Justice League vs. Teen Titans is the latest installment of the highly popular DC Universe Animated Original Movies. Having already establishing the Justice League characters Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, The Flash and Cyborg in previous Justice League films, and Damian Wayne, the 4th Robin, along with Nightwing in Batman movies. The newest film added fan favorites Raven, Beast Boy, Blue Beetle and Starfire, the leader of the Titans, to the roster of heroes in the established animated universe. This article will contain spoilers so proceed at your own risk.
The movie sets out with the Justice League battling the Legion of Doom, consisting of Lex Luthor, Solomon Grundy, Toyman, Wizard and Cheetah, who have attacked during the opening ceremony of the Hall of Justice. All is going great until Damian decides to "help" the League when Wizard is possessed by some mysterious force. Disregarding Batman's orders, Robin proceeds and the League loose their lead on what was behind the attack.
As a result Batman decides Damien needs to learn to work as part of a team, and to bond with people closer to his own age. Luckily for Bats, Nightwing has just the connection. His girlfriend's team, The Teen Titans. While it is not directly stated in the film if Nightwing and Starfire are a couple, the pair have been observed setting up dates and cancelling dates in previous Batman movies in the DC Universe Animated Original Movies. Also the Skype conversation between the pair in the film has some 'interesting' shots of Starfire.
Anyway back to the review. Robin meets his new team, despite is obvious obnoxious attitude the Titans welcome him to their base, Titan Tower.
Believing himself to be above them, Robin becomes cocky during a training exercise and is critically injured by Bluebeetle. This forces Raven to use her magics to aid in healing Robin and saving his life, however this leave her extremely weak. Obviously Robin has some issues at first, but thanks to the Skype chat with Nightwing, Starfire decides they need to have fun to allow the team to bond. This prompts the team to take a trip to the local carnival, where all does go according to plan. Robin begins to drop his guard and begins to build bonds with his new team. The fun is abruptly cut short, when minions of Trigon lure Raven away and attack her.
The Titans go into action and it is a pretty close call for them, as their foes are 'undead' and when damaged or killed will simply respawn. Raven gives the Titans the background info on how Trigon is her father and how she is the key that will allow him to take over the world. Robin having now made his new bonds to his new team refuses to let Raven just run from her father, as it would mean she would always be running away. Before they can really do anything Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash and Cyborg arrive demanding they hand over Raven.
Unfortunately for the League, they play directly into Trigon's hands who quickly proceeds to take control of them, having already gained control over Superman.
Batman being the clever caped crusader we all love, knows if the host is weakened Trigon can not possess them. This prompts him to jab into his leg a syringe with a vile of Bane's venom serum attached. With Bats taking himself out of the fight, it still leaves Wonder Woman, Cyborg and The Flash for the Titans to contend with. While the Titans give it their all, they are no match for the League members and are quickly taken out of battle. Raven left with no choice surrenders herself to her father to stop Wonder Woman and The Flash from killing Starfire and Robin.
Before leaving Blue Beetle fires off a device towards Cyborg which causes him to overload freeing him from Trigon's control. With Raven gone, the remain Titans team up with Cyborg to go and free Raven and the League members from Trigon.
The Titans go to work and succeed in freeing Superman from Trigon's control by Starfire, Cyborg and Blue Beetle distracting him long enough to allow Robin to stab him with a chunk of Kryptonite. With Superman on their side again, he orders the Titans to rescue Raven while he takes care of Wonder Woman and The Flash. He breaks The Flash's leg freeing him from Trigon and then manages to get Wonder Woman to fight from within to free herself from his control. Unfortunately for them, the Titans fail at saving Raven before she unlocks the door to allow her father entry into their world.
The League order the Titans to await orders but the Titans have other plans. Raven sealed her father before into a crystal that he can not destroy. Convincing Cyborg to assist them they all enter Trigon's realm, while Superman, Wonder Woman and The Flash try to hold off Trigon.
Naturally the Titans face many demonic creatures from Trigon's realm, and Beast Boy is even able to transform into them instead of regular animals.
While Starfire, Blue Beetle, Cyborg, Beast Boy and Robin hold the creatures off Raven heads to the crystal. Meanwhile in the real world, the League are failing to hold back Trigon as he plows closer and closer to a city.
Raven succeeds in finding the crystal, but unaware to her she has been watch the entire time. Just as she prepares for the ritual the crystal is shattered by a flying sword. The assailant is revealed to be Ra's Al Ghul, Robin's grandfather.
Robin faces his grandfather while Raven faces her inner demons, her father, to seal him away. The pair both succeed with Robin declaring to his grandfather that he is now a Titan, and Raven makes peace with her feelings towards her father and how the Titans are now her family. With the day saved by the hands of the Titans they receive a congratulations call from the League, which is left awkwardly as Cyborg boom tubes himself into Titan Tower with pizza.
The team end their call to the League with a joke calling all of them Titans referring to Cyborg being a Titan prior to the New 52 Universe in DC Comics. Cyborg is even asked to join the team, but declines saying how he is already playing for the big leagues. Raven reveals the shard containing her crystal has now been mounted to her head, allowing her to keep him close by.
As she chomps into her slice of pizza the shot focuses in on the crystal, revealing to the viewer that Trigon is whispering to Raven threatening to one day break free once again. The credits begin to roll with a final treat for viewers as a mid-credit scene rolls revealing Terra heading toward Titan Tower.
All-in-all the film is highly enjoyable. Being an original story allowed them to expose a greater audience to the background of some of the Titans, especially Raven. Raven is a fan favorite, but many do not realize how demonic her powers truly are until they watch this film. I give it a solid 4.5 out of 5 stars for its attention to the plot, dynamic animations and diverse character range. Needless to say, it is more likely to please many than another current DC feature that has "vs" in its title.
During WonderCon, the producer James Tucker did state a high DVD and Blu-ray sales figure would increase the chances to see the Titans appear in future DC Universe Animated Original Movies and even potentially the live-action films. If this does come to pass, and given the end scene of this movie, could the next film to feature the Titans be based on the Judas Contract arc in the comics? Only time will tell, but if you want to see more Titans make sure to pick up your copy fast!