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Friday, 28 April 2017

Justice League Dark.


Justice League Dark.



Interesting factoid: Apparently the voice actor they got in for Constantine in this film was Matt Ryan, he who plays Constantine in live-action in both the short-lived series of the same name (which I dropped after one episode, but may pick up again some time), and in Arrow. The man's now played three different versions of Constantine, meaning the only actors who have probably played more versions of a single DC Comics character are Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill.



Justice League Dark takes place at some nebulous point within the DC Animated continuity, as people across the globe begin hallucinating that the people around them are demons. As the Justice League suspects that the reason might be magical, Batman seeks the help of Zatanna, Deadman, and Constantine to discover the source of the threat and neutralise it. Before long, they are joined by Jason Blood -- host to the demon Etrigan -- and discover that someone is using the Dreamstone, a magical artifact left behind by the evil sorcerer Destiny.

Like all of DC's Animated flicks, this film is on the shorter side, at a positively bitesize seventy-five minutes -- but unlike most of their flicks, it's not actually too badly paced, managing to jam in a decent amount of mystery, character development, backstory, and action into its short running time without feeling too rushed.

The gang. Well, the gang minus Constantine and Blood.

That pacing is about the only thing the film has that makes it stand out among its peers. It's not bad, I enjoyed it just as much as I enjoy all of DC's animated stuff, it's just that it's a chip off the same block as all the other films in this series: Some kind of threat appears, a team is formed, they have a few false positives as to who the culprit is, and then they all end up fighting some big bad.

As a mindless, pretty action film -- which is what all of these films are, and that's fine by me, since I love mindless, pretty action films -- it does its job, but having just seen The Judas Contract last week, it was a little odd to find myself watching what amounts to the exact same film with a different cast.

I feel like this is  really boring way to show someone's memories.

The film wins a few points for managing to set up a somewhat compelling mystery, but it's solved almost as soon as it appears, and the mystery isn't ever fleshed out enough for the pay-off to really have much impact. Similarly, it wins some points for actually managing to effectively sell Destiny, the big bad villain, as a threat in the final battle, by having him take down both Etrigan and Swamp Thing in fairly ruthless fashion.

There's really only one thing to say about this film, which is that if you like DC Animated films, you'll probably like this one. It's short, so watching it isn't exactly a massive commitment, and it's a pretty fun romp with some fun characters.

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