Friday, February 16, 2018

For the First Time Ever, the Franchise Gets a Non-Batman-Centric Installment in 'Lego DC Superheroes: The Flash'

After being on hiatus last year, the delightful Lego DC Superheroes direct-to-video series is back with its seventh movie – Lego DC Superheroes: The Flash.  In it, the Flash is manipulated by the Reverse-Flash to get stuck in a time loop, and when he finally gets out of it, he discovers that he has lost his powers and that the Reverse-Flash has framed him for doing mischief, causing the Justice League to fire him.  The Flash must now travel to the Speed Force zone in order to regain his powers, before Reverse-Flash succeeds in defeating the Justice League and in taking over the world.

As usual, the script is juvenile, but mixed with it are surprisingly clever digs on DC superhero lore.  In other words, like its predecessors, it’s another endearing Lego-themed spoof of the Justice League.
But unlike its predecessors, as what its title entails, it’s not Batman-centric.  Three of the past Lego DC Superheroes movies are centered on Batman; and even though the other three are supposedly focused on Justice League as a team, they have been a Batman showcase for long stretches.  Thus, it’s refreshing to have a storyline revolving around the Flash, as he learns the value of slowing down, being aware of his surroundings, and having a plan.  But even though he undergoes introspection, his whole arc is filled with quirkiness nonetheless.

Next to the Flash, the Atom definitely has the most amusing things to do.  I enjoyed his subplot, which involves him having to struggle getting to the Justice League after his bio-belt gets busted, trapping him at a minuscule size.  I also enjoyed the presence of Batman and Superman’s respective pets, Ace and Krypto, as well as B’dg, the alien-squirrel Green Lantern, and Storm, Aquaman’s seahorse mount.  They welcomingly further enhance the whimsy.  On the other hand, I find the blues-loving, African-American-voiced take of Doctor Fate awkward.
Overall, as far as being a comedic superhero kids’ movie centered on the Flash, Lego DC Superheroes: The Flash is pretty solid and fun.  This is an encouraging outcome, especially if this means the franchise is going to start producing more movies revolving around individual Justice League members.

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