Love and Peace (2015)
Directed by Sion Sono, this is a movie about a man and his relationship with his turtle named Pikadon and his journey to becoming a rockstar. It's incredibly magical and wholesome and it's got me feeling all sorts of fuzzy feelings. The transformation of the main character and his revelation is enticing. The magical parts of the movie, especially towards the end are soul crushing, but is reconciled with uplifting moments. Turtles are awesome. 8/10
Directed by Mark Raso. With Ed Harris, Jason Sudeikis, Elizabeth Olsen, Bruce Greenwood. Set during the final days of the admired photo development system known as Kodachrome, a father and son hit the road in order to reach the Kansas photo lab before it closes its doors for good.
8/10 - Decent film. Jason Sudeikis & Elizabeth Olsen were both good in this film.
Directed by Spike Jonze. With Mike D, Adam Horovitz, Beastie Boys, Steve Buscemi. Mike Diamond and Adam Horovitz of Beastie Boys tell you an intimate, personal story of their band, and their 40 years of friendship together.
6/10 - I'm not the biggest fan of Beastie Boys. I listened to their music when it was on the radio or on MTV (when MTV played music videos), but def not a hardcore fan.
I didn't like how this documentary was filmed, in that it was filmed live on stage in a Brooklyn theatre by Director Spike Jonze.
Mike Diamond and Adam Horovitz told the history of the band well, but couldn't get past that they were both reading from a teleprompter/autocue.
Mike & Adam had to stop a few times during the show due to errors Spike Jonze had made (teleprompter/autocue out of sequence, visual displays behind them not working).... it was kinda cool to see these errors make it into the final cut, as the Beastie Boys 'Didn't Give A Fuck' back then, and they 'Don't Give A Fuck' today.
Mike & Adam talk about Adam Yauch alot during this doco - and its sad to hear Adam Horovitz talk about their last gig as a band prior to Adam Yauch's death.
I'm sure hardcore fans will rate it higher.
This was not in the docu, but I loved this live appearance on Letterman.
Directed by George P. Cosmatos. With Sylvester Stallone, Brigitte Nielsen, Reni Santoni, Andrew Robinson. A tough-on-crime street cop must protect the only surviving witness to a strange murderous cult with far-reaching plans.
6.5/10 - OK film, typical Stallone type of film. With the wife Brigitte Nielsen having a leading role.
My mate told me about a dre and snoop film .
I thought he was high and meant friday as he ain't into the rap shit i like. Anyways its called THE WASH its a funny film. It's and I think I'm right it's the only film the best rap producer ever Dr Dre did due the shit with suge knight and snoop leaving to work at Master P"s company, which he always states saved his career. While dre and Jimmy iovine made aftermath records which was going before dre signed into one of the most diverse labels in America it's got rock, pop, heavy metal think dre has done a few beats for them and then they realised money for CD's isn't gonna be around for them to survive that's how BEATS headphones was formed they showed them testing everything from tape recorders to CD recorders and they said we will do it our way look at how much there both worth dre 3rd after jay n diddy 870m .
That's why I like to see ppl get of there lazy backsides and follow ur. dreams guys and ladies u might get a ton of no's I did off the owner of the resestraunt in the city where im from said let me make u a Geordie meal of beef stew and dumplings i also made a couple of cruse roasties in goose fat and fr peas out the pod then made a mint reduction with whitevvinegar and fresh mint but i done it till there was Just enough to serve.the He went fantastico and all the chefs tried magnificent theysaid I was on cloud 9 he went you start next week as it was a Sunday and I.knew he came there on Sundays. I was a line chef for 15 years and it was hard now I've paid my dues he asked me in July u want to be head chef I trust u but also i want you taking bit more easy with my seizures ( he could of went.hetes ur p45) he got me a new job aswell in a catering college it was a dream job as I've always liked giving back to.the next generation the commitment i.get is second to.none.
Fight for your dreams ladies and gentlemen they do come true if u keep trying and not giving up u.couldld get knocked back.loads but.if it's a job u.want and have a passion for dont give up.it wiĺ happen
I'missing both jobs but i had over 590 exams papers to mark its hard as im dyslexic but lucky I know a lot of how to spell the names of ingredients and I practice now i have time on other words it's not easy but manageable.
That's the story of the film follow ur dreams and shows you that they do come true. Just never succumb to just being someone u don't wanna be or do. When the epidemic is over ur dream job could be waiting for you. get steppin my mama would say job time ur 18 at the time aftervcatering college.
I really hope u guys n gals fiñdva job in Love as its great going into work big smile my cleaning lady said I've not been smiling as much. She knew u muss ur job Mr Carter yeah I do hun.
Directed by Cory Finley. With Hugh Jackman, Ray Romano, Welker White, Allison Janney. The beloved superintendent of New York's Roslyn school district and his staff, friends and relatives become the prime suspects in the unfolding of the single largest public school embezzlement scandal in...
3/10 - Although a true story, its a very ordinary story. Great performances by Hugh Jackman, Allison Janney and the amazing Geraldine Viswanathan.
There is alot of talk about Oscar worthiness for Hugh Jackman/Allison Janney, perhaps that's true, but the film itself is a stinker.
Here are my thoughts on all the DC Animated Movies I've watched in quarantine!
I'll sum it up by saying that there were some bad ones mixed in, but I felt like there were 5 good to great movies for every weak one. I had a blast watching through all of these.
Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993) = This is a re-watch obviously, and technically not a straight to video film as it did get a theatrical release (I was there!) but it is worth repeating that this is arguably the best Batman movie ever made. The way it delves into Bruce’s history a little bit more adds an extra layer of tragedy to the Batman tale, it gives you all the emotion and mystery you would want. It is also, at its core, a detective story, which is shockingly rare for Batman movies. Oh, and Mark Hamill’s Joker is done to perfection here. I wish they had handled the ending slightly better, but overall, it’s a masterpiece. 9.5/10
Batman and Mr. Freeze: Subzero (1997) = This is another rewatch and a film I have a soft spot for as it does mark the final time we get the classic TAS design to Batman as after this they would change it up to make it closer to Superman’s animated series. There is some awkward CGI included, but overall, it feels like another episode of TAS, and I appreciate that. Mr. Freeze also gets a better sendoff here than he did in the previous episode he appeared in (which they immediately ruined with his return in the next season of the series and then fixed again with his appearance in Batman Beyond) and its an overall solid movie. Its not fantastic and I would even argue there are many episodes of TAS that are many more worth checking out, but this still works well. I guess you could say it is the finale to the classic Animated series, and for that, its worth a look. 7/10
Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (2001) = Considering I liked Batman Beyond a lot and The Joker is, well, The Joker, this movie was very exciting, and even with those high standards, it still managed to surpass my expectations. The Batman/Joker flashback sequences is one of the most chilling things I’ve ever seen. There is a lot more to the movie than the flashback though as it captures the best elements of Batman Beyond, gives Terry the major spotlight interacting with his mentor’s greatest foe, and there is enough mystery to keep me invested all the way through. Also, dare I say it, but this movie probably has Mark Hamill’s best Joker performance. That’s a heavy boast, but its definitely up there. Like Mask of the Phantasm, this is one I’ve viewed quite a bit, and it never ceases to entertain. 9/10
Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman (2003) = I remember watching this back in college and not liking it, and yeah, its pretty unremarkable. I can forgive not getting all the original voice actors to come back (David Ogden Stiers isn’t as good at Penguin as Paul Williams was, but again, I’ll let it slide). But the movie is just lacking the darkness, charm, and intrigue that the classic series had. It feels like people who had never written for Batman: TAS suddenly got control of it, and we get a dull two parter that fails to live up to what came before. There is an awkward romance that kind of carries the film and I just found it to be boring. The only things this movie has going for it are 1) Bane is in it 2) The identity of the Batwoman was actually a neat surprise and 3) That “Betcha Never” song is kinda of catchy. The movie is not exceedingly terrible or anything…it just feels empty. 5/10
Batman: Chase Me (2003) = This short was included on the original DVD release of Mystery of the Batwoman and is actually much better than the movie. It’s short (roughly 6 minutes), and has no dialogue. Its just Batman chasing Catwoman, a typical outing for them. It is fun, exciting, well animated, and the visual complement the music they play with it. Catwoman is a character they struggled with in TAS (probably the only major character they had trouble getting right), so this kind of works as the definitive Catwoman outing of the DCAU, at least to me. 9/10
Batman Vs. Dracula (2005) = This is a movie that stems from “The Batman” the first animated Batman series following the DCAU with a new cast and crew working on it. Full disclosure, I was never a huge fan of that show. TAS casts a pretty big shadow and after that series, it was hard for me to accept this effort which felt like it was trying too hard to be “cool” at times (look at the designs of characters like Joker, Mr. Freeze, and Riddler) when TAS did it effortlessly. That said, this movie wasn’t half bad! They took a character from the public domain an put him up against Batman…hey if Buffy the Vampire Slayer can do it, why not Batman? It has some fun with it too with some fun cheesy lines, but parts of it are also kind of creepy as they use the vampire lore to great effect. Vampire Joker is both funny and kind of creepy as well. It isn’t mind blowing or anything and it didn’t necessarily make me want to watch more of The Batman, but as a film that could have easily turned stupid, this actually made for a fun viewing. 7/10.
Superman: Brainiac Attacks (2006) = Okay now this one I had never seen before, but I remember hearing it was awful. But how bad could it be? The show was very good, and is one of my favorite versions of Superman. How much could they screw up a return to that series? Well the first big problem rears its ugly head right off the bat when I hear Lex Luthor’s voice…it ain’t Clancy Brown and its jarring to say the least. I mean I’ll accept a cast change, but losing Clancy Brown for the DCAU Luthor is akin to losing Hamill as The Joker. It doesn’t feel right. They also changed his character here to make him kind of a joke spewing doofus. It kind of blew me away as much as it irritated me.
Disrespect to Lex aside, the movie is still not great. Its about as basic a Superman story as you can have: Lois-Clark romance subplot + Brainiac shows up and blows stuff up + They fight + Luthor cracks jokes, and its just that the whole movie. If they had made a new age updated Superman Fleischer short and kept it down to 12 minutes or so, I’d have liked it a lot more. Instead, it just feels like a typical Saturday morning cartoon stretched out way too long (The Jimmy Olsen subplot…Jesus) and combines a bunch of elements people know about Superman. Still, the animation looks nice, and we still have Daly as Superman and Delaney as Lois Lane, so there’s that. It wasn’t as bad as people told me it was (outside of Luthor’s portrayal) but it still falls flat. 4/10
Teen Titans: Trouble in Tokyo (2007) = I loved the Teen Titans show back when it came out…the less said about Teen Titans Go, the better. But incredibly, I never actually saw this, so this was a nice revisit and a new experience all wrapped into one. It had the action and comedy of the series, and the Tokyo setting allowed for some fun gags and more excuses to embrace the style of the show. The characters are fun and finally watching this after experiencing Teen Titans Go felt like a breath of fresh air and reminded me of why I liked the original show to begin with. I won’t say this is as good as the best episodes of the show (the identity of the mystery villain is super obvious) and outside of Robin and Starfire, the Titans don’t get much to do outside of gags, but as more (good) Teen Titans material, it works just fine. 7/10
Superman: Doomsday (2007) = This is another rewatch as I saw this one back when it first came out. This is a loose-ish telling of Death/Return of Superman, and to that end, it is enjoyable enough. It’s a bit edgier than the DCAU version of Superman, which would help shape future releases for DC’s straight to video films. Some of the voice acting is a little off and there are elements of the original story I wish were include (Where’s Cyborg Superman?) but overall, it is a good telling of the story. 7/10
Justice League: The New Frontier (2008) = New Frontier is one of my favorite JLA comics and I remember really liking this movie, so I felt it was worth a rewatch. Fortunately, it holds up very well. Using the 1950s, post Korean War time frame allows for a nice period piece for all the classic heroes, and the retro look and feel of everything is just fantastic (I especially love the classic Superman look). They also use the setting to cover some of the darker elements of the time period as well. The main heroes all get their time to shine, with Hal Jordan being my favorite of the film (since he’s one of the few that gets an origin story in the movie), and I also got a kick out of Batman and Martian Manhunter having their little detective story. Also, LUCY LAWLESS IS WONDER WOMAN!!! Yay! My only real knock is the antagonist of the film is shrouded in mystery but the reveal of what It is...eh. It isn’t bad, but it doesn’t quite live up to the mystery. Still, the film is a ton of fun and well worth a watch. Oh, and check out the fantastic closing montage. 8/10
Wonder Woman (2009) = This is also a rewatch and I LOVED this one when it first came out. However, I wanted to revisit it, because I wasn’t sure if it would hold up as well now that we have gotten the Gal Gadot live action film. Since this is also an origin story for Wonder Woman, there is a basis to really compare the two. There are aspects I prefer about the live action film, such as the WW1 time period setting, and the well fleshed out relationship between Diana and Steve. However, this film gets points for its great animation, violence, intensity, and stronger dedication to the Greek Mythology aspect of Wonder Woman’s origins. Also, Ares is handled much better here than he was in the live action film. Keri Russel also makes a good voice for Wonder Woman, as well as Nathan Fillion for Steve Trevor. Which is better? This or the live action film? It’s a flip a coin, take your pick scenario. Regardless, if you love WW, then I highly recommend this one. 9/10.
Tales from the Black Freighter (2009) = Having read Watchmen and seen the movie, this release is one I appreciated. Tales from the Black Freighter was a big part of the comic. The comic within a comic helped to show parallels and foreshadowing to the events of the main story, and its hard to picture Watchmen without it. Since it wasn’t in the Zack Snyder movie, it was nice to get this little companion piece to go with it. However, because I watched it straight without being intercut into the main story (See the Ultimate Cut of Watchmen for that), this animated version of Black Freighter doesn’t quite hold the same weight. Its neat, it looks cool (they captured the look of the comic pretty well), and I’m glad they made it, but it works better when woven into Watchmen than it does as a standalone. It isn’t what I’d call a “must see” but if you like Watchmen, you’ll get a kick out of it. Its also less than half an hour long, which makes it a fairly quick watch as well. 7/10
Green Lantern: First Flight (2009) = The origin story of Hal Jordan becoming a Green Lantern is a fun subject for a movie. And as it turns out, yeah, its good! My only real problem is that Hal’s journey to become a member of the Green Lantern Corps is…non existent. He gets the ring in the first scene and the rest of the movie is off Earth. Getting to the Corps that fast makes the movie feel rushed, but most of these DC movies keep it in that 75 minute time frame, and this one is no exception, so I let it slide. There are a few other issues as well, like Sinestro being a little too obvious as the bad guy, even if you don’t know the comics. And because everything is kind of fast paced, there is a ton of exposition flown out there super quickly. However, it is fun to see all the different Green Lanterns in a movie together, its well animated, there’s a pretty good twist towards the end, and the action is fun. And when everything kicks into high gear for the climax, things do get pretty dramatic. The overall film does have kind of a Top Gun feel to it too as Hal gets his training throughout. So yeah, a little rushed and clunky, but overall exciting and fun. And hey, compared to the Green Lantern live action movie, this is a masterpiece. 7/10
Superman/Batman: Public Enemies (2009) = I like the premise for this one more than the execution. Batman and Superman on the lam escaping the law after Superman is framed for murder? That sounds fantastic. The problem though is that the film boils down to just one fight after another and it got to the point where I felt like I was watching someone play a video game. Batman/Superman have cut scene, then someone shows up to fight them, then they fight…move on to next scene. And that’s the cycle of the whole film until its over. It also felt like they are trying to cram as many characters into this as they possibly could, and by the end, it just felt too crowded. No harm is done I guess. It looks nice, it isn’t that long, and I wasn’t bored. But the whole experience just felt empty to me. 5/10
Batman: Under the Red Hood (2010) = This was a rewatch and the first time I saw it, I thought it was awesome. Fortunately, it holds up very well. Its not quite as good as Mask of the Phantasm overall but shares a similar story. While MOTP had a better mystery, I felt like this movie handled its climax in a more satisfying way. It works in Death in the Family and the Jason Todd storyline well, and DiMaggio’s Joker is very very good. One issue I do have is Black Mask’s portrayal as he has a Yosemite Sam style personality that seems to clash with the rest of the film. All in all though, this is great and one of DC’s better home video releases. 9/10
Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths (2010) = I loved this one back when I first saw it a decade ago and thankfully, it holds up. Despite not having the same voice actors, designs, or (in Green Lantern’s case) the same character, it feels like it could have been a story arc for the Justice League DCAU series, capturing the same action, excitement, and creativity of that show. Anytime a DC story gets into dimension hopping, it usually turns out pretty cool, and this is no exception. Here, we get to see the Justice League combat evil metahumans from another world that are similar, but not identical to them. I loved that they used different characters rather than the evil twin route, as it gives us the chance to enjoy the bad guys on their own without comparing them too closely to their heroic counterparts. The shining star here is Owlman, voiced wonderfully by James Woods. His nihilistic philosophy and determination to reach his goals made him the most interesting character in the movie, and his climactic showdown with Batman is the biggest highlight. The whole film is exciting as well, and filled with great action, character moments, and even little Easter eggs as we see classic DC characters twisted to fit in the alternate Earth. Crisis of Two Earths is one of my personal favorites! 9/10
Superman/Batman Apocalypse (2010) = I wasn’t the biggest fan of Public Enemies, and since this one is a direct sequel to that, I skipped this when it came out. Well I decided to give it a chance, and since it details the arrival of Supergirl and the ensuing conflict with Darkseid, I figured it would be better, and, yeah, it is. Interestingly, Wonder Woman also plays a big role in this, so instead of Batman and Superman, its really the DC Trinity on display as the main heroes, which is pretty cool. Its also nice to have a good chunk of the DCAU voice actors back for this (including Ed Asner as Granny Goodness, lol). It isn’t without flaws though as parts of it feel rushed, with big sudden time skips, Big Barda changing her mind was extremely sudden, but nothing that significantly drags the film down. Including Darkseid in this makes the movie feel bigger, and his battle of wills with Batman make the movie worth it. It isn’t a perfect movie by any means, and given the characters involved, it should probably be better, but it’s a solid watch nonetheless. 7/10
All Star Superman (2011) = Grant Morrison’s All Star Superman is probably my favorite Superman comic ever, and its got a premise that I would LOVE to see as a movie, so I figured the animated adaptation would be right up my alley. Fortunately its pretty good. It isn’t a 100% faithful adaptation, which I think is a plus. I like having differences between the source and the adaptation so that both feel like different experiences. Not all the changes work because they added a lot of action to a story that isn’t really an action driven story, but the spirit of the comic is intact, which is all I wanted. I still say the comic is stronger, but this is a solid companion piece/off shoot to it. 7.5/10
Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (2011) = Basically, this movie was just a bunch of short stories about individual Lanterns that Hal (voiced by Nathan Fillion) tells to a rookie Lantern with a loose framing device to connect all the stories together. For that, it was cool and fun. The Green Lantern Corps has a few great individual characters so giving some of them the spotlight in their own neat little stories is fun. They focused on some of my favorites like Kilowog and Mogo. Kilowog wasn’t given the best voice actor this time around, but I can live with it. This movie probably works best if you want a basic look at some of the other Lanterns outside of Earth or are a fan of those characters. As is, it is a fun watch for what it is. 7/10
Batman: Year One (2011) = As a fan of the comic, I was looking forward to seeing this film, but didn’t get around to it until now. Fortunately, it is quite good and a faithful adaptation with great visuals and effectively capturing the spirit of its source material. We get Bryan Cranston as Gordon, which is awesome. The rest of the voice acting is good, except unfortunately for Ben McKenzie who is inconsistent as Batman. The story itself doesn’t deviate much at all, so if you’ve read it, you’ve basically seen this, but it effectively captures the book’s best moments. Its also slightly shorter than most of the other DC films, so it’s a nice quick watch as well. 8.5/10
Justice League: Doom (2012) = I watched this when it was first released. It is loosely based on my favorite JLA story “Tower of Babel”, and its very very good. It helps that several cast members from the Justice League cartoon series are back for this, and its also different enough from Tower of Babel to stand on its own. The cast of villains they picked for “The Legion of Doom” is a pretty good set of characters too. It’s a great and dramatic story that takes advantage of its premise and puts all the heroes in a dire situation. Its one of the better DC animated films for me. 9/10
Superman Vs. The Elite (2012) = I had never heard of this one before embarking on watching all of these films, so I was hoping it was kind of a hidden gem among the pack. Its based off of “What’s So Funny About Truth, Justice, and the American Way?”, but I’ve never read that, so I can’t compare the two. The movie tackles the idea of Superman being old fashioned in the modern world. He won’t kill, but the world wants him too. He wants to stick to his ideals, but the world wants him to get his hands a little dirty. The Elite shows up and provides a more hard nosed and darker take against the law breakers. This almost feels like a response to Man of Steel, but this predates that film by a year. Instead, it works nicely as a response to criticisms towards Superman being corny and lame, and using The Elite as sort of a cooler but harsher alternative to illustrate why Superman works. It gives this movie more meat to it than I was expecting, and it was a good way to showcase Superman’s ideals, and The Elite makes for a great group of baddies, especially the leader Manchester Black. There were a couple of issues here and there (like how Black showed Superman his back story via telepathy, but still narrated the whole thing), but they are largely minor. The action is quite good too, and the ending was really well done. This one was a nice surprise! 8.5/10
The Dark Knight Returns Parts 1 and 2 (2013) = Simply put, do you like The Dark Knight Returns comic? If you’re like most people, and the obvious answer is yes. And if it is yes, then you’ll most likely enjoy this two part movie. Its almost a perfectly straight adaptation of the Frank Miller graphic novel, and captures most of the moments of the novel without sacrificing the meaning behind them. Honestly, the biggest criticism I can levy at this is that it is so close to the graphic novel, I wonder if my time would be better spent re-reading it instead? Anyways, one aspect I do love that sets it apart from the graphic novel is that we have Robocop himself voicing the aged Batman, which is just perfect. They also capture the newsroom portions of the novel pretty flawlessly. Part 1 really came through in all the set up, and making The Mutants downright terrifying, and Part 2 delivers one of the best animated Joker/Batman confrontations I’ve ever seen (and this is without Conroy and Hamill). Overall, if you want a straightforward adaptation of one of the most famous Batman stories, Parts 1 and 2 come highly recommended. 9.5/10 for Part 1 and 9.5/10 for Part 2
Superman: Unbound = This is based on the comic “Superman: Brainiac” which I’ve never read, so again, this one I have to look at on its own rather than compare it. Anyways, I thought this one was, overall, solid. It’s a basic showing of what Brainiac is all about, and we get Supergirl and the City of Candor worked in, and that’s neat. Supergirl has something akin to PTSD regarding her past experiences with Brainiac, and that’s interesting but it never quite paid off for me. I don’t know if it was the voice acting or the writing, but it felt like she was scared to act rather than haunted by her past. There are some pretty intense and violent moments though, and the voice acting is mostly fun. Also, the way Superman defeats Brainiac was pleasantly different from the standard “Punch it till it blows up!” type of deal. If you were disappointed with Brainiac Attacks, this one works better. 7/10
Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox (2013) = Finally! We get one of these starring The Flash, and they picked a perfect story to cover for this. This “It’s a Wonderful Life” type of a story provides a ton of emotional and exciting possibilities, and this movie takes advantage of the premise. Its fun to see which characters changed in this new timeline and how drastically they did. It goes into some pretty dark territories with the characters, but that only makes it more interesting and engaging. It is also great to have Flash, the one who remembers the past and better world, as the voice of optimism in a much darker time. This movie captured the spirit of its source material and provides a dark ride in the process. I should note that although this isn't the first movie in the timeline, it is the first movie in the continuity that we would see origins for in JL: War and end with this year's Apokolips War. 9/10
Justice League: War (2014) = Well I’ll say this. As a movie about the first team up of the Justice League, it certainly works better than the live action film. That much is clear. It follows the same structure of that movie (minus the Superman resurrection) as the JL comes together one by one to address the growing threat of Apokolips and Darkseid's armies. As the true origin of an ongoing continuity, It is well animated and has some well crafted action sequences. However, I did have some issues with some of the set ups for the characters. Wonder Woman in particular was perplexing. She arrives in DC and is being protested…but we’re never shown why exactly. She was also kind of written like MCU Thor in his first movie, which I guess makes sense, but kind of goes against other versions I prefer. Cyborg’s back story makes his dad look like a total ass, and Billy Baxter feels like an unlikable little dickhead of a kid. Yeah yeah, I know, redemption and all that, but they grated on me more than anything else. Green Lantern is the quip machine, which gets a little grating at times, and Superman’s attitude is more violent and cocky, which is a little off too. Still, I like the idea of this thread uniting all the JL members and they all converge to take on Darkseid, and some of the action and interactions between the characters work. Batman and Green Lantern have some fun moments and turn out to be the best pairing in the film. Darkseid never goes past generic “I want to blow up the world” big monster man, but the threat feels legit as his forces over power the heroes pretty easily at first. It is a fun watch, and I think I’d enjoy it more if it were a TV pilot instead of a movie. Its fine, but could have been better. 6.5/10
Son of Batman (2014) = Considering Damien has become “the” Robin for more media these days, it is nice to get an animated adaptation of Batman’s introduction to his young son. And it was very good to boot. Not only was the action stellar and well animated, but the core story of Batman bonding with the son he never knew gives the movie a nice emotional center with Batman trying to take the rougher edges off of Damien. Its cool to see their two viewpoints clash with each other. Its also cool that Deathstroke is the antagonist as opposed to someone more obvious like Ra’s or The Joker. And heck, we got Killer Croc and Man Bat thrown in for good measure, so that’s neat. This one was very good and if Damien is your favorite Robin, then check this one out! 9/10
Batman: Assault on Arkham (2014) = So this movie is apparently set in the same universe as the Arkham games…that’s cool! I guess it’s a bit much to make a movie that’s connected to video games the potential audience hasn’t played, but then again, these DC movies aren’t made for general audiences. They are made for fans by fans, so a project like this is pretty exciting. We also get the Suicide Squad/Task Force X worked in, and it’s a pretty neat crew (though I’m not a huge fan of King Shark’s design in this). We get an Arkham video game movie AND a better Suicide Squad movie than the actual Suicide Squad movie, lol. They got CCH Pounder to return as Amanda Waller, which made me happy. There are a couple of odd and random moments thrown in that don’t really work (like Harley using “Yahtzee!” as a catchphrase), but overall, we get some aspects of the Arkham games mixed in with an Ocean’s 11 heist film style of Suicide Squad story, so it makes for a fun watch. 7/10
Justice League: Throne of Atlantis (2015) = About time we got an Aquaman centered story for one of these movies. This is the same JL Team from “Justice League: War”, so its nice to see how the relationships have grown since the events of that film. And I actually really like this version of Cyborg. There was a two parter on the old JL show that covered the idea of Atlantis exposing itself to the outside world, and Aquaman being integrated into the continuity. I feel like that two parter did it better, but this was still solid. The movie hits a lot of the same beats as the Aquaman movie that came out a few years later, but does it quicker and with the rest of the League thrown in, so it is more fun to watch, despite feeling a tad rushed at points. And hey, Aquaman doesn’t always get a lot of love, so it was nice to see it just to have some focus on him. 7/10
Batman Vs. Robin (2015) = Picking up where Son of Batman left off, we get to see how Bruce and Damien’s father/son relationship is going. And wouldn’t you know it, the little assassin isn’t blending too well with his stern and inflexible daddy, lol. The movie wonderfully incorporates The Court of Owls concept into a narrative with plenty of twists, turns, and an air of mystery throughout the entire thing but at its core, it is a movie about the relationship between a father and son, and it works very well. It follows up on Son of Batman well and I’d argue it even slightly surpasses it. Also, Talon is a great character and a great source of temptation for Damien as at first glance, he seems like a better match for Damien. My only knock is that I found it a little odd that The Court of Owls knew everything about Bruce Wayne and knew Batman’s every move…yet somehow didn’t know they were the same person, lol. Still, this is an excellent entry that explores the relationship between Bruce and Damien and gives us some Batman goodness along the way. 9/10
Justice League: Gods and Monsters (2015) = Here we get to see different takes on Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman in an alternate universe that uses various other DC characters to help fill out the world. With a vampire Batman, a Superman born of General Zod’s DNA, and a Wonder Woman with ties to Darkseid, it is all pretty intriguing to see these harsher versions of the heroes. Its creative, fun, and uses ones knowledge of the DC Universe to create nice little twists and turns in this radically changes universe. The origin stories of the heroes themselves (especially Wonder Woman’s) are really interesting to see and its clear a lot of thought was put into it. There is also a nice murder mystery story in there to give it purpose. Its uniquely strange, and with Bruce Timm’s designs and animation on display, it was a delight to watch. I still prefer stories about the classic versions of these characters, but as a break from the norm, it was a breath of fresh air. 8/10.
Batman: Bad Blood (2016) = Picking up where “Batman Vs. Robin” left off, we get this showcase of the Bat Family. Here, Bruce Wayne disappears after a violent encounter with The Heretic, and in his absence, Nightwing/Dick Greyson takes over as the new Batman, Robin (Damien) returns from his trip of self-discovery to help, while new Bat-clad heroes join the fray. I really liked this set up as its kind of like the Batman version of the fallout of “Death of Superman” where the death/absence of the hero leads to the emergence of characters inspired by the icon. Its weird to see a Batman movie where Batman isn’t really in it that much, but I really enjoyed all the Bat characters (all with baggage) interacting and coming together to fill the void in Bruce’s absence. The action as usual is well done and having the less experienced Bat-heroes save the day gives everything a different flavor. There is also a pretty good reveal in there too. So yeah, this is another entry in the “Damien” movies, I guess I’ll call them, and another damned good one. 9/10
Justice League Vs. Teen Titans (2016) = Well, we got Batman Vs. Robin, so the next logical step is the whole Justice League Vs. The Teen Titans, right? It is kind of neat to finally see Damien Wayne interact with the version of the Justice League we’ve seen in a few movies up to this point. Its also awesome that the Teen Titans get worked into this universe as well. They work in the Trigon storyline as a way to brainwash the League, give Raven an important role, and allow for a situation where the kids have to face the adult team. At its core though, the movie’s really about Damien learning to lighten up and make friends with kids his own age and learning about teamwork and all that stuff…awwww. Now with two teams of heroes to focus on and less than an hour and a half run time, that is a lot to balance. Its really more of a Teen Titans movie with the Justice League as guests (Green Lantern, Shazam, and Aquaman are completely absent). It feels a little rushed at point, and unfortunately, the voice actress for Raven isn’t the best, which is distracting since she plays such a big part in it. Its still a fun watch though, and seeing all these characters interact is delightful. Also, these movies really got me attached to Damien Wayne, even if he is an asshole, lol. Not the best, but still an exciting and fun entry. 7/10.
Batman: The Killing Joke (2016) = This is one of the weirdest releases of any of the DC animated films. You’d think just a straight adaptation of The Killing Joke would be enough. Sure it’d be short but maybe they could have done a couple one shot stories and bundled them all together into one release. That might have worked, but what we got instead was odd. The first half hour or so being focused on a side story with Batgirl is just baffling. Its even weirder that the tone, story, and dialogue of that first half hour in no way match The Killing Joke material, so it just stands out like a sore thumb. Now when you get to Mark Hamill reading Alan Moore’s classic dialogue, that is great to hear and makes it worth watching at least once, but good Lord I’ll never understand why they felt the need to pad it. The actual Killing Joke material adaptation is fairly straight forward and it works because of Hamill and Conroy reading those famous lines. So, I guess I say, check it out, but skip that first act. 6/10
Batman: Return of the Caped Crusader (2016) = Adam West (RIP), Burt Ward, and Julie Newmar return to play their iconic roles from the original Batman TV series in an animated romp. That’s all I needed to know! For many, including myself, Adam West was their first Batman, so something like this was a treat. I had a goofy grin on my face the entire time watching this, beginning with a sweet introduction using the classic theme. It was great listening to West, Ward, and Newmar play their roles again, and the sound alikes for the other characters were fine as well. The animated format also allows more room to embrace the silliness of the old show too and embellish things a little bit more. There’s also an element of the story where Batman embraces his darker side, and seeing the dark side of the Adam West Batman is actually hilarious. The story is a bit unfocused as the direction of it changes a few times, but its all so much fun, that it’s a blast just to watch it all go down. This is delightful and if you’re a fan of the old show, its worth a watch 7.5/10
Justice League Dark (2017) = I am a fan of Justice League Dark. How can I not be? I love monsters, the supernatural and superheroes, and they are a mix of all of that. So I was really excited to see this one and hoped to God it would be a good representation of the team. And…it is! I wish Batman wasn’t as heavily featured in the film as it would have allowed a little more focus on the true members of JLD (would have liked to see more of Swamp Thing for example), but what we get from them is generally entertaining and cool. It was cool to see Deadman, Constantine, Zatanna, and Etrigan get to shine. It’s a little spookier and more focused on the supernatural than most of these DC movies, so I got what I wanted out of it. 7.5/10
Teen Titans: Judas Contract (2017) = Following the Titans we were introduced to in JL Vs. TT, we get this little gem. It works in some characters like Brother Blood and Terra, and we get some nice focus on the individual Titans to boot. I also liked seeing a movie with Damien and Nightwing completely away from Batman and allowed to shine on their own a little bit. The movie does drag in places, but it comes through with the goods when it counts, with the individual Titans getting to shine a little bit more. Can’t ask for more than that. 7.5/10.
Batman Vs. Two Face (2017) = One final time, we get Adam West playing Batman, and what a way to go out! Return of the Caped Crusader gave us a nostalgic romp that captured the feel of the old show with the animated format allowing a little bit more exaggeration. Here, they brought us back into the world and added to it! Two Face is probably the most significant Batman villain of the era to not be featured in the Adam West series, so to get a taste of what that might have been like (With William Shatner doing the voice! YES!) is just wonderful. We even get to see Two Face’s origin in this Bat-universe, and origin stories weren’t common in the old series. The movie also includes Hugo Strange and Harley Quinn in this world as well, which only adds to the fun. Burt Ward, Julie Newmar, and even Lee Merriweather lend their voices to the film as well. But at the end of the day, its West’s final performance as Batman that makes it special. If you’re a fan of the original show, the two animated returns are definitely worth a look, and this is the better of the two. 8.5/10
Batman and Harley Quinn (2017) = This was…awful. There’s no getting around it. Its bad. Its made even worse by the fact that it tries to go back to the animated series and the DCAU style (even getting Conroy to play Batman and Lester to play Nightwing) but taking it in a more comedic direction. Now the Batman TAS was funny at times, and when it went for comedy, it usually succeeded, especially with Harley Quinn. This movie borrows a lot from classic TAS episode “Harlequinade” where Harley is partnered up with Batman, but this is so unfunny while trying so hard to be funny, that it just comes off as annoying. Truthfully, you’re better off watching any Harley centric episode of TAS. 3/10
Batman: Gotham by Gaslight (2018) = Based off the comic of the same name, this movie gives us a 19th century Batman going up against Jack the Ripper! Um…YES! Of all the DC heroes, Batman is the best fit for period piece stories like this, and I was all on board. The time period and Victorian setting complement Batman perfectly, and its cool to see how all the different characters are portrayed in this setting. Selina Kyle is particularly interesting with this premise, as is what they go with for Dick Greyson, Jason Todd, and Tim Drake. The crimes of Jack the Ripper are also pretty brutal, and it makes for a tense and engaging mystery. The action also perfectly complements the movie’s old fashioned setting. I have more of an old soul, so seeing something like this really worked for me. 8/10
Suicide Squad: Hell to Pay (2018) = To the surprise of absolutely no one, this is yet another animated adaptation that is better than its live action counterpart. It somehow manages to be shorter than the live action film, yet feature way more characters and make the story feel more complete. I think it helps that Deadshot was the clear cut focus as the emotional core of the movie, and the story’s mcguffin, a literal magic “Get out of Hell” card provided lots of room for backstabbing and constant fighting over the card. Its sort of got a “It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World” caper style story vibe going for it…just with lots of blood and guts and swearing. It’s gritty and dirty with the right sense of humor and balancing of the characters on display. 7.5/10
Batman Ninja (2018) = Now this one is interesting as it was made by Japanese directors and animators, giving Batman an anime flare. Also interesting, people told me to avoid this one like the plague and said it was awful, but with a title like Batman Ninja, I couldn’t help but to at least give it a peek. I should note that I watched it in English, so I don’t know if that makes a difference or not. I will say that the film looks interesting and cool in places, and is an interesting experiment overall. However, the story is a complete mess, and parts of it are very grating (I really didn’t like this version of The Joker, but again, that might be because I saw it in English). The animation changes styles during the film and that is just jarring and distracation. Also, I wish they had just simplified things and do what Gotham by Gaslight did, where they just made the time period the setting without having to work time travel and other stuff like that into the narrative. I like most of the character designs, and seeing a steam punk style Batman movie with mechs and a feudal Japan setting is cool, but like I said, the overall execution is sloppy and a little annoying. 5/10
The Death of Superman (2018) = We get one of the all time classic Superman stories adapted in with the version of the Justice League we were introduced to in Justice League War! Lets do this! This version of Superman hadn’t gotten too much of a spotlight in the JL outings in this series, so its nice to see him get the big focus here. And to be honest, it works beautifully. We had already gotten an adaptation of Death of Superman with Superman: Doomsday, but this movie surpasses it. What I loved was how much time we spent with Clark before the action kicks in. We see him interacting with his JL companions, his parents, Lois, and everything else, just painted the picture that he was a normal dude with normal problems, but has inspired and touched a bunch of people throughout his time as Superman. It really added to the emotional impact of his loss. The movie also set up characters like Hank Henshaw and John Henry Irons for the follow up, and its handled well. It is a great adaptation that works great given we had seen this version of the Justice League for several films now, and the movie holds more weight because of it. This is arguably the best Superman movie ever made, live action or animated. 9.5/10
Reign of the Supermen (2019) = Following up from the previous film, with Superman gone, 4 characters (The Cyborg Superman, Steel, Superboy, and The Eradicator) all arrive and try to claim his mantle. This follows what happened in the comics, and I still have vivid memories of playing SNES game back in the day, so it was cool to see these characters be the focus of a movie, while also showing the other characters’ reactions to all these new Supermen. It doesn’t have the emotional resonance of the previous film, and it probably tries to balance a little too much (an invasion from Darkseid is shoehorned into the middle of all of this), but the movie still manages to be exciting and a blast to watch. I was especially happy to have Steel and Cyborg Superman get major focus in one of these films. Like I said, not as good as Death of Superman, but a worthy follow up to it. 8/10
Justice League Vs. The Fatal Five (2019) = We are back to the style of the DCAU with some of the original voices back to boot! Its pretty cool to be back in this version of the DC universe with this animation style. That said, it isn’t spectacular or must see. Basically, its an okay episode of Justice League Unlimited with a Terminator style plot with bland villains. Also, if this is the DCAU continuity and The Legion of Superheroes of the 31st Century factor into this story, then where is Kara/Supergirl? There are episodes of the old series I’d recommend over this. Still, for what it is, its fun and feels like it would belong in an old DCAU series (though with cursing and violence to spice it up). Star Boy is makes for an interesting character given his mental disorder makes him a very different kind of superhero. So yeah, if you want more DCAU, then check this out. It’s a solid return for that style, if not a glorious one. 6.5/10
Batman: Hush (2019) = I was super excited to see this one as Hush is one of my personal favorite Batman comics, and to see it worked into the ongoing DC animated movie continuity had me intrigued. This adaptation doesn’t follow the comic completely, but it follows the story structure enough to be satisfying. What makes it work well is the Batman/Catwoman dynamic as we see them involved in unraveling the mystery behind Hush, who is realized well in animated form. We also see them grow closer personally, which gives the film a nice emotional core to carry it amidst the large cast of side characters woven into it. Its cool to see so many Batman villains in one movie, but the Catwoman/Batman relationship and the Hush mystery are the main driving forces. I won’t spoil it here, but the reveal of who Hush is does deviate from the comic, but I liked what they ended up doing. I could see purists not liking it, and I understand why, but for me it worked. There are some minor issues here and there, like some characters being brought in and dropped out quicker than a hiccup, like Batgirl and Lex Luthor. Anyways, I’d say overall I prefer the comic, but this was a very enjoyable take on it. 8/10
Batman Vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2019) = Here we go! The greatest crossover that we never knew we wanted. Batman and the Turtles! I read the 1st crossover comic a while back, and that was a hoot, so to get this movie was even more of a treat. I like the movie took the approach of not having cross dimensional stuff, and just let the characters exist in the same world. The real delight here is watching the different characters interact, whether it be the Turtles fighting Batman villains, Batman dueling with The Shredder, or all the heroes interacting, this whole thing is awesome from start to finish. I especially liked having Ra’s Al Ghul team with Shredder which fits perfectly, and I also got a kick out of Mikey’s interactions with Alfred, and Donatello (my favorite Turtle) and Batgirl finding common ground and being buddies. And of course the action in this is fantastic as well, and captures the best elements of what we’d expect from both Batman and The Turtles. If I have any criticisms, for all the characters they managed to work into this, it feels kind of wrong that April and Splinter (the two biggest characters in TMNT outside of the Turtles) weren’t anywhere to be seen. For its action, humor, and wonderful representation of both franchises, this crossover is about as good as anyone could hope for. 9/10
Wonder Woman: Bloodlines (2019) = We get a Wonder Woman movie showing the origin story…again. Apparently, this is also the same Wonder Woman that’s part of the greater continuity that started with JL War (Rosario Dawson does the voice again and she changes into the costume of that continuity). However, I’m not sure why they decided to redo Wonder Woman’s origin again, especially when the 2009 animated film is as good as it is. This movie focuses on Diana adjusting to the human world and its just…annoying. The family she lives with is…annoying, and it took almost 20 minutes to get to the title card of a 1hr and 22 min movie. Very weird. But then it goes in a different direction where Wonder Woman has a falling out with a member of her adopted family and it becomes a story of revenge and a family being torn about. It yields some solid moments, but everything in the set up is so rushed that nothing carries the appropriate emotional weight. Unfortunately, the movie is also littered with a bunch of one liners (especially from Steve Trevor, who won’t shut the hell up), and that gets distracting after a while. There are some good action sequences here and there, and I like some of the side characters, like Ferdinand the Minotaur. And there’s a giant Medusa in it…that’s pretty cool lol. Overall, its an OK watch, but because of its weird pace and underutilized elements, it is slightly disappointing. This is amplified because it is a Wonder Woman live action movie and the 2009 animamted film are so much better. 6/10
Superman: Red Son (2020) = This “What if” story tells us what Superman would be like if he had landed in Soviet Russia instead of good old Smallville, Kansas. I never read the comic this is based on, so I can only judge it as a film rather than an adaptation. As is, the set up is very interesting, and it is fascinating to see a Soviet Superman used as a tool for propaganda and later, a tool of influence to the entire world, while also encouraging a “Superman Arms Race” with the US (which results in an interesting take on Bizarro). We also get to see how other DC characters fit into this set up, and its interesting. Now, the movie lacks almost all subtlety as everyone is portrayed with pretty broad strokes, so the movie doesn’t act with the balanced approach it should have given the premise (I’ve heard the comic is better in this regard). Superman is, at times, comically stereotypical in his Russian portrayal, Batman is extremely one note, Wonder Woman’s hatred of all men also feels a bit forced, and the tacked on villain at the end seemed a bit silly. However, its is all still fun to watch given its premise, so points for that. It got me interesting to check out the comic in the future, so that counts for something. Interesting, but flawed is the best way I’d sum this movie up. 6.5/10
Justice League Dark: Apokolips War (2020) = I don't want to spoil anything about this movie...but believe me when I say it isn't a fun time. Oh its good. Really good and well made, but good God if you love these characters, its rough. This movie is like the closing scene of Infinity War had a baby with Transformers the Movie (the 86 animated film that is) and that baby grew up to be a spiteful mutant that relished in torturing people. It incorporates elements of Justice League, The Batman/Damien Wayne saga, The Teen Titans, The Suicide Squad, and Justice League Dark, providing a final blow off to the continuity of these films. The story does have some gaps in logic (how did Superman get back to Earth?), but the sheer balls of this film to put all of these heroes through the ringer creates a wild and unpredictable feeling through, and it is very well done. The threat of Darkseid has never been greater as his evil just infects the entire film. As a final entry for these DC films, it is intense and engaging, but good God don't go into this expecting a fun time. 8/10
Directed by Andrew Patterson. With Sierra McCormick, Jake Horowitz, Gail Cronauer, Bruce Davis. In the twilight of the 1950s, on one fateful night in New Mexico, young switchboard operator Fay and charismatic radio DJ Everett discover a strange audio frequency that could change their small town...
5/10 - I really wanted to like this film... but I waited and waited and nothing really happened. Great performances from the main 2 actors Sierra McCormick and Jake Horowitz.