Thoughts on each DCEU Film as of June 2019

It took a while, but I finally feel like DC Films are on the right track. At least, as of the time I’m writing this. While I will give my thoughts on every DCEU film, I think it’s time I give my thoughts on the ones we have gotten so far:

Man of Steel - While I have always respected Superman as a character, he was never a favorite character of mine. I just never really found him that interesting. I enjoyed the first 2 Christopher Reeves films, but obviously those are completely different from this film. I think Henry Cavill is great in the role, but there were a lot of odd decisions made in the film, on a technical level and a story level. But ultimately, I actually did like this film. I actually even like some of the more controversial decisions made in the film. So, I did like this movie.

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice - The best way to sum up this film is that there are at least 4 different films fighting for the spotlight in one film. I thought there were a lot of cool visuals in the film, so lines of dialogue I thought were cool, and the actual part of the film where the two icons fight was entertaining to watch. The best part of the film was Ben Affleck as Batman. I loved this portrayal of the Caped Crusader, I really wished we could have seen the full story for him that Snyder intended to show. But, I still can’t really call this a good film.

Suicide Squad - Well…I really liked Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn! Oh my god, I think that is the only legit good thing I can say about this film. This is one of those films where I can laugh at just how messy and inconsistent it is. But there is BAD! Even Will Smith is only charismatic as Deadshot for like a grand total of 30 seconds in the entire film. Otherwise, he just seems to be on autopilot. And Jared Leto sucks!

Wonder Woman - Holy crap…this is amazing! Gal Gadot is perfect for this role, the story is very smart on multiple levels, and Diana is portrayed as a strong character, not a strong FEMALE character. Don’t get me wrong, the fact she is a woman is an important part of her character, but it shouldn’t be what defines her. What defines her are the choices she makes, how she views the world and what she is willing to do to be a hero. Yea, we do get a third act climax battle with CGI and a monologuing villain, but at that point of the film you are so into it that you don’t really care and just focus on the good things that are happening.

Justice League - I know there is a movie called “Frankenstein”, but I think this films should have used that for the subtitle. The story is cliched, the villain boring, the CGI lip a unique case of bad effects. But…I do kind of have a soft spot for it. The best part of the film are the characters. Yes, Batman is acting out of character, and Joss Whedon’s directing of Wonder Woman seems oddly regressive in a couple of instances. But I love how they talk with one another, and as a DC fan - especially one who has watched the old animated TV shows like “Justice League” where the lineup included John Stewart, Hawkgirl, and J’onn J’onzz - I have to admit the little fanboy in me got excited. Again, I can’t really call this a good film overall, but there were some cool things in it (like Superman vs the rest of the League in Metropolis). So, yea I have a soft spot for this film.

Aquaman - So…much…MOVIE! This goes beyond superhero films. This is a straight up fantasy epic! The kingdoms of Atlantis look beautiful, Jason Mamoa is awesome as Arthur, the action fun as Hell! The female characters (Mera and Atlanna) have such important roles in this film that they kind of overshadow Arthur, especially Mera. But that is NOT a bad thing! It is amazing that not only did DC beat Marvel at making a good female superhero film (something that, if you ask me, Marvel STILL hasn’t achieved) but DC keeps making such strong characters that happen to be female. Where is my Mera spinoff?! One thing I was surprisingly happy with was the villains. Black Manta was so cool and sympathetic, and Ocean Master had a very justifiable reason for wanting to go to war. It is a shame that we have to wait until freaking 2022 for the sequel.

SHAZAM! - A lot of fun, but not without a lot of heart. Zachary Levi is great, Dr. Sivana was enjoyable, and I just love how even though we have already introduced Wonder Woman and Atlantis, magic is getting a true formal introduction to this universe. While I may be all right with Superman, I have always loved Billy Batson AKA the real Captain Marvel.

So, those are my thoughts. How about you guys?

1 Like

I am pumped for the Joker movie. And the new Batman movie is going to be off the hook!


In order of release:

-Man of Steel: Still my favorite DCEU movie and my second favorite live action Superman movie.

-BvS: My least favorite DCEU movie. I don’t like either cut more than the other. They’re both good, but that’s it IMO. This movie needed less footage, tighter editing and better writing more than anything. Good for what it is.

-Suicide Squad: A fun ride. In terms of its being criticized, I really don’t know what people were expecting out of a Suicide Squad movie. It’s in line with the tone of most Suicide Squad books. Harley and Waller stole the show (as they should have).

-Wonder Woman: Fantastic! A great origin story and a fun adventure movie in general.

-Justice League: Good for what it ended up being. Its absolutely not the definitive live action adaptation of the League but its still a fun and entertaining movie.

-Aquaman: Like Wonder Woman, it’s a great origin (of sorts) and a fun adventure in general. Love it!

-Shazam!: Fun, fun and fun!

I’m excited for the upcoming movies. The only issue is to get a new Superman production going. Get that on the grill and all of the creative burners will be roaring at full flame.

1 Like

To start, just like to say I’m probably one of the only people that actually thinks every DCEU film is at least decent:

Man of Steel - Very solid superhero movie overall, with good acting, action, direction, and effects throughout. Cavill is great in the role (probably his best appearance) especially. The problem is MoS is a good superhero movie, but not a great Superman film. The way Snyder puts his own spin on the character is very on the nose and the film’s writing is overall clunky, with a third act that’s mostly one extended action sequence. There’s never a Point that I dislike the film, but the utter lack of humanity does make for a tedious watch. It’s consistently enjoyable with few flaws, but those flaws are what drag it down.

Batman v. Superman - There’s a lot I like and don’t like about BvS. Most of that stems from it feeling like Snyder really wanted to make his own Watchmen while also maintaining the superhero cinematic universe blockbuster perception. The first half is more/less a superhero thriller in that Watchman vein, allowing Affleck to shine as Batman while Cavill does almost nothing. I also like Eisenberg’s villain, though the character never really felt like Lex Luther. The second half is really where BvS falls apart, with Cavill and Gadot having their moments against the green screen mush. The usually blockbuster aesthetic clashes with Snyder’s metaphors in this second half, resulting in silliness that is taken far too seriously. It’s a very problematic, mostly great looking mess of narrative that tries really hard to be everything and comes out kinda something (?). It’s enjoyable to watch as a fan, but not as someone who likes good storytelling. (A+ Alfred though)

Suicide Squad - I have a soft spot for David Ayer’s anti-hero mess. The editing is pretty bad, the film looks very muddled, and the storyline (especially the villains) is laughably inert. However, Suicide Squad showcases some of my favorite characters and performances in the DCEU. Waller, Harley Quinn, Boomerang, and Deadshot are perfectly cast and each have great moments. The rest of the group…can be a mixed bag, but besides Enchantress I enjoy everyone else’s performances. For me, the characters and humor alone save this travesty, making it my 3rd favorite DCEU film after WW and Shazam!.

Wonder Woman - Easily the best thing DC film/tv has put out since The Dark Knight. Gal Gadot is perfectly cast and will forever be seen as Wonder Woman. The first two acts of the film are near perfect imo, with the No Mans Land fight one of the best superhero action scenes in recent memory (I got chills in the theater). And Chris Pine’s death is just fantastically emotional. The film’s only problem is unfortunately, however, it’s entire third act. WW seemed to set up a ballsy ending where it’s revealed Ares really wasn’t the villain and in actuality humanity was just a negative force all along. The film completely ignores this by the ending, likely so the audience can get its final showdown with Diana facing Ares’ mustached face behind a CGI’d mask. I love the movie, but the ending did leave me on somewhat a sour note.

Justice League - It’s a mess. There’s no getting around the fact JL is the DCEU’s worst production from a writing, editing, and visual standpoint. Snyder and Whedon’s tones clash hardcore, leaving jokes that usually don’t land and emotional beats that just aren’t that emotional. HOWEVER, I think JL is a decent film solely for the cast. Love this interpretation on Cyborg, and pre-team member Aquaman (the one that didn’t just shout catch phrases) was awesome. The team dynamics are constantly interesting, and the little moments (Superman turning to Barry as he’s running, WW headbutting Superman, etc) really make this a dated Saturday morning cartoon that’s enjoyable without ever really being ‘good’.

Aquaman - Aquaman has the best supporting cast of any DCEU film. The villains look amazing and feel like actual threats, Nicole Kidman is chef’s kisses perfect, and even Lundgren shows up. The film also has the best fight scenes overall in the DCEU, each clear and entertaining to watch. Where the film stumbles is with our two leads, Aquaman and Mera. Jason Momoa is a fantastic person who I know can act, but his Aquaman is just beyond goofy. His humor rarely hit and besides the physical presence, his titular role felt underwhelming. Amber Heard, however, is the real standout (in a not good way). Besides a few moments, Mera feels like she’s just staring a CGI screens, never really present besides in the action scenes. Her relationship with Aquaman feels forced, and their kiss was eye roll inducing. Through all this though, I do enjoy Aquaman. The supporting cast is amazing and the fight scenes and visuals kept me entrenched in the universe, even when are two main characters couldn’t.

Shazam! - I really enjoyed Shazam!, mainly from an emotional standpoint. David F. Sandberg shows us again that he can work the emotions from any kid actor, no matter the genre. The foster home storyline hit really close to home, and the moment Billy finds his mother nearly ripped my heart out. Zachary Levi is perfectly cast as a child in a super powered man’s body, bringing both the sarcastic and physical humor touches. The horror elements are also a nice touch. The only problems I had with the film concerned Billy’s characterization. I’ve never felt like the character of Billy Batson has ever been a ‘bad kid’. Even in the beginning of the movie, he’s doing a not great thing for a justifiably good reason. The problem is later when suddenly he’s stealing things from his foster family and uses the Shazam! appearance for profit. These moments felt VERY out of character, and really took me out of the film. Shazam! Is wonderfully enjoyable though, with lots of heart and humor.

I feel like the DCEU is on great trajectory, mainly because it’s moving away from the original, Snyder-esque vision and more towards a system of bringing in talented people to tell interesting stories without the corporate meddling. Super excited for the future.

1 Like

With the exception of Shazam - which I haven’t yet had an opportunity to see but intend to see soon - I’ve enjoyed every single film in the DCEU pretty much equally, although if I were pressed to pick a favorite I would choose BvS because of its status as a Man of Steel sequel (I have a very soft spot for MoS because it’s what made me a fan of the Superman character).

I do want to specifically give Suicide Squad some love, though, because the nuance of the film’s narrative seems to be the biggest ‘missing piece’ for people when they talk about it, which I think is sad.

There’s a very subversive “wheels within wheels” undertone to Suicide Squad, which starts out as one thing and becomes something else entirely. Waller didn’t activate the Squad because Enchantress went AWOL or because she expected them to save the day; she simply got caught in the middle of a situation she didn’t see coming and then took advantage of it in order to try and prove herself to her doubters.

The Squad’s members were merely pawns to her, which is why she discarded them after they rescued her (she saw their internal squabbling as a distraction and dismissed them as failures), but they ultimately ended up proving themselves to her by deciding on their own to take action to stop Enchantress.

In an era where superhero films tend to be - and usually are - straightforward “action adventure pieces”, Suicide Squad stands out because of its multilayered story.

1 Like

Short report
MOS- masterpiece
BvS-an interesting mess
Suicide Squad- Robbie A+, Joker F-, film C
Wonder Woman- 80% of it is the best superhero movie ever
JL- Frankenstein yes, but watchable
Aquaman-loved going on this bonkers ride
Shazam- high five :raised_hand:

Man of Steel - not bad, could’ve been a lot better if Clark was allowed to be more charming and less brooding. 3rd act was a mess. 6/10

Batman V Superman - a disaster in every way. Only bright spot was Wonder Woman. 3/10

Suicide Squad - another disaster. 3/10

Wonder Woman - Excellent. In my top 10 superhero movies of all time. Gadot is perfect. 9.5/10

Justice League - a mess but at least some of the characters were likeable. Should’ve been so much better. 5/10

Aquaman - A very fun adventure with good performances from Mamoa and Wilson. Sequel just needs a better script. 7.5/10

Shazam! - Excellent just like Wonder Woman. Also in my top 10 superhero movies of all time. Full of emotion and character. Not much spectacle but it delivered where things matter. Can’t wait for Black Adam. 9/10

Overall I’m happy with the direction things are going in. I don’t have much confidence in Birds of Prey but I’m so psyched for Wonder Woman 1984.

DC films have always been on track in our household. Wife used to be in the camp whete BvS was good, but I think we’ve rewatched it at least twice in the last month and it has grown on her - she loves it now. I will always be saddened at the thought that I didn’t get too see the live action follow up to this movie where Superman comes back as the emissary of Darkseid. At least there’s a Superman Animated “Legacy.”

No one will ever be able to change my thoughts on Suicide Squad. It was a SS graphic novel brought to life on the big screen. Still my 2nd fav DCEU movie behind Dark Knight. Fan segments have have down voted this movie to an extent, but it certainly brought a lot of new fans to DC. My mother is in her 70s and can’t wait for any sequel or tie-ins.

The only movie I enjoyed was Man of Steel. I thought Ben Affleck, Margot Robbie, Jared Leto, and Will Smith were great for their respective parts but the writing and direction was so bad that they couldn’t save any of these awful movies. Margot Robbie carried Suicide Squad (a steaming pile of crap) on her back. Wonder Woman (the character, her part in BvS, and the solo movie) would’ve been better if someone wrote decent dialogue. Gal Gadot is great and I still don’t think she’s been used properly. I found the plot of Wonder Woman to be dull and feel wise, it tried to hard to be the first Captain America Movie. Overall, I’m largely disappointed and I’d watch Superman Returns with Brandon Routh over any DCEU movie. I happen to like Shazam because its a lot of fun but it features a stock villain and one liners that have been in dozens of other movies.

Suicide Squad was good and need. DC remembering superhero movies can have fun and sex appeal. And bring people back to see DC movies who would have likely given a pass on before.

Wonder Woman was a very well done film. The script was actually quite good. It was a period piece and the language reflected that. It was also good in establishing a premise, often forgotten, that Diana is one of the oldest of all the DC characters. And it’s also the reason to do WW 84, she has virtually not aged barely a day.

Aquaman was quite good. It established another character DC can build a CU around.

Haven’t seen Shazam, so I won’t really comment. Although I do think part of the thinking was to have a fun, kid friendly movie that has the potential to be a Xmas tradition movie.

As for MoS BvS & JL,’I have made my feelings on those quite well known in other threads. I’ll be polite and say I really don’t like them and leave it at that.