By staff writer, Manisha Panthee
With a production budget of $300 million, it was to be expected that JusticeLeague would have to live up to high expectations. Unfortunately, those expectations were not to be met. Very high on the list of of most expensive movies produced in the 21st century, the opening weekend revenue was only $94 million, falling short by $2 million of Warner Bro’s estimates.
The plot of Justice League is straightforward enough. With Superman dead
and a new villain, Steppenwolf, threatening to destroy the world, Batman and Wonder Woman assemble a team of superheroes to defeat him, including Flash, Cyborg, and Aquaman.
Steppenwolf, in simple terms, is disappointing. With so many more
recognizable and popular villains, it is a wonder that he and his legion of Parademons were chosen as the antagonists. He has no motive to destroy the world other than a generic need for destruction. There is not much available for viewers to connect with, or even to make him likeable. It seemed like he was just cast for lack of a better villain.
Steppenwolf’s plan is to gather three boxes- called Motherboxes- scattered across Earth that have some so-called powers, and has use them for ultimate destruction. Frankly, this plot line falls flat with its delivery. Although, some might say that this was an interesting way to lead into a sequel, perhaps with a villain that has history with Steppenwolf, such as Darkseid.
Steppenwolf isn’t the only unsatisfactory character in Justice League.
Henry Cavill as Superman, Ben Affleck as Batman, and Ray Fisher as Cyborg are really nothing memorable, although that may be due more to the script than the acting skills. Although the recognizable heroes were meant to draw viewers in, the dull and highly predictable characters were quite a bore. Brooding Batman, Woe-Is-Me Cyborg, and Mr. Perfect Superman gets old quite quickly. The Flash’s comic relief and Wonder Woman’s role are perhaps some of the only highlights in the movie.
Even so far, unmemorable characteristics and subpar villains are not enough
to completely downgrade a movie. Alas, the chemistry within the characters were what really brought it down. All throughout the movie, there was a palpable tension between Batman and Wonder Woman, but it was forced through the script, not in any way natural. In fact, there was barely any type of chemistry, romantic or not, between any of the characteristics. We are not given much backstory about the characters, making it inconvenient to form a connection with them. Even when they are saving the world, or trying to keep the motherboxes safe from Steppenwolf, the emotion is just not there, whether from the characters or the viewers.
That’s not to say there is nothing redeemable about the movie. As said before,
Flash and Wonder Woman did not disappoint. Even during times such as when Batman and Wonder Woman were about to bite each other’s heads off, we could count on Flash to lighten the mood with a “if she kills you, we will cover for her.” Although who knows- he might have been serious. And for those who enjoy seeing Aquaman played by Jason Momoa, who was also cast as Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones, shirtless, this movie has plenty of that to offer.
While Justice League might not have been worth the $300 million it cost to
produce, perhaps Warner Bros will take it as a lesson. Less expensive movies have been very profitable. The Dark Knight and Batman V.S Wonder Woman are clear examples of this, with both production budgets under $200 million and revenue of more than $800 million. Here’s to hoping the next movie Warner Bros produces will be worth the expense for both producers and viewers.