Sunday, March 26, 2017

First trailer for Zack Snyder's 'Justice League' has hit the web

Even though the DC Cinematic Universe has a never-ending array of problems, Warner Bros. is still pushing forward with more films. After all, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad did make $873.2 million and $745.6 million at the worldwide box office, respectively. Things will kick off in June with the release of Wonder Woman, the first solo movie in the franchise since 2013's Man of Steel and the film that could possibly save the DCCU. But for fans, the big movie of the year is certainly Zack Snyder's Justice League, which will arrive in theaters on November 17. After the double dose of disappointment that came from Man of Steel and Dawn of Justice, there's a great deal of skepticism around DC's mega teamup movie. Can Snyder turn things around and develop a cohesive, entertaining superhero movie that delivers the goods? I don't know. I've counted myself as one of the defenders of the grim vision of Batman v Superman, but even I've struggled to get excited for a Justice League film in this current universe. WB launched the marketing campaign with a teaser at last year's Comic-Con, and yesterday, they released the first official trailer for the film. Here it is!

I've watched this trailer five or six times now. Not because I'm particularly excited for this, mind you, but because I'm still trying to figure out just what the hell is going on here. Okay, first let's dispel the rumor that Batman v Superman was bad because it was dark. No, that's not the case. If anything, its storytelling was monumentally flawed, but the tone was not the primary issue. So from the beginning, I've been highly skeptical of the idea that Justice League was completely flipping the script on the universe that Snyder started, aiming for a more fun, poppy version similar to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. We all saw how it worked out when WB tried to reverse course on David Ayer's Suicide Squad late in the process. Things did not end well. Justice League definitely looks more "fun," highlighted by a good Batman joke and an Aquaman who likes to shout things while riding on the Batmobile. I don't know if that sensibility will really translate to the final product, but I guess some meta humor is a good start.

But there's still so much wrong here. I remain convinced that Gal Gadot and Jason Momoa are the wrong actors for their respective characters. Cyborg's CGI looks absolutely ghastly, and while I'm sure post-production work will make things better, the design is just not good. I hate the entire idea of having the Justice League fight an army of demons, led by Steppenwolf, a villain that I know nearly nothing about. But most of all, this film just looks like an eyesore. If this trailer is any indication, Justice League is going to give me a serious headache. The big action scenes look like murky, poorly digitized CGI chaos, and I honestly couldn't tell you what was happening amid all the slow-mo and giant explosions. DC fans can defend these movies until the end of time itself, but Snyder's frenetic style will just never do it for me. I know this is just a trailer, but some of the scenes on display here look damn near incomprehensible.

On a side note, did anybody at DC (including Zack Snyder) think about the implications of killing Superman in Dawn of Justice? Seriously, we're going to have a Justice League movie where the Man of Steel is not a factor in any of the marketing and probably won't show up until the end of the movie. That's just insane to me, especially for a plot device that feels pointless at best.

Look, I want Justice League to be good. As a kid, I read more DC than Marvel. Batman is my favorite superhero, and some of my favorite superhero films star the Caped Crusader. I should be so excited for this film. But with the muddy visuals, shoddy action, and bizarre storyline, I just can't force myself to be interested. This looks like another DC misfire, and as much as I hope I'm wrong, they need to show me something very soon to prove that this will be great.

Justice League opens on November 17.

Image Credit: IMDB/WB

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