It has been difficult for DC Comics and Warner Bros to find the right time to bring Aquaman into the spotlight. For years the character has been made to be the laughing stock of the Justice League. But now that DC is taking their whole superhero thing more seriously, we will finally be seeing the King of Atlantis on the big screen! I can’t wait! The latest installment of DC Entertainment’s animated movies, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis is one of the best introductions for the character I have ever seen, and could easily act as an example of how to treat the upcoming live-action movie.
Throne of Atlantis is the sequel to last year’s Justice League: War, which began to build the new animated universe that the company is unleashing. Basing it around concepts introduced in The New 52, the writers do a great job at taking certain elements from the comics and blending them into the scripts of these hit films. Throne of Atlantis is loosely based off of the comic book run of the same name, written by Geoff Johns in 2012/2013. The movies change somethings up, for example Aquaman doesn’t appear during Darkseid’s invasion in War, but instead Throne of Atlantis is used to introduce the concept of this undersea world.
We are introduced to Arthur Curry, whose father has just died and he’s not dealing with it so well. We first meet him in a bar where he is drunk and talking to a lobster. Things start to get rough when the tavern wants to sell the lobster but Arthur isn’t about to let that happen. After a throwdown, bone-crunching fight, we learn that Arthur isn’t exactly human. Elsewhere, a submarine is attacked by an unknown force and soon the Justice League gets involved. From here on out the action begins and we are thrown into an intriguing political thriller with plenty of superhero action! Who will win the battle for the Throne of Atlantis?!
Graphically these films only get better with time! I love that even when it comes to animated films, the animators take their time to create stunning fight sequences! Some of the violence is toned down for this movie, if you read the comics you’ll know what I mean. At the same time, the lack of these moments do not take away from the overall enjoyment of the story. All of the characters are treated extremely well, with Mara (voiced by Sumalee Montano) being my favorite. Matt Lanter, who voiced Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, knocks it out of the park as Arthur. I like that there isn’t much time wasted on backstories, only brief flashback sequences for our hero, yet we are introduced to a ton of new characters. The Justice League is there to help move along the story but do not dominated the movie. Of course Nathan Fillion’s Green Lantern is a highlight, as usual! I firmly believe that DC needs to start having more faith in their lesser known characters if they are to have future success. Batman and Superman can’t be in everything, yet this has been the formula so far. Throne of Atlantis is a great step at introducing a character to new fans, and old alike.
I was given the opportunity to review the Blu-Ray combo pack, which also includes a copy of the film on DVD and a digital one as well. I am still one of those people who likes to have the DVD copy, which is a feature that is slowly being phased out. Digital copies are the way to go these days, and of course everything will be on the Cloud eventually. But until then I still appreciate the extra disc. The special features, as usual, are great. Here’s what you get:
- Scoring Atlantis: The Sound of the Deep
- Robin and Nightwing Bonus Sequence
- NYCC 2014 Panel
- Batman vs Robin Sneak Peek
- Villains of the Deep
- 4 Bonus Cartoons from the DC Comics Vault
I love the concentration on the score, as the music is one of the most dynamic aspects of this movie. As I’ve always said, DC Comics OWNS the animated movie side of the superhero entertainment battle! I just wish that they could translate this success onto the big screen.
Justice League: Throne of Atlantis is another solid entry into the already impressive DC Comics animated library. Release after release, DC has not let me down and I can’t wait to see the company continue to grow this new universe. This movie is not for little kids, but your teenagers and other more “mature” superhero fans under your roof will love it. The story is balanced perfectly with humor and action, while delivering one of the best animated experiences you can enjoy from the comfort of your couch! If DC can replicate what they achieved with this movie, then the Jason Momoa led film should be a no-brainer!