Three Reasons Why JUSTICE LEAGUE Movie Will Fail, And How Warner Bros Can Fix It

Three Reasons Why JUSTICE LEAGUE Movie Will Fail, And How Warner Bros Can Fix It

With all sorts of rumors flying about the Justice League's first trip to the silver screen, I take a look at the main reasons I believe this movie will not be the great film we all want and how, with a few changes, it can be.



Chances are that you've all heard of the upcoming Justice League movie and the rumors surrounding it. It will be WB/DC's answer to Marvel's The Avengers and their first attempt at a conjoined onscreen universe, starting with next year's Man of Steel. However, on their current path, this film is almost certainly doomed to fall apart before it can even get going. This list will discuss the major flaws in WB's plans and how to fix them.



NO SOLO MOVIES

Other than next year's Man of Steel, WB/DC will have no solo movies to introduce the characters and lead into the JL movie. This raises two major problems right off the bat. The first is that we will have no previous introduction to any character in this version of the DCU other than Superman. While some, like Batman, have had enough time in the spotlight for the general public to know the character; the likes of Wonder Woman and The Flash have never been in any movie to date. And while The Flash's back-story could be lazily explained in exposition, ("I got struck by lightning, I have superpowers.") A character like Wonder Woman can't strive off her name alone and needs a proper, and carefully handled, introduction; as opposed to: "Hey, I'm Wonder Woman. By the way, the Greek gods exist, Zeus is my father, I come from an ancient island of warrior women that have developed super strength over time and my whip is magic! What's your story, Batman?" The same applies to Aquaman, and his Atlantian history, if WB chooses to bring him in.

This leads into the second problem with a lack of solo movies: and undefined universe. One of the many things Marvel's movies did in leading up to The Avengers was they defined the universe's realm of possibility. The do's and don'ts. They set the scene in a scientifically advanced earth, introduced the existence of aliens, an explained how Thor's "magic" is more "advanced alien tech." This allowed for a near seamless juncture of the heroes, since the world they inhabited made sense for each of them. The same will not happen in Justice League. We will already have Superman's being an alien from another planet, which fits fine with Green Lantern, but will not blend well with Batman (especially with the Nolan version so fresh in people's minds) and Wonder Woman. The fix is simple: Make solo movies. Give a coherent background to each new character. (And make up your damn mind about whether or not to reboot Green Lantern.) An interesting idea I read somewhere: they can skip the Batman reboot for now, just have him play as the Nick Fury of this world and gather the team members to face a greater threat he has discovered. This leads to our next topic:



LACK OF CONVICTION

When Marvel decided to commit to its vision of an onscreen shared universe, they knew there would be no stopping that train. And yet, they went full steam ahead setting the first major plot points in Iron Man 2, even with their two riskiest films (Thor and Cap) on the horizon. If any of these movies flopped, the universe could come crumbling down. But they stuck by their guns. Hell, when Joss and pals first started filming Avengers, Captain America's first movie wasn't even released yet and here he was competing for the most screen time of all the characters. The point is: Marvel took a gamble and stuck by it, and all their hard work paid off big time.

The folks over at Warner don't seem so confident in themselves. They hope to recreate the success of The Avengers without putting in any on the risks or work. One of the reasons we haven't gotten any major news about the film is because they're waiting to see how Man of Steel plays out. They want to know how interested people are with Superman so they can decide how much of the film he should take up. The hesitation about the fate of Green Lantern (To retcon, or not to retcon...) proves this fact more. One of the reasons they're holding off on the solo movies is to see who people like more in JLA. Warner Brothers can't just change the plays as they happen and hope for the best, they need to construct a plan with a solid base and buildup and then stick to it. Otherwise the universe becomes a jumbled mess of retconed events and dead plot threads. Speaking of messes:



THE PLOT

I can see the plot of Justice League playing out in one of two ways. The first, and most probable, is that WB will stick to a safe formula instead of innovation. The film will focus on Batman and Superman and... not much else. Batman and Superman are DC's most well known and loved characters, so they will put them at the forefront of the film and push everybody else to the side. Sure, Flash may have a badass moment or two, and Green Lantern's comments will be funny, but other than that, they will be cardboard cutouts there only to enhance to scale of the film. The bulk of the character development will focus on Superman and Batman's differing views of how to lead the team, attack the enemy, the importance of Earth, self sacrifice, ect, ect, ect. The rest of the crew (save maybe Wonder Woman becoming a romantic interest) will have almost no sway in the events that are going on and will only be there to increase the CGI fireworks show at the end. Which begs the question: Wouldn't a Superman/Batman team-up be a much better option at this point? At least until they get the universe up and running properly.

Option B is that they try to include everything. Every character's background (in some way or another), their personal development, the villain's development, their team relationship, the people they care for, and more. And this will obviously be a disaster. To pull this off, they'd need a genius/madman to write it and a time window of 4-5 hours. It just can't be done.

If you're a comic book fan like me, you want to see this film work. Seeing the DC universe fully realized on the big screen would be legendary! But on the current path Warner is following, it can only lead to disappointment and despair. However, with some film and paradigm changes over at Warner Brothers, it has the potential to surprise us all.
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