Zack Snyder's Justice League

Zack Snyder's Justice League ★★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

"Love them, Kal. The way we loved you."
"Fly, son. It's time."

A pulse pounding, evocative, and heavy-metal visual journey on how to process and channel your grief; in order to help others. Snyder uses (sometimes blurry or shoddy) green screen backdrops, a 4:3 aspect ratio, and film grain to bring the look and feel of comic panels to life, with slow-motion used to replicate splash paneling. He creates visual parallels to emphasize the godlike grandeur of his heroes. Despite this lensing, the heroes are still vulnerable, human, and changing. It's kind of funny to look at Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which displays how heroes would exist in a modern, realistic, political world, but with Zack Snyder's Justice League, it's about a full-on alien invasion. Despite this, these heroes are more vunerable, human, and realistic than most comicbook movie characters.

The inspiration from George Lucas' prequel Star Wars films is evident throughout Snyder's DCEU films, but it's most prominent here. Teases of forthcoming events via the visual or orchestral, and subtle back or head turns which poeticize the tragic and romantic events, are sprinkled throughout. Lucas' prequel trilogy is about building up (or crumbling down) to the inevitable, and with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Zack Snyder's Justice League, this future is shown more blatantly, but it can also be everchanging. A broken Kal El filled with loss of love kneels before Darkseid, succumbing to his power, mirrors a betrayed, pained Anakin Skywalker kneeling before Palpatine. Love is the most important aspect here, with Lois Lane being "the key" and Padme being a forbidden, but neccessary love for Anakin. This leads to a future where both Anakin and Superman raze a new generation of freedom fighters. With Revenge of the Sith, it's shown, and set in stone, but with Zack Snyder's Justice League, it's teased, and possible; a future always in flux. A broken, evil Superman is obviously not a major aspect here in this film, but it was going to be in Zack's saga. The similarities are there. Zack is obviously a fan of George's great movies.

I emphasized that portion of the film because it's important when analyzing the bigger picture in terms of Snyder's Superman and other heroes. Loss can tear you down and break you, but finding what made that prior love special and using that to channel your grief into courageous energy and empathy for others is what brings people (our heroes) together. Loss is what brings people together, but love and empathy for others is what truly unites them. It's one of the best comicbook films to display genuine, courageous heroism, love, and empathy. No cynicism to be found. 👇

"In time, they will join you in the son."
"Love them Kal. The way we loved you"
"I'm not broken, and I'm not alone."
"This is my world"
"Men are still good. We fight, we kill, we betray one another, but we can rebuild. We can do better. We will. We have to."
"If you love these people..."
"Now, now is your time, Victor. To rise. Do this, be this, the man I never was, the hero that you are. Take your place among the brave ones. The ones that were, that are, that have yet to be. It's time you stand, fight... discover... heal, love, win. The time is now."

Snyder's use of imagery and parallels to re-contextualize events is key to his DCEU films. In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Superman's death is tragic, but necessary for humanity; to unite, to fight, to come together. Zack Snyder's Justice League opens with Superman's death being displayed as a 360 degree, panoramic, renaissance-esque-painting-like-event which awakens the mother boxes; items brought to life to bring death. Superman's life, death, and revival is the key to humanity's success. For a man who says he needs to find out his reason for being brought to earth, and being brought back into it; his reason was there all along. His heart and his existence.

The work of a master. For Autumn

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