I woke up pretty early this morning and couldn’t fall back to sleep, so I decided to check out the new Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox. This was probably the first animated superhero movie I have watched in 5 or so years, and boy did I miss them. This is going to be a full on spoilers included review, so if you haven’t seen the movie, don’t read any further unless you don’t plan on watching!!!
I really enjoyed The Flash being the center focus of the film because he was my childhood favorite superhero; growing up on the Justice League and Teen Titans animated shows made this movie seem familiar and comfortable in a lot of ways.
The plot that surrounded The Flash was just spectacular. Alternate universes never fail because pretty much anything is fair game, and I love that. The creativity in The Flashpoint Paradox, let’s refer to it as TFP from now on, I don’t want to keep typing that out. The creativity flourished in a world that features Thomas Wayne’s Batman, war between the Atlantians and Amazonians, and a Superman who is locked up by the government.
Especially the Batman plot line. I listen to multiple of Kevin Smith’s SModcasts, one being Fatman on Batman, and he discusses this movie in one of his weekly sit downs. He points out the significance of the letter Thomas Wayne gives to Flash to deliver to Bruce. Remember, Barry talks about how he still retains the memories from the alternate universe, meaning that it really happened in their current universe but it was just temporarily altered, therefore Barry keeps the memories of his mother. This also means that Thomas Wayne was Bruce’s actual father, not an alternate. Before he opens the letter, he pulls down his cowl.
Kevin Smith points out that this importance of this moment is because the night Bruce witnessed his parents die, he died too and turned into Batman. That it changed who he was and his whole view on life, which is why in the animated movies we always see him in costume. It’s who he is so even though they are just hanging out not really doing anything in the Batcave, they still stay in uniform. This is the first time that Bruce emerges when he receives contact from his father, and as a result we see tears fall onto the letter and he just says to Flash, “you’re one hell of a messenger”. It’s pretty touching, especially because it’s Batman. Kevin Smith really words it beautifully, so if you want to hear more on that whole sub-plot, check out Fatman on Batman.
Another thing I thought was awesome in TFP was my bad-ass first experience of an adult Cyborg character. I’ve only seen him in the original Teen Titans show so this was an awesome next step and I loved that Michael B. Jordan did the voice for the character. Cyborg had a decent role in this but I just enjoy his use of weapons and technology. At the very beginning of the movie, in the original universe, each hero has to diffuse a bomb and they use their own techniques. Cyborg and Aquaman probably had the coolest solutions; Cyborg just has these wires come out of his arm and he shuts it down, while Aquaman has one million microbes eating the wires of the bomb.
The Atlantian and Amazonian plot was interesting, a nice supporting plot detail that really set the tone for this alternate reality. That is a really important key to creating a new universe, and it was well done in this.
As for the ending, I though it was good. Barry realizes that he was the one that caused the shift in reality. He ended up saving his mother’s life which created a ripple across time that changed everything into what we see throughout the film. Yet, in the end, he is able to let her go and keep the memories, thus, setting everything back to normal.
That’s pretty much it, this was a solid animated superhero film. TFP was my first taste of DC in awhile, but it did not let down. It’s only an 1 hour 20 minutes and if you have the time to check it out, it’s a fun and heartwarming story set in an alternate reality that will make you want to call up your parents and tell them you love them.
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