Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox

Justice League The Flashpoint Paradox

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

While visiting his mother’s grave, Barry Allen, known as the Flash, is alerted to a break-in by Captain Cold, Captain Boomerang, Heat Wave, Mirror Master, and Top at the Flash Museum. Defeating the rogues, he discovers that they have been hired by his arch-enemy Professor Zoom as part of a plan to destroy Central City. With the help of the Justice League, Barry foils Zoom’s plot, but Zoom’s taunts over the death of his mother still haunt Barry as he departs.

The next day, Barry discovers that the world has radically changed: his powers are gone, his mother is alive, his wife Iris is married to someone else, and the Justice League does not exist. Aquaman and his Atlantean forces have sunk most of Europe, while Wonder Woman has led the Amazons in conquering Great Britain, and both forces are now at war after an attempted alliance between them resulted in Wonder Woman murdering Aquaman’s wife Mera. Cyborg has assembled a team to eliminate both parties and approaches Batman to join them, but his refusal leads the government to scrap the plan, and instead recruit pilot Hal Jordan to fly an alien spacecraft to bomb the Atlanteans.

Barry visits Wayne Manor, but is attacked by Batman—who he realizes is not Bruce Wayne but his father Thomas. Attempting to explain things to the elder Wayne, Barry retrieves his costume from his ring, but Professor Zoom’s costume appears, causing Barry to believe Zoom is responsible for the timeline alteration. Barry convinces Batman to help, and Batman helps him recreate the accident that gave him his powers, but Barry is severely burned.

In London, Steve Trevor attempts to extricate reporter Lois Lane, but is discovered by the Amazons and killed. The Amazons hunt down Lane, but she is rescued by the local resistance. Meanwhile, in the remains of Paris, Deathstroke and Lex Luthor are attacked and killed by Aquaman’s forces while tracking the energy trail of Aquaman’s new weapon, which is powered by the captive Captain Atom.

At the Batcave, after realizing that his memories are changing, Barry asks Batman to recreate the accident again. The second attempt results in success and Barry’s powers are restored, but he discovers he cannot travel through time because Zoom is also using the Speed Force. Barry recruits more allies, beginning with Superman, who is a prisoner of the U.S. Government after his ship crashed into Metropolis. With the aid of Batman and Cyborg, they liberate Superman, who is empowered by Earth’s yellow sun for the first time and fends off the facility’s security then flies off in fear and confusion. Barry collapses as his memories continue to change.

Barry is taken Billy Batson’s home to recuperate, and learns that Jordan’s attack has failed and that the final battle between the Amazons and Atlaneans has begun. Barry convinces the superheroes to help stop the war and they depart for Britain aboard Batman’s jet, only to be shot down upon arrival. Batson and his siblings combine into Captain Thunder to fight Wonder Woman, while Barry, Cyborg and Batman occupy Aquaman. Batman is wounded. Zoom reveals himself and explains that Barry is responsible for this alternate timeline: Barry traveled back in time to save his mother, fracturing the fabric of reality. Wonder Woman uses her lasso to force Captain Thunder back into Batson and kills him; Superman but cannot save Cyborg from Aquaman, who then remotely detonates his Captain Atom-powered bomb. As the explosion tears across the landscape, Zoom mocks Barry but is killed by Batman. The dying Batman urges Barry to run, giving him a letter addressed to his son. Barry races back in time and stops his earlier self but again fractures time, creating a second alternate timeline.

Barry awakens at his desk and finds that reality is apparently back to normal. After spending a moment with Iris at his mother’s grave, Barry visits Bruce Wayne to tell him about everything that occurred. Barry gives Bruce the letter from his father, and Wayne thanks Barry then runs off. In a post-credits scene, a Boom Tube opens in space above Earth and a horde of Parademons emerges

REVIEW:

In the early 90s, the Flash had a TV series that lasted one season. It is best known for being a ripoff of Batman (1989) (compare the theme music) and reintroducing the world t Mark Hamill (he played the Trickster, I believe, a role he we would parlay into the Joker for many years). Since then, Flash has not had his own project, but he has been featured plenty of times. Rumor has it that he will appear on Arrow this season and then get his own spinoff, which would be great, as long as they don’t change the nature of the character. In the meantime, we get to enjoy Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox, arguably one of the best Flash stories in recent memory.

What is this about?

When a trip to the past creates ripples in time and an altered present for the Flash — who no longer has any powers — he turns to Batman for help. Meanwhile, a war is raging between the forces of Wonder Woman and Aquaman.

What did I like?

Coming soon. DC comics/animation, for whatever reason, can’t seem to wrap their heads around the notion that there can be a world without Superman and Batman. Not only was it good to see Flash front and center, but we also got a few characters that haven’t really been seen on-screen or have just been support, such as Aquaman, the demon Etrigan, Grifter, and others. Hopefully, we’ll continue to see more and more characters that aren’t Superman or Batman. I vote for Aquaman, though. Regardless of what people may say, this guy is not some “wimpy fish guy”, as can be seen in this film, who is more than deserving of his own film. It is way past time for this guy to get a feature.

Story. Apparently, if you want a film that is closely based on the source material, then have the company that actually wrote the book, produce the film. With a few minor changes that were done so that this didn’t become the equivalent of an anime. The notion of going back in time to change one thing and that changes everything isn’t a new one, but it is one that makes sense when dealing with someone who can run so fast that he can break the time barrier. I also have to bring up the twisted alternative versions of Bruce Wayne’s parents. Since Bruce is the one that died in that alley, it is his father that becomes Batman, but a much darker(if that’s possible), violent Batman. On the other side, his mother becomes the Joker! Tell me that wouldn’t be some bedfellows!

Voices carry. Longtime DC Animated Universe fans have grown accustomed to certain actors in certain roles. When they aren’t there, it just isn’t the same. So, I can’t tell you how happy I was for Dana Delaney to return as Lois Lane, Nathan Fillion to come back as Green Lantern (anyone else think they should try another GL animated series with him voicing Hal?), and of course Kevin Conroy as Batman. It is so hard to hear anyone else as Batman.

What didn’t I like?

Friendship. It is well documented that Green Lantern (Hal Jordan, but John Stewart works as well) and the Flash are pretty close. Some may argue that they are best friends. Since there is only one scene with Green Lantern in the picture, you don’t really get the chance to experience that bond, but if you watch the scene where the League comes to save Flash and really pay attention to the interaction between Flash and Green Lantern, then you can see the bond between them runs, pardon the pun, pretty deep.

Confusion. When I first read a Flash comic, there was no mention of the Speed Force, but now they’ve brought it in and won’t let it go. I understand how it makes sense and works as a way of connecting all the Flashes, even the Silver Age one, but that doesn’t mean I have to like this confusing plot device.

Character design. Some criticism of these characters have revolved around them being too muscular. In some cases, this proved to be true, and in others, not so much. Take for instance, the Superman of timeline. He was a big guy, which is what you expect from him. I thought they gave him a strange face, though. Batman, on the other hand was too big, in both universes, but the Thomas Wayne version, much more so. Flash was just the right size, but I didn’t quite understand why Professor Zoom was so big, or was given red and black eyes. DC need to quit experimenting with anime style character design and just draw like they are in the comic.

CG. At the end of the film, after a touching scene with Batman, Flash runs because…well, because he’s the Flash. This is a minor issue, but out of nowhere, they decide to switch over to CG and it not only makes no sense, but doesn’t fit with the rest of the picture. Surely, if they could have taken a few more minutes to draw that scene or just taken it out.

Green Lantern has 3 animated features, Wonder Woman, Captain Marvel (Shazam) and Flash both have 1. All the rest belong to Batman or Superman…that includes the Justice League features. I hear that there is a Hawkman and/or Hawkgirl will have a film soon. If you’re into DC Animated films, then you are sure to enjoy Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox. I would have liked for it to have a more jovial Flash, but that’s a personal preference. I highly recommend this, especially if you’re getting tired of Batman and Superman.

4 out of 5 stars

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2 Responses to “Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox”

  1. Mystery Man Says:

    Reblogged this on Mr Movie Fiend's Movie Blog.

  2. […] Justice League: Flashpoint Paradox seemed to give us a point of continuity that all the DC Animated films have used going forward. I […]

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