Plot: What’s it about?
The Justice League is home to the world’s most powerful heroes, the ones who serve as the last line of defense against threats of all kinds. But what would happen if one of the heroes were to turn toward evil? If Superman went on a rampage or if Green Lantern wanted to hold the world under his powers? As always, Batman has devised a back up plan to ensure that if such a turn happened, the rest of the Justice League would be prepared. He has gathered tireless research on each hero, to create a plan of action to take them down and ensure the world’s safety. But when those documents wind up in the hands of a troupe of villains armed with a doomsday device, Batman’s good intentions place the entire world in danger. Faced with not only powerful foes to topple, but forced to confront their own inner weaknesses, can the Justice League overcome this grave threat?
As comic book based movies continue to dominate the box office, we’ve seen a rise in direct to video, feature length animated superhero programs. Justice League: Doom is one such release, in which Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, and others all show up to battle evil. The premise here is a solid one, as it puts some new spins on the hero vs. villain clashes, as the heroes have their innermost weaknesses revealed. As much as I wanted to have fun with Doom, the movie comes off as rather uninspired and bland overall. The story fails to make the most of the premise, sometimes even choosing to ignore the weakness angle in total. The animation is mediocre as well, so the visuals aren’t remarkable, though the action scenes are solid for this kind of low tier production.
As far as voice talent, Doom offers up a rock solid assortment of well known folks. Kevin Conroy is back as Batman, Tim Daly as Superman, Nathan Fillion as Green Lantern, and others such as Olivia D’Abo, Claudia Black, and Alexis Denisof. While that list is quite impressive for an animated, direct to video release, most of the cast seems content to sleepwalk through their lines. Fillion is perhaps the worst, putting no effort or enthusiasm into his performance. He might as well as be ordering take-out, given the kind of drive he puts into his work here. Conroy and Daly are rock solid as always, but it is a shame some of the others couldn’t be troubled to make more of an effort. In the end, Justice League: Doom isn’t one of the better animated superhero features out there, but for DC addicts, it might be worth a rental.
Video: How does it look?
Justice League: Doom is presented in 1.78:1 widescreen. While I wasn’t dazzled with the animation, this transfer makes sure it looks as good as possible. The image puts all the animation’s detail on showcase, giving us a rich, deep visual presentation that is a pleasure to watch. I found colors to be bright and vibrant, while black levels were crisp and consistent. You simply couldn’t ask much more from this treatment.
Audio: How does it sound?
Not to be outdone, the DTS HD 5.1 soundtrack provides an active, exciting presentation. The music sounds terrific and dialogue never misses a beat. The real draw in terms of audio is the action, as those scenes provide a nice punch that adds a lot of fun to the experience. This disc also includes French and Spanish language tracks, as well as English and Spanish subtitles.
Supplements: What are the extras?
The supplements include a look back on the life of comic book writer Dwayne McDuffie, audio comments from members of the crew, two Justice League Unlimited episodes, and a couple of promotional featurettes. This release also includes a DVD version of the movie, as well as an Ultraviolet digital copy, so all of your bases are covered here.