Batman (voice of Jason O’Mara) and other superheroes from the Justice League set out to investigate the violent murders of innocent citizens and fight against the evil powers.
Justice League Dark is an extremely bold animated film that attempts to do a lot of things and makes an effort trying to introduce viewers to a team that most people may not be familiar with. We know who the original Justice League consists of. Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Cyborg, and Flash. But most people do not know about Justice League Dark, which includes John Constantine, Zatanna, Deadman, Etrigan the Demon, Swamp Thing, and Black Orchid.
As big of a fan of DC Comics as I am, I have to be honest with you, not even I knew who the Justice League Dark team was. After watching the animated film of the same name directed by Jay Oliva, I have to say that I am definitely intrigued with this band of heroes, even if the film as a whole was a bit unsteady.
With a running time of a mere seventy five minutes, there are certainly some instances in which things feel extremely rushed and we don’t really get a lot of character moments here. It feels like a strange blend of magical action with some moments where the heroes pause and talk to each other. It felt a bit odd.
Perhaps the weakest element to Justice League Dark though, is the comedy. A lot of DC movies have comedy in them, and that doesn’t bother me. But the humor worked into this film just fell completely flat for me. Sometimes one of our heroes will say something that was intended to make the audience laugh, but instead, it just made my shake my head every single time. I don’t recall laughing a single time here which was so unfortunate.
But what really saves this film is the action, because it is a blast to watch. While it never reaches the exciting highs of the live-action DC Comics films, the action sequences here are definitely a lot of fun to watch and it is boosted by the fact that the film is animated really well. It is clear that the animation team spent a ton of time animating this film and I have to commend them for making a really good looking movie.
Aside from all of the action though, the thing that I loved the most here was the dynamic between John Constantine and Zatanna, our two lead protagonists. They were the only two characters that I felt were given any character development, which was a shame. But these two characters were truly great and I felt a connection with them. I wanted them to succeed, and the way they played off of one another was a delight to watch.
Although Justice League Dark has a muddled story, it saves itself with tons of fun action sequences and great animation.
Overall Grade: B-
MPAA Rating: R for some disturbing violence
Directed by: Jay Oliva
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
Release Date: January 24, 2017 (digital), February 7, 2017 (DVD and Blu-ray)
Running Time: 75 minutes