Justice League Review

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As trendy as it is to bash DC movies, I have to admit in 2017, DC has improved considerably from 2016. They have addressed a lot (not all) of my complaints about Batman vs. Superman and Suicide Squad. Because of this, Justice League is entertaining enough for me to watch, but not enough for me to get pumped up for the franchise. I am not convinced they have “Found their stride” for a lack of a better term.

Watching Justice League, I noticed that they took a lot of the critical consensus from last year into account. That is admirable. The tone was not as murky and depressing as Batman vs. Superman, it is not overly zany and jarring as Suicide Squad. The character development still needs work (especially Cyborg) but it was miles better than Suicide Squad just to name a few critiques.

What I ultimately got out of Justice League was a basic plot that was easy to understand and mildly entertaining. It is the kind of movie you would watch to pass the time. Sometimes that is all a movie aspires to be, which I am fine with. Justice League has more ambition than that. The end product is not good enough be an outstanding superhero movie that you would expect or want. It’s just another superhero movie.

To put in perspective how ordinary it is, the villain is the most generic villain ever. He is called Steppenwolf and his movie is to destroy the world, Why? Who knows. I bet you have never heard of a movie villain like that before! He aims to destroy the world through the unification of three boxes that represent power. One box is protected by the Amazonians, another box is protected by the Atlantians and the third box is protected by humans.

Another thing about Justice League you may need to know is that it’s entirely the Superman show. Justice League shows you how omnipotent he really is. In Superman’s first fight sequence, it goes to show how insignificant the rest of the superheroes are. The rest of the characters have some form of inner conflict or vulnerability, but Justice League does not follow through with them, making them small insignificant in comparison to Superman. At least they all want to work together this time.

When I first saw Wonder Woman, I felt it was a great launching platform for a bigger movie down the line. Justice League is not that bigger movie down the line, even though it aspires to be. Nevertheless, it is a step up from BvS and Suicide Squad purely because it addresses a lot of what annoyed me about those movies. However, if you wanted an epic movie where well-developed superheroes united to fight a well-developed villain, well, you would want more than what Justice League gives you. ⭐⭐3/4


Thor: Ragnarock- Fun Enough



Thor: Ragnarok I feel, is the most standardized Marvel movie. Thor: Ragnarok has good special effects, nice action set pieces, fleshed out characters and a story that is engaging. In turn, it also has all the minute elements that drive me crazy about Marvel movies in general.

Thor: Ragnarok starts off with Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) dying. Odin tells Thor that Hela: Goddess of Death (Cate Blanchett) has been released. In an ensuing fight, Hela banishes Thor and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) to the other end of the universe in a planet where Thor has to win an arena battle and travel back to Asgard before Hela takes control of the land and the people.

Thor: Ragnarok meets the minimum requirements of what you would expect from a Marvel movie. It has fun action sequences, character-building elements, and storytelling that is easy to follow and engaging. Ultimately, those are the main elements that make a good Marvel movie and that makes Thor: Ragnarock a success.

The Positives of Thor: Ragnarock

The bits that are the most fun are far and away the scenes where Thor is banished and has to fight in an arena to gain freedom. His opponent is a surprising one which I will leave you, the viewer to find out (even though they spoil it in the trailer). This creates interesting an funny dynamic between the characters both in and out of the battle.

The action sequences are also well choreographed as you would expect. This time, Thor: Ragnarok decides to take its influences of action sequences through previous entities of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, specifically Doctor Strange when there are action sequences occurring through interdimensional time travel. Blanchett gets action sequences reminiscent of the infamous Kill Bill action sequences 1 person against the 99 extras.The climactic battle sequence was also well chreographed.

Finally (For the good aspects at least), I would like to praise Thor: Ragnarock for making a story that is easy to understand particularly being the third installment of the franchise. You don’t have to know what happens in the first two to know what is going on in this one. Normally, it takes me awhile before I understand what is going on in a franchise if I start halfway in. It makes it easier for not only me to enjoy it, but for newer viewers as well.

Now comes what I think the sucky part of Thor Ragnarock. Unfortunately, it is what a lot of what I think a lot Marvel movies suffer from which is the ill-placed gags that don’t usually work.

The Annoying Gags of Thor: Ragnarock

Thor: Ragnarok, unfortunately, does not move as smoothly as I would have expected from a Marvel movie and that is because of the jarring tone. Thor: Ragnarock aims to have the mix the humor of Deadpool while trying to be as serious as Captain America: Civil War. Doctor Strange manages to balance the tons better than in Thor Ragnarock

This is mainly due to the ill-placed and predictable gags that Thor: Ragnarock possesses. You just know that when a villain is monologing there is going to be an ill-placed gag and when there a climactic scene, you guessed it, is an incoming gag. Marvel has to dilute the gravitas and disrupt the film’s momentum to insert a smarmy joke. It is like a compulsion. There are times when it is funny but most of the time, it really isn’t.

Nevertheless, the humor is an element of the movie, but the main elements of the movie (action, characters, storytelling) Thor: Ragnarok gets right. Unfortunately, I don’t see a point of difference in Thor Ragnarock with the recent Marvel entries like Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2 or Doctor Strange, but by no means is it a bad movie. It is entertaining to watch, easy to follow and never felt too long. ⭐⭐⭐1/2