This thread is not about New 52 hate. So please do not say that the way to fix the film is by not telling it or by changing the characters. Etc. Etc. This is supposed to be a constructive discussion limited within the confines of what has been announced. So no complaints about Kevin Conroy either. This is about making the most with what we know.
Justice League: War is the next DC Animated film and is slated for release this Winter. It is based on the critically controversial Geoff Johns story Justice League Origin. But if Batman: Under The Red Hood has taught us anything, it's that a mediocre story can be turned into a great animated film if the right changes are made. So what changes should be made and why?
In my opinion, the film makers should:
1) Extend all of the fight scenes. Justice League: Origin is an action-packed story, not unlike the amazing Justice League Crisis on Two Earths. The book has a Batman/Parademon Chase, a Green Lantern/Batman escape, a Batman/Superman fight, a Batman/Superman/Green Lantern fight, and Superman/Flash fight, a Wonder Woman/Parademon flight, a Justice League/Parademon fight, a Cyborg/Parademon fight, a Justice League/Darkseid Fight, a Batman/Superman rescue, and another Darkseid/Justice League fight. I don't think the film makers should cut any of these. I think that they should be expanded upon and made as epic as the animation allows. And very fight should be better than the last one.
2) Cut out the Bat-hate. One or two observations about Batman's lack of powers is enough. We don't need to continuously disrespect the guy.
3) Develop a camaraderie among all of the characters. I want to see these people put aside their difference and come to like each other, which didn't really happen in the book. There is an opportunity for a lot of heart here. Action scenes are cool, but what makes a film great is the character moments.
4) Give each character a time to shine. They all deserve some spotlight to be sold to the fans and to have them appear to be on equal footing.
5) Make Wonder Woman smarter. The embodiment of heroic femininity shouldn't be an airhead. That said, don't make her too serious either.
6) Tell better jokes. Geoff Johns pumped the book with comedy--which is a good thing. It's just too bad that most of his humor isn't very funny and seems to always be at the expense of one of the heroes.
7) Introduce Darkseid earlier and develop his motivations more. Darkseid is one of the best, most interesting villains in comics. There is no reason he should be a monosyllabic brute. I say that the beginning of he movie should develop Darkseid and expand on why he is invading Earth. Show the audience why he is a really terrifying, powerful threat without using a fight scene. Show that while he is physically powerful, his greatest strength is his intellect.
8) Make the Flash funnier. In JL8, Barry and Hal are a great comedic duo, but that doesn't really come through in Justice League: Origin, in which Barry is nothing but Hal's straight-man. A million character have superspeed. What separates Flash from the rest is his humor.
9) Expand on Wonder Woman's relationship with Steve. These two are supposed to be super close. By developing their relationship, you open up more emotionally charged opportunities.
10) Expand on Cyborg's relationship with Silas. Cyborg's origin is a major subplot in the book, but his relationship with his father--the heart of the book--just falls flat and never feels fully resolved. This should be fixed. I would also like Cyborg to be a little older to be put on equal footing and confidence with his team mates. Don't just make him the timid kid, because no one finds that compelling. By making him older, you only really alter one scene anyway.
11) Expand on the Superman/Batman friendship. This is one of the most iconic friendships in comics. Why was it not a focus of the original story again? That was a mistake.
12) Make Hal MUCH, MUCH less of a dick please. 'Nuff said. Also, don't just let Batman take his **** or reveal his identity. And make Superman more of a leader and symbol of hope rather than a Wolverine rip-off.
13) Find a better way to introduce and use Aquaman or don't use him at all. In the original story, Aquaman was nothing more than a cameo and had no more than 5 lines. He had a cool feat, but contributed absolutely nothing to the plot or the story. Either fix this by having him do more or save him for a Throne of Atlantis film. I mean introduce him as organically as the others instead of shoe hornining him in at the end. There is no reason the King of the Seven Seas should not be treated with respect.
14) Get a punch up writer to fix the dialogue. A lot of it is just bad even though it's meant to be tongue-in-cheek.
15) Have the team spend more time with one another and get to know each other better. Basically don't forget to make this feel like a team story rather than a jumbled rag-tag mess. Fans want these heroes to like each other. It's depressing or pedantic to have them be at one another's throats 24/7. And have Cyborg get to know them better. Have them get to know him better, so that it feels like he belongs.
Anyway, I didn't realize my list would be this long. But with DC animation team behind this, I have faith that this can be a pretty good popcorn movie--maybe even as good as Red Hood or Crisis on Two Earths. It just depends on the director and screen writer.
Also, for those of you who haven't heard, the main cast for the film is:
-Jason O’Mara – Batman
-Alan Tudyk – Superman
-Michelle Monaghan – Wonder Woman
-Justin Kirk – Green Lantern
-Christopher Gorham – The Flash
-Shemar Moore – Cyborg
Further announcements should be made at San Diego Comic Con this week.
Post your thoughts below.