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Justice League: The New Frontier

Justice League: The New Frontier (2008)

February. 26,2008
| Adventure Animation Action Science Fiction

The human race is threatened by a powerful creature, and only the combined power of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter and The Flash can stop it. But can they overcome their differences to thwart this enemy using the combined strength of their newly formed Justice League?


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Such a frustrating disappointment


Simply A Masterpiece


Perfect cast and a good story


A movie that not only functions as a solid scarefest but a razor-sharp satire.


This reimagining of the Justice League sees the eponymous superheroes inserted into a cold-war ready 1950s America and puts much more emphasis on its lesser known members, to the point that the 'big three' are actually pretty sidelined. 'Justice League: The New Frontier (2008)' spends a lot of time setting up its characters to make them feel believable in its world, with some given lengthy origin stories and others shown as being well established already. The issue is that this set-up both runs too long, eating too much run-time without being focused enough to feel properly 'worth it', and essentially leads straight into a disappointing finale - all but missing out the second act. This final movement sees an ominously foreshadowed but ultimately bizarre and unthreatening 'villain' face our protagonists in a battle that should be much more entertaining, and less silly, than it is. 6/10


Again I must mention having watched Batman: Under The Red Hood and Superman/Batman: Public Enemies, Batman Vs. Dracula, The Batman Superman Movie: World's Finest, Batman: Mask Of The Phantasm and also Green Latern: First Flight, this one here falls into the just-about-watchable (or bearable) category.Out of all the above: Batman Under The Red Hood is still the best one I have seen. Then comes the Green Lantern: First Flight. The next in line is Batman/Superman: Public Enemies. That's it.If you haven't seen the above movies that I mentioned, watch them first before you accept my criticism of this film.A boring opening picks up slowly, gathers some momentum and keeps up the pace till the end. But this film is still not good enough.And also talk about running out of ideas. The creature called "The Center" is just ripped of the movie Independence Day. I mean you don't need a brain cell to figure that one out do you? I think even the cartoon industry is on the decline in Hollywood!!! Also I think the film does not do justice to the animated TV series as well.Bottom line: if you show this one to your kids and they demand a refund, or switch of the TV set and for once start doing their homework, you know you've made a wrong choice.Score 5/10= passing mark.Have a nice day. :)

Matthew Kresal

The time is the 1950s: full of Cold War tensions, McCarthyism paranoia plus the beginnings of both the space race and the Civil Rights movement. Imagine that caught in the middle of all this are superheroes such as Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and potential ones like test pilot Hal Jordan, Barry Allan aka The Flash or the Martian Manhunter who hides away as Detective John Jones to name a few. Now imagine that a mysterious primordial being known only as the Center threatened to wipe humanity off the Earth and led these heroes to come together to form the Justice League? All these elements come together in the animated DVD film Justice League: The New Frontier.The film features a phenomenal cast of voices for its characters. They include Kyle MacLachlan as Superman, Lucy Lawless as Wonder Woman, David Boreanaz as Hal Jordan, Miguel Ferrer as the Martain Manhunter, Neil Patrick Harris as the Flash, Phil Morris as government agent Faraday, Brooke Shields as aerospace executive Carol Ferris and Kyra Sedgwick as Lois Lane. There's only one mis-casted voice in the form of Jeremy Sisto as Batman whose voice seems rather odd for the role. Yet overall the voice cast all breathe a huge amount of life into their characters and properly compliment the animated versions of their characters.As mentioned above, this is an animated film and it is all the better for it. Animation is all too often written off as being just for children but this film is far more then just that. The animation allows for the film to be visually retro yet exciting. This retro feel is not only in terms of how characters look with nods to the comics of the 1950s but with the design work that match the era well. The film has a PG-13 rating which means it has a bit more blood, mild language and violence then one might expect to see in an animated film though it should still be okay to watch with kids around. Perhaps the best example is one of the film's best sequences: its epilogue which combines JFK's "new frontier" speech with a montage of DC comic images and a stirring piece of music from composer Kevin Manthei. In short, the animation is a strength not a weakness of the film.Last but not least is the story. Adapted from the acclaimed graphic novel by Darwyn Cooke, the film puts these superheroes into the 1950s and watches as they live through, and are effected by, the events of that time such as the beginning of U.S involvement in Vietnam (when it was still known as Indochina). McCarthyism paranoia and the beginnings of both the space race and the Civil Rights movement. Yet no superhero movie would be complete without a super-villain and action sequences and this film has both. Its villain is the Center, a mysterious primordial being who slowly makes its presence known as it works towards humanity's destruction. The film features a lot of action including a Korean War dogfight, Flash saving Las Vegas, an attempted Mars mission, battles with dinosaurs and all that's leading up to an epic climatic battle off Cape Canaveral. This combination of fact and fiction works to create a truly an epic tale.While it may be animated, to be perfectly honest I'm not sure a live action version could improve the film. With its combination of a phenomenal voice cast, retro design work, superb animation and an epic story. The result is a superhero film that is head and shoulders above many of its live action counterparts in the genre. If you want to see your favorite superheroes in a new light, then look towards The New Frontier.


I did not know what to expect from this animated film. I am a Justice League of America fan since childhood, and I jumped at this when I finally got a copy. Honestly, I thought this was a special episode of the recent Justice League animated TV series. From the start though, you knew that it wasn't going to be the same. In fact, someone commits suicide with a gun even before the credits rolled. It was so unexpected, I was not even able to shield my kids' eyes! This JLA movie is not for children at all. Aside from that shocking opening scene, there were plenty more bloody violent scenes. Most notable is a scene where Wonder Woman's invisible plane became visible because of her blood. The language can also be quite sharp. Carol Ferris (Hal Jordan's love interest) crisply said "You son of a b***h!" as she slapped some guy.The setting of this movie was in the 50s, and the look and feel of the locales, language and the costumes were all apt to that time. The heroes were all drawn according to how they were originally drawn back in those Golden days. In particular, here, Wonder Woman was really a true Amazonian woman both in size (she looked taller than Superman) and attitude (she tells Supes, "There's the door, Spaceman")! The scope of the movie was truly epic. The main focus of the story were on three "lesser" heroes: John Jones (Martian Manhunter), Hal Jordan (Green Lantern) and Barry Allen (Flash), instead of the big 3 (Superman, Batman and WW). I also liked the cameo appearances of Green Arrow, Adam Strange, Ray Palmer (pre-Atom) and Aquaman. There was also an impressive line-up of voice talents behind the characters.On the debit side, I did feel that the main villain called "The Center" (a flying island with dinosaurs) was a tad on the corny side.