Director: Zack Snyder
Cast: Gal Gadot, Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Jared Leto, Ezra Miller, Jason Momoa, Diane Lane, Amy Adams, JK Simmons and Robin Wright.
Rating: 4/5 stars
The Zack Snyder’s Justice League! What started off as a hashtag #releasethesnydercut, has finally arrived! The Joss Whedon cut that was released in 2017 was not accepted by the fans worldwide, and Zack Snyder has finally set its mark with the extended four hour version of the Justice League. A true director’s vision which shows that Zack Snyder is the man we need for the DC Universe movies to come into life. Zack Snyder’s Justice League is a film that went through many stages of development. This version of the movie is a clear-cut story that really brings about closure for the DC Extended Universe that was.
“Justice League” accomplishes in four hours what those films did in nine. It unites a team of superheroes, but never forgets that each of them is seriously worthy of his or her own story. It pits them against a humungous slab of rock-jawed evil ,in this case the molten Darkseid (who got trimmed out of the 2017 version) and his loyal demon henchman Steppenwolf ,who seeks to control all life in the universe. And it’s finally a startling tale of death and resurrection.
The five members of Justice League, gathered up by Batman and Wonder Woman, realize that they can’t save Earth without Superman, who is no longer with them. So they use one of the three Mother Boxes, the sources of infinite energy everyone is fighting to possess, to raise Clark Kent from the dead — a plot twist that was there in the 2017 version, but that’s the thing, it was just…there. Here, the hard-won reawakening of Superman becomes a transporting saga of its own.
Without restrictions, conventional time constraints, or the limitations of a theatrical experience, Zack Snyder’s Justice League is incredible. And no more so than in the way that the movie allows every character’s story arc to shine through. While Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) get only a few moments of emotional story beats to develop them, the newcomers get a lot. This makes sense, given that those two have gotten their own solo movies since the release of the theatrical Justice League. Two for Wonder Woman, actually.
But the storylines for Cyborg (Ray Fisher) and The Flash (Ezra Miller) are the most breathtaking. Cyborg’s superpowers are a cause for bitterness within him, given that they coincided with the loss of a loved one, leaving him feeling handicapped, both physically and emotionally. His story is about accepting the newfound power within him and finding his place in this new world (and within himself). And it’s done wonderfully. Fisher’s full range of talent is on display here as he gets to showcase a wide array of emotions. I loved every minute of Fisher as Cyborg and it’s a storyline that had many moments of tearful agony. It’s a shame that we may never get a solo Cyborg movie that could further explore this character and his unique space in comic book movies.
Beyond that, this has to be one of the most visually spellbinding comic-book movies ever made. The clashing battles never give you that weary, here’s-some-more-CGI feeling. Steppenwolf, with his horns of evil, is still the prime antagonist, but while he seemed a trifle effete in the 2017 version, here he has been reimagined as a splendid hulk covered in gleaming herringbone platelets that bristle with his emotion, and he’s also a disgraced assassin who will stoop to the unspeakable.
This is an entirely different movie altogether from its previous iteration. The most surprising part of this is how Snyder achieves that. Mostly through brand new, never-before-seen footage. There are recognizable scenes from the theatrical version, but totally changed in terms of perspective and stakes. Scenes we’ve seen before take on new meaning, new interpretations that connect back to other scenes of the movie. It’s more cohesive and connected.
“Justice League” ends with what may be the best post-comic-book-movie teaser ever, as Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor and then Jared Leto’s Joker hold court in twin lectures of doom that make you hungry to see the movies they promise. The movie is an epic superhero action movie that surpasses on all levels from the previous Joss Whedon cut! This is the ultimatum of DC movies, made for the matured audiences and not for the light hearted.