After it was announced that the Rotten Tomatoes score for Justice League wouldn’t be revealed until the film’s release date, DC Comics fans tensed up worse than Ben Affleck‘s grim Batman portrayal.
Now that the reviews are flying in, it appears Warner Bros.‘ superhero ensemble blockbuster was actually a step up from Batman V Superman — unfortunately, that’s not saying much.
While the critics agreed Justice League was nowhere close to the quality of Wonder Woman, most felt a slight feeling of — what is that word? entertainment? — watching the superheroes band together for some banter and asskicking.
With Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa, and Ezra Miller stealing the show as Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and The Flash, reviewers weren’t even completely put off by Affleck’s forgettable performance as the Dark Knight.
But even a lighter, more Avengers-y tone couldn’t totally save this film from being yet another miss for Batman and friends.
See what the critics had to say (below)!
Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter: “Garishly unattractive to look at and lacking the spirit that made Wonder Woman, which came out five months ago, the most engaging of Warner Bros.’ DC Comics-derived extravaganzas to date, this hodgepodge throws a bunch of superheroes into a mix that neither congeals nor particularly makes you want to see more of them in future. Plainly put, it’s simply not fun.”
Owen Gleiberman, Variety: “[Justice League] has been conceived, in each and every frame, to correct the sins of Batman v Superman. It’s not just a sequel ├óΓé¼ΓÇ¥ it’s an act of franchise penance. The movie… is never messy or bombastic. It’s light and clean and simple (at times almost too simple), with razory repartee and combat duels that make a point of not going on for too long.”
Manohla Dargis, The New York Times: “Written by Chris Terrio and Joss Whedon, the new movie shows a series that’s still finding its footing as well as characters who, though perhaps not yet as ostensibly multidimensional as Marvel‘s, may be more enduring (and golden). It has justice, and it has banter. And while it could have used more hanging out, more breeziness, it is a start.”
Eric Kohn, IndieWire: “The resulting 119-minute pileup of showdowns and one-liners is an undeniably tighter, more engaging experience [than other recent DC films]. It’s also a tired, conventional attempt to play by the rules, with ‘hold for laughs’ moments shoehorned between rapid-fire action ├óΓé¼ΓÇ¥ a begrudging concession that the Marvel formula works, and a shameless attempt to replicate it.”
Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly: “So much attention was paid to the smaller, fizzier character moments that the bigger picture of the film’s overarching plot was a second or third priority Someday, hopefully soon, DC will get the recipe right again and duplicate Wonder Woman‘s storytelling magic. But today isn’t that day, and Justice League, unfortunately, isn’t that film.”
Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: “Let’s face it, [the villain] is a CGI yawn, the action sequences are often a digital blur, the soundtrack defaults to loud whenever inspiration wanes and keeping it light becomes the first step to staying superficial. Justice League is a decent crowdpleaser, preferable in every way to the candy-assed cynicism of Suicide Squad.”
Brian Truitt, USA Today: “Justice League is as solid an outing as any superhero fan could hope, with a clear family vibe: Wonder Woman and Batman prove to be a dynamic mom-and-dad duo while the fastest kid around steals the show”
Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian: “Momoa brings some punch and humour to this film, especially with Aquaman’s inadvertent confession of a certain tendresse for Wonder Woman, and Ezra Miller does his best with the Flash, whose job it is to provide the nerdy, incredulous, alienated humour… But Ben Affleck is unrelaxed and ill-at-ease in the role of Batman/Bruce, unconvincing in both the bat armour and the three-piece suit of the wealthy plutocrat”
Jim Vejvoda, IGN: “Some reshot sequences do stand out like proverbial sore thumbs due to obvious continuity differences. But at least emotionally and tonally, Justice League is fairly consistent throughout. It does not feel like a movie with an identity crisis as much as I’d feared.”
[Image via Warner Bros..]