Whilst the DC big screen iterations have been brutally attacked by critics, the Warner Bros. Animation adventures are often left unscathed, mainly because these tend to fall beneath the radar of the general multiplex movie reviewer with the core target here being the fans and also because they are pretty good.
In Justice League VS Teen Titans we find these two great DC teams, stacked with familiar characters, working with and against each other as a new threat appears, Trigon, enslaving Superman and the rest of the Justice League in a bid to capture Raven, leaving the teenage Titans to save the day.
As has been in the last few movies, the main focus tends to be on Damian Wayne, the newest Robin and son of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul. Coming across as pompous and whiney in the past few films, here there is a genuine character progression, with him finally learning how to act within a team after being punished by Batman following a rash decision when taking on the Legion of Doom. Turns out being surrounded by like minded teenagers rather than being holed up in a dank cave with his Dad was all he needed.
Though these films tend to be around the 80 minute mark, there is plenty of time to flesh out a story and fill it with some serious action. Justice League VS Teen Titans is once again set in the New 52 universe, strange considering the hype surrounding the of DC Rebirth but I suppose it takes some time to create these films, especially of this quality where the animation surpasses what has come before, showing real care and attention to these event films. The voice cast also captures the essence of the heroes they portray, with familiars like Jason O’Mara returning to their roles and current fan fave Jon Bernthal lending his gravelly vocal talents to Trigon, who has also brought along fellow Daredevil actress Rosario Dawson. It is not all perfect though, as early on there are however a few awkward moments, especially at the start where the speech is a little disjointed, feeling pieced together in an editing room rather than a naturally flowing conversation.
It is interesting how the big screen versions tend to struggle with an ensemble cast whereas the animated films thrive on adding even more to the fold, or maybe it is just that Dawn of Justice needed Wonder Woman punching an elephant and a superhero dance off to appease the critics. With Justice League VS Teen Titans there are plenty of cameos from fan favorite’s, sadly with such a huge roster many are given scant screen time with the likes of Lex Luthor and Nightwing appearing only briefly plus the film ends with a little teaser as to what may be the next outing, so remember, if you want more, buy these films, don’t torrent.