After the critical and commercial success of Wonder Woman, Warner Bros. is hoping to have another hit on their hands in the form of Justice League. The mega superhero film will release this November — yet despite the film's premiere being mere weeks away, the review embargo is still in place. This long embargo may bode ill for the film, but if the Wall Street Journal is to be believed Justice League's screening score was quite close to that of Wonder Woman.
A "Crowd Pleaser"
Although the film was dubbed a "crowd pleaser" there was one aspect Wall Street Journal's Ben Fritz had a problem with, and that was Stepphenwolf. In a now deleted tweet, Fritz wrote:
"I don't do reviews but I will say this after seeing "Justice League": Ezra Miller's Flash really is a standout. Steppenwolf is not."
While the Flash's role being positively received is certainly a good thing for DC (especially since the fate of Flash's solo film rests on the success of Justice League), the negative reaction to Steppenwolf is something that could end up hurting DC in terms of reviews. Although at first audiences took to CGI villains in superhero movies, critics have always had a dislike for computer-generated baddies — and now, even casual fans are complaining about the superhero genre's reliance on CGI. If Steppenwolf's character is disappointing to critics, this may end up hurting the film's reception among both film journalists and wider audiences.
Yet, for quite some time both Marvel and #DC have struggled with making their villains believable, and a weak villain doesn't necessarily mean that the film will fail at the box office — superhero movies continue to have major box office pull, despite featuring a poor antagonist. Even #WonderWoman's villain, Ares, was said to be the major flaw in the film, especially in the CGI-suffused final act, and the film went on to break multiple records. Nonetheless, if more people end up finding Stepphenwolf as a poor adversary to the Justice League, DC may be unable to keep up the momentum of their newfound critical success.
Why Justice League Needs To Do Well
It isn't just the fate of Flashpoint that rests on the success of Justice League: the film is expected to introduce us to various members of the team who will all, in due time, have their own solo movies. If the response to the film and its characters isn't positive, the development of upcoming solo features will be hampered, slowing down the development of the #DCEU itself, and thus many movies that are still in pre-production may be paused, or pulled off the slate entirely. Critics have also argued that Wonder Woman's shot at the Oscars next year also hinges on how well Justice League is received, which really goes to show why this team-up movie needs to be a hit for Warner Bros.
Of course, it's hard to tell just what the critics thought of the film before the embargo is lifted. Till then, we can hope that Justice League turns out to be just as amazing as it has looked so far in the trailers.
Are you excited for Justice League? How do you think the movie will be? Comment to us below.
(Source: Wall Street Journal)