf threaten the whole planet and only five superheroes step up to save the day. While Batman may have tried to shut down the Suicide Squad in their movie, the fact that the movie is getting a sequel means the team is still operating. Sure, the movie might have felt overstuffed if the Suicide Squad showed up and fought alongside the Justice League, but it doesn't make sense that A.R.G.U.S. wasn't at least mentioned.
Amanda Waller is one of the craftiest women on the planet. It's more than likely that she knew exactly what was happening at the nuclear plant as Steppenwolf was attacking. Her team might not have been able to stop him, but situations like this were exactly what the team was originally made for.
She doesn't know that Superman has been resurrected, so why not send in the task force she developed specifically to deal with threats after his death?
This might be a bit of a stretch, but the entire plot of Justice League can be described as a hunt for a thing. Steppenwolf is searching for the three mother boxes so he can destroy the Earth. It's just so simple it hurts. There's no subtlety, there's no character development and there's certainly no backstory that pushes Steppenwolf forward. He's just a generic villain seeking to destroy the world with a generic item.
Structurally, this is called a MacGuffin, where the plot is dictated by one character's hunt for a certain item. While the MacGuffin itself makes sense, it's just a weird choice for DC to do this in its first team-up movie. The Mother Boxes are ridiculously similar to the Infinite Stones and essentially serve the same storytelling purpose as Thanos is hunting them down in order to destroy or reshape the galaxy..
There are so many Justice League stories to take inspiration from, and yet DC made a Marvel-esque move.
The flashback sequence in the movie shows massive armies of Amazons and Atlanteans coming together to take on Steppenwolf and his army. The two groups have been keeping their Mother Boxes under lock and key, but fail to stop Steppenwolf from taking them when he finally returns. These groups of warriors might not be able to stop Steppenwolf alone, but together they put up one hell of a fight.
For some reason these groups don't come into play in Justice League. Though Diana makes mention of the Amazons being trapped on Themyscira and says the Atlanteans were driven underwater, we know that the Atlanteans are planning to invade dry land in Aquaman's solo movie. But how would such an invasion work if there was no land to invade? Surely aiding the fight against Steppenwolf would help their cause.
WB was right to inject some light-hearted comedy into the DCU after seeing how audiences reacted to the bleak Batman v Superman. While The Flash is the primary source of comedic relief in the movie, Batman also took on more of a jokester role.
Whether he is in costume or just walking around as Bruce Wayne, Ben Affleck was full of quips in this movie. Lines like "Do you really talk to to fish?" and "I'm rich" might seem funny on paper, but when Batman says them they just feel out of place. Even if Batman is in a better mood during this movie, he should still be in the back, brooding and plotting.
Everyone tells jokes in this movie, so it would have been smart for WB to keep Batman out of that lane because it fits better with his character.
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