DC Universe Animated Original Movies has pretty much been a dynasty in the super hero animated league of film. From Under The Red Hood to Doomsday: The Death Of Superman, DC has been the staple of polished and entertaining films. Even the films that aren’t masterpieces have always been entertaining at the very least. However, you can’t hit a home run at bat every single time and sadly, Justice League: Gods and Monsters is a strike out.
The film and its alternate universe does have a few interesting and comedic moments, but not enough to sustain any interest for very long. This siesta of an adventure begins on Krypton when General Zod imprints his DNA seed into the egg of the unborn future Man Of Steel. No, this isn’t a kinky love-making betrayal of Lara (Superman’s mother), but a quick finger print DNA implant scene. Was kind of disappointed there.
This film could have used some excitement, but we will get to that later. The concept of Superman being the son of General Zod was actually a pretty interesting concept. Would Superman still be the same noble hero we have grown to know and love over the years? Would Zod’s hunger for power DNA change our hero for the worse? Sadly, director Sam Liu never took that Lambo of an idea and punched the gas on the open country road.
One of the biggest surprises and disappointments for me was Michael C. Hall’s take on Batman. Actually, I can’t even use the word Batman. Why? He’s not even Bruce Wayne, he is the infamous Man Bat, Kirk Langstrom. Did I also mention this Batman is a blood sucking vampire too? Those two complaints aside, it was the voice acting that killed this character for me.
Being a fan of both Batman and Showtime’s Dexter series, I was pretty shocked to listen to what I have no doubt is the worst Batman ever. Made George Clooney’s Batman look like Bale’s Dark Knight. Hall was just plain dull. Could barely keep my eyes open in every scene “Batman” was in. Imagine Dexter without any of the humor and charisma and you will get a fraction of the disappointment.
Not sure Superman aka alternate universe “Hernan Guerra” was any better. Not that voice actor, Benjamin Bratt, was bad. He just didn’t make the role his own. I did chuckle during his “what a b*^ch” line when describing a famous DC character though. Honestly, voice acting wasn’t the issue here. It was the character design. Every member looks ridiculous outside of maybe Wonder Woman who actually looks pretty cool. From the costume that screams “must be laundry day at the watch tower” to his slick and well-trimmed and oiled mustache and goatee,Superman looks like a Miami porn star who walks the beach on a daily basis offering free massages to woman in bikinis.
Tamara Taylor’s Wonder Woman doesn’t exactly steal the show either. She was simply solid at best. Just kind of there the entire film. I will say, out of all the members of the Justice League, she most of all holds the spirit of the character. Wish she had some more screen time to save this snooze fest.
Noticed I haven’t touched on the plot yet? That is because I have completely forgot! It was that forgettable. One of those films where you are halfway through and still don’t know what the hell is going on. Be it from bad pacing or possibly due to a complete lack of interest from the viewer. I think I must have looked at my watch a half a dozen times during the film’s conclusion. There may or may not have been some resemblance of a plot that centered around someone framing the Justice League for crimes that may or may not have committed. Frankly, I didn’t even care.
Speaking of the Justice League, was pretty disappointed (starting to notice the word “disappointment” as the them of this review yet?) that there were only three members in the film. If you are going to call a movie,”Justice League” in the title that is set in an alternate universe, then why not have some fun with it and bring in the entire League?
In the action department, another disappointment. I don’t think there was one “holy s*&t” scene that made me feel like I got my dollars/times worth. Even the fighting choreography was right there with your typical generic Saturday morning cartoon rerun.
Now for some, this might be something fresh and different that will be a joy to watch. In that respect, this was a solid film at best. For those like myself who love what makes the Justice League the Justice League …well then you might want to skip this one. You won’t find any witty one liners between the Flash and Green Lantern, any romance between Superman and Lois/Wonder Woman, or any jabs between Batman and Superman here.
Maybe if I ever find myself in an alternate universe as well, I would then consider having a place for his film in my DC library, but I don’t. I live in the real world where this film is a 72 minute snooze fest and the worst of the DC line up. The only saving grace for this film was DC Animated Films continued pedigree of animation.
I give Justice League: Gods and Monsters 1 1/2 out of 4 Ninja Throwing Stars.