LEGO and super heroes are a natural fit. LEGO has been delivering a great variety of sets and it's great seeing Batman, Superman and other DC heroes in LEGO form. Having a movie based on the line makes sense given the rise in other LEGO animated series along with the video game from last year.
One of the strangest things is hearing Danny Elfman's score from Batman: The Animated Series. Soon afterwards, we hear John Williams' Superman theme. The movie does feature cutscenes from the video game. It begins the same way with at the awards for Man of the Year when the ceremony is invaded by Joker and other Bat-Villains.
Eventually we see Lex free Joker from Arkham in order to help perfect a LEGO Destructor Ray. Despite Batman's reluctance, he teams with Superman. There are plenty of familiar faces as we get to see the LEGO versions of Two-Face, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, Penguin and Riddler. We even see Two-Face's jeep (available in toy form, naturally).
There have been several different versions of Batman over the years and Troy Baker voices one that is more of a jerk than usual. This is a guy that is very curt and cold with Robin. This continues over the story and you start to feel sorry for poor Robin.
There is a theme throughout the movie that you can pick up on right away. The movie is called 'DC Super Heroes Unite' but the last thing Batman wants to do is accept or admit he might need help. He's willing to work with Robin, to a certain extent. He barely even sticks around for him. When Superman pops in (because of Lex's involvement), you get that tension between the two that is sometimes seen in comics.
Speaking of Lex, it's wonderful having Clancy Brown reprise the role.
The graphics look pretty slick. Some of the scenes are taken from the video game but there is more added (obviously) to flesh out the story. The story spans several locations including Arkham Asylum, the Batcave, Metropolis and more. Every once in a while we're reminded that everything is made up of LEGO. It can be a little weird but humorous at the same time.
What about the other heroes?
Seeing the different heroes is great. I have to admit that Green Lantern was the most impressive. There is plenty of entertainment here. The movie doesn't compare to the other DC original animated movies. You do get a sense this is geared towards younger viewers, or perhaps 'all ages' while the other movies tend to be PG-13.
This is a fun movie. Is it groundbreaking? No. Does it need to be? Not really. We have DC super hero LEGO brought to life. It looks great on Blu-ray and is a great movie to watch with all the comic book fans in your ife. Typical to the DC movies, it has a low running time of 71 minutes.
- There is a short feature "Building Batman" (14:55) featuring Garrett Barati, a professional animator. He won a competition on building LEGO and does stop-motion animation. We see some of the building programs he does with kids.
- Additional Episodes from the DC Comics Vault: "Triumvirate of Terror" from Batman: The Brave and the Bold; "Scorn of the Star Sapphire" from Batman: The Brave and the Bold and "Overdrive" from Teen Titans.
- There is a short feature "LEGO Batman Jumps Into Action: A LEGO Batman Stop-Motion Short" (:38) Super short video.
- Winning shorts from the LEGO DC Universe Super Heroes Video Contest. The video entries for the first through fifth place are included.
- Trailers: More from DC Comics (1:15) Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Young Justice, Batman: The Brave and the Bold; DC Comics: The New 52 (:34) old launch trailer; Scooby-Doo! trailers (2 of them) and a Scooby-Doo Dubstep video.
It should be noted there was also a trailer/commercial at the beginning for buying digital comics, "New comics every week."
It's a fun movie. If you're a DC Comics or LEGO fan, you'll want to check it out. The biggest problem I had was having already seen so much of the story in the video game. It didn't feel 'new' and I pretty much knew what was coming up. If you have been adding the other DC original animated movies to your library, this makes sense to include even if it's not a perfect fit with those.
Now that we have this, it would be great to see other original LEGO movies to see what else could be explored. The Blu-ray does also include an exclusive Clark Kent/Superman figure (Power Armor Lex Luthor not included):
LEGO Batman: The Movie - DC Super Heroes Unite is now available with a SRP of $24.98. Chances are you'll be able to find it cheaper. The exclusive Clark Figure might be worth the price alone down the road if he isn't reproduced. Watch it with the family and have some fun.