As I’ve noted before in this very series, the idea of alternate timelines and universes and all their attendant paradoxes is largely what has prohibited me from becoming what one might describe as a “fan” of comic books, which some would consider a rather egregious oversight given my line of work. When I reviewed Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, another direct-to-DVD feature courtesy of Warner Bros. and DC, which also concerned a superhero team who ventured into a mirrored dimension to battle their doppelgangers, I expressed concerns about the futility of the endeavour, which I still hold. That movie surprised me, though, and it must be said that this one, which is based on the 2011 comic book crossover event “Flashpoint”, by Geoff Johns and Andy Kubert, surprised me just as much, if not more so.
A couple of reasons. The first, rather obvious one is that a standalone feature-film is a very different proposition from a concerted effort to mangle and merge a dozen characters’ established continuities. In comic books, these events are permanent – until, that is, the next one happens, or the whole line is arbitrarily rebooted, though even then the ostensibly clean slate still contains the sticky residue of versions past. It’s a nightmare. Something like Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox has the distinct advantage of having no obligation to a broader continuity. You can enjoy its hypothetical rearranging of DC’s stalwarts secure in the knowledge that by the time the credits roll, none of it will have mattered.
The second reason is that, unwieldy title notwithstanding, it isn’t a movie about the Justice League.
Continue reading Review – Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox
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This is Episode 51 of the Ready, Steady, Cut! Podcast. On this episode, with the upcoming release of The Dark Tower, we discuss the most adapted author of all time, Stephen King and what are considered to be his top three movie adaptations – The Shining, The Green Mile and The Shawshank Redemption.
Trailer Talk is Justice League and Thor: Ragnarok and as always, we answer questions raised by our listeners and play another game of You Can’t Beat Me!
Continue reading Ready Steady Cut EP51 – Stephen King Movies Special
The motion picture version of Mark Waid’s Justice League of America arc, JLA: Tower of Babel, from 2000, adapted for the screen by the late Dwayne McDuffie, who died shortly after finishing the script. It’s also a sort-of sequel to the rather good Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, retaining the same character designs, being set, I think, in the same universe, and providing another iteration of the tried-and-true team vs. team structure.
It is, I guess, but if Justice League: Doom accomplishes something tangible among the usual large-scale action these films are known for, it’s a darker treatment of the Justice League that pushes each member to their physical and emotional limits (and the film to the very brink of its PG-13 classification.) Ever wanted to see Batman get buried alive with his father’s bones, or Martian Manhunter perpetually immolate as he sweats flaming magnesium? Well, this is the movie for you.
Continue reading Review – Justice League: Doom
If there’s any one thing that has prevented me getting properly invested in comic-books over the last twenty-six years, it’s a profound fear of multiverses. Parallel timelines, alternate dimensions, crossovers – they all terrify me. It’s difficult enough to catch up with almost a century of stories that encompass a whole host of heroes and villains across two major comics companies. When you couple that with the crippling fear that at any moment the entire continuity could be detonated, it’s beloved characters jettisoned into nothingness or, worse still, smashed together with other, alternate versions of those characters, the point of getting into any of it starts to elude me. So, you’ll excuse me if Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, from its title alone, had me a little bit worried.
Continue reading Review – Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths
Justice League: The New Frontier doesn’t work on its own terms. I know this because when I watched the movie, the second of DC’s original animated features, I hadn’t read the source material, Darwyn Cooke’s 2004 six-issue limited series, also titled The New Frontier. I’ve read it now. And having done so it’s clear that the only thing the movie adaptation offers is a visually-faithful cliffs notes version of that story; it coasts on the appeal of seeing familiar panels, dialogue and scenarios transplanted onto the big screen, while excising a lot of the historical immediacy, interesting subplots and metatextual significance of its inspiration. If you haven’t read the story, and if there’s no thrill in seeing bits of it being made to move around on your television, then what’s left is a movie that feels shallow, messy and unsatisfying.
Continue reading Review – Justice League: The New Frontier
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This is the Podcast’s 25th Episode so we celebrate in style. We’d like to say thank you to our listeners who have joined us so far. You are making good life decisions. On this episode, we discuss The Equalizer (2014) and the career of the brilliant Denzel Washington. As it’s the 25th episode we have added new segments to the format which are Trailer Talk and Twitter Chat. Trailer Talk this week is Justice League and Twitter chat is ‘that annoying moment when someone steals your reserved cinema seat’. As always, we answer questions raised by our listeners and we do a quiz arranged by Laura the quiz master. We must apologise if you are confused at the start where we reference “FilmInk Film Thoughts Podcast” – we’ve recently gone through a rebrand.
00:00 25th Episode Announcement
02:05 iTunes Reviews
05:10 Trailer Talk – Justice League
10:37 Twitter Chat – Stolen Reserved Cinema Seats
15:10 Main Film Discussion – The Equalizer (2014)
1:11:50 Questions From Our Listeners
1:16:45 Denzel Washington Discussion
1:24:50 The Famous Quiz
1:38:17 Shoutouts, Plugins and Final Comments
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