[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=4777&w=o[/img]Title: Superman/Batman: Apocalypse
Starring: Andre Braugher, Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly, Summer Glau, Ed Asner
Directed by: Lauren Montgomery
Written by: Jeph Loeb (original story), Tab Murphy (screenplay)
Studio: Warner Bros
Runtime: 78 Minutes
Release Date: 9/28/2010
Synopsis: (3 out of 5)
Video: (3 out of 5)
Audio: (4.5 out of 5)
Extras: ( 3.5 out of 5)
Overall: (3.5 out of 5)
Superman/Batman Apocalypse opens with a meteor shower that impacts Gotham Harbor. Batman arrives on the scene to investigate when suddenly his “Batboat” is commandeered and begins to flee the scene. Latching on to the boat with a grappling hook, Batman is dragged across the harbor and lets go just seconds before the boat impacts the shoreline and explodes.
Moments later, we are tracking the perpetrator of the harbor scene as she stumbles, falls and defends herself from one of Gotham City’s less than desirables. After a few minutes of pursuit we begin to see a lot of similarities between the perpetrator and another one of DC’s heroes. It isn’t long before Superman shows up on site to assist which inevitably leads to the apprehension of the blond perpetrator by Batman with a green rock recovered at the impact site. Yes, it’s Supergirl and this is an origin story.
As Clark Kent and his new cousin shop for clothes and attempt to get her to blend into human society, they are attacked in what turns out to be an intervention by Batman and Wonder Woman with help from several Amazon sisters of Wonder Woman. After a brief discussion, it is agreed that Supergirl will go to Themyscira Island and train with the Amazonian society in an effort to learn how to control her powers. Little do they know that across the Universe on the planet Apocalypse, Darkseid is launching a sinister plan to capture the newest Kryptonian survivor and make her the leader of the Female Furies.
I am a huge superhero fan and I am partial to DC characters over the Marvel universe. That’s not to say that I dislike Marvel just that I usually lean towards DC. Kind of like the way I prefer Iron Maiden over Judas Priest and I prefer Star Wars to Star Trek. I have really enjoyed the recent waves of animated movies by both DC and Marvel and particularly enjoyed the recent Batman: Under the Red Hood.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=4775&w=o[/img]There were a couple of things that I didn’t care for in Apocalypse. The first thing is that this movie, which is geared towards older audiences, has Krypto. Really? Krypto? One of the dumbest things ever done in the DC universe, IMO, was to introduce pets and in Apocalypse it just doesn’t work at all. Luckily it is only for one scene and less than five minutes but still…. Krypto?
Second, I think this story would have been a much better had it only involved Superman and Supergirl as heroes and left Wonder Woman, Batman and the Amazons out of it or at least limited them to cameos. My reasoning for this is that overall this is an origin story of Supergirl and the villain is Darkseid both of which are Superman characters. The other heroes just feel like added baggage in order to appeal to a broader audience.
Lastly, I am not a huge Supergirl fan either. I kind of think of Supergirl as a sidekick like Robin. This story could have worked better if Wonder Woman had been the target of Darkseid’s plan. And the ending is absolutely one of the most “cheesey” and campy endings I have seen since the old “Superfriends” show from the 70’s and early 80’s.
I am sure that diehard DC fans won't be bothered by these same points, they may actually take offense to my mentioning these things as a negative.
Rated PG-13 for some language and sci-fi and action violence.
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse sports a 1080p/VC-1 is somewhat of a mishmash of and mediocre at best. There is quite a bit of artifacting in some of the darker scenes and overall the transfer feels very sloppy and rushed. There is quite a bit of banding and a lot of unwanted noise throughout the movie particularly in bright scenes. Black levels are atrocious and shadow delineation is almost non-existent.
All of what I mentioned can be extremely frustrating when you see how vivid and near perfect the colors are on this transfer. There are scenes that are just short of jaw dropping only to be ruined seconds later by some other transfer issue. This one was truly disappointing to me.
On the other hand, the 5.1 DTS-HD-MA is an excellent detractor to the lacking video transfer. Though the overall sound design of the movie isn’t particularly impressive, the deep impactful bass brought several smiles to my face. The fight scenes come to life and can pound in your chest from time to time. I did find the surrounds to be a bit lacking, even in the battle scene on Themyscira Island between the Amazons and the Doomsday clones.
Andre Braugher’s deep rich voice comes across very well and the gruff and textured voice of Kevin Conroy is the best I have ever heard it sound. Dialogue is clear and proportionate to the rest of the audio and never sounded drowned out or over powered by explosions and fleeting action on the screen.
DC Showcase: Green Arrow (10 min)
Sneak Peak at the Next DC Universe Animated Original Movie (10 min)
- Featurette: Supergirl: The Last Daughter of Krypton
- 2 bonus episodes from animated television series handpicked by Bruce Timm "Little Girl Lost Parts 1&2"
- The New Gods Documentary
- All-New Featurette Pods:
- Digital copy on disc of the feature film
I think overall Superman/Batman: Apocalypse is a huge step in the wrong direction for the DC animated movies. After great animated movies like Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, Batman: Under the Red Hood and the Green Lantern and Wonder Woman movies, Apocalypse feels more like a made for cartoon network camp fest and would have benefitted greatly from another six months in the oven by the writing team and the video transfer team. Until next time campers, have a good day and in case I don't see ya later, a good afternoon, a good evening, and a good night! :wave: