Screw the Critics: Justice League is the DCEU we’ve been waiting for

At this point, what could be said from a negative perspective about the latest entry of the DC Extended Universe, Justice League, has been said. In fact, for months prior to the film’s release this week negative reports, many of which were false, helped derail optimism for the film. But now the film is here before the public, and despite a Rotten Tomatoes aggregate critical score that’s less than ideal, the film can speak for itself. 

And plain and simple, it’s great. 

So why are the critics so prone to diminish the film that joins Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman, Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman on screen for the first time? The most common answer is that the narrative lacks consistency and can feel rushed. While this is likely true for the film’s first act, the movie finds its bearings in spectacular fashion by the start of the second act and never looks back. 

Another likely source of contempt for critics is the film’s connection to a film universally panned, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. I’d be lying if I said that I found Batman v Superman to be enjoyable, or quite frankly, respectful of its three main heroes. But anyone who didn’t like Batman v Superman because of its tone or depiction of the characters should love the new direction of these characters. Batman, while still the grump of the group, is definitely an actual hero rather than a crusader with a death wish. Wonder Woman continues her inspirational arc that began in her solo film, and undoes the damage of her narrative from ‘Dawn of Justice’ by acknowledging she never turned her back on mankind, but rather operated and saved people quietly from the shadows. And lastly, and most importantly, Superman is back. The hopeful Superman. The confident Superman. The Superman that not only cares about those closest to him, but all of us as well. 

So is this film for the vocal minority who liked Batman v Superman? Whether you thought Batman v Superman was well executed or not, you can’t deny that there was an attempt at a heavy, grown-up story beneath the surface. There were several subplots, many complicated, and the themes were deep, at least in concept. That isn’t occurring in Justice League. This film is closer to a Marvel movie. It’s very linear, easy to understand and doesn’t require any deep thinking. 

But that’s okay.

Justice League captures the essence of the DC characters we so dearly love. And that should be enough for this installment of the universe. In fact, and perhaps most encouragingly, Justice League succeeds in its most fundamental objective: it makes us want to see more of these characters.

Justice League serves as a tremendous bookend to the Snyder-era of the DCEU, seeing Superman’s full arc that started in Man of Steel come to fruition, while also opening the door to the future of the Geoff Johns DCEU, thanks to the vibrancy, humor and hope that this film delivers. So in the end, screw the critics. Screw the cynics. See this movie.

It’s heroic. 

Written by | Omar Hussain

Omar Hussain serves as the Publisher and Managing Editor of the Heroic Universe.

  • William Mirabal

    The only thing I’ll disagree on is that BvS was loved by the majority not the minority, other than that I agree