Check out our review of this all new DC Universe animated feature. In an alternative history Zod is Superman's father, Batman is a vampiric Man-Bat, and Wonder Woman is the child of Ares, God of War. When these dark heroes form an alliance, the question everyone asks is will they save the world, or rule it?
Studio and Year:
The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Warner - 2015
Feature running time:
English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
English SDH, Spanish, French
Benjamin Bratt, Michael C. Hall, Tamara Taylor, Jason Isaacs, C. Thomas Howell
Blu-ray Disc release Date:
July 28, 2015
"From dark heroes, justice will dawn"
This is not your parents’ Justice League! These heroes are not the renowned saviors of the world – they’re more likely Earth’s despotic rulers. Witness the divergent reality where the Justice League protects the planet – but answers to no one but themselves. Employing methods of intimidation and fear, this Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman deal brute force in the name of justice. In this alternate universe, Superman was not raised by the Kents in Smallville, the Caped Crusader is not Bruce Wayne, and Wonder Woman is not an Amazon warrior of Themyscira. When a group of famed scientists experience untimely “accidents,” a government task force follows the trail of clues to the Justice League, but is there a more powerful player operating from the shadows? It’s a high stakes game of intrigue, mystery and action that asks the question: How do you serve justice to those above the law?
As a kid I was more of a Marvel Comic reader however my first foray into comics was DC and still enjoyed reading them. I always liked The Justice League and when I read the press release for Justice League: Gods and Monsters
I had to see what it was all about. It initially took getting used to seeing Superman and Batman looking completely different as well as the differing take on the League’s operation and interaction/perspective with the authorities and public. At differing points throughout the film a backstory is provided on each hero, and they are noticeably different than the DC Universe we all know.
I didn’t mind the change and found myself engaged not only by that aspect of the film but the plot and action as well. I have now seen a number of DC Universe animated features and each has proven to be well done and entertaining to watch. At 76 minutes the pacing is brisk, keeping things moving, but not feeling rushed. Justice League: Gods and Monsters
features quite a bit of violence along with some thematic content, neither of which would be appropriate for younger viewers so bear that in mind.
The performances are spot on with a celebrity voice cast which includes Michael C. Hall as Batman, Benjamin Bratt as Superman, Tamara Taylor as Wonder Woman, Paget Brewster as Lois Lane, Jason Isaacs as Lex Luthor and C. Thomas Howell as Dr. Will Magnus. As with previous DC Universe animated titles coming to Blu-ray the production work adds an enriching element and is excellent. Justic League: Gods and Monsters
may not be everyone’s cup of tea, especially for traditionalists, but I had a good time with it and look forward to the next installment.
The rating is for violence throughout and suggestive content including nudity.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100/EXCELLENT = 83-91/GOOD = 74-82/AVERAGE = 65-73/BELOW AVERAGE = under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency effects:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
- Low frequency extension * (non-rated element): NA
- DSU Rating * (non-rated element):
Justice League: Gods and Monsters comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 18 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3 Mbps.
- Black Level/Shadow Detail:
- Color Reproduction:
Animation can sometimes be difficult to thoroughly judge when evaluating its video quality. This video presentation looks quite good and features colors that are reserved in saturation and consisted of tones that were not especially bright but mated well with source material. Resolution is very good with refining clarity as the video had tack like sharpness with crisp edges and no obvious signs of edge enhancement. Contrast is stable which provides plenty of pop to the image during scene transitions that blend light and dark onscreen elements. Blacks don’t have an infinite sense of depth but they are solid black and stand out well when onscreen with mixed content. Dark scenes have excellent contrast with discernible gradational stages and delineated color within backgrounds.
The high resolution DTS-HD MA soundtrack is well articulated with excellent headroom and crystal clear rendering across the board. The well balanced presentation features high level detail in a rewarding blend of dialogue, sound effects, bass and music. The results makes for a dynamically gratifying, richly enveloping surround sound mix that delivers robust bass, and plenty of action based sounds/effects to make the experience fun. Crank it up and enjoy the ride.
- (HD) Alternate Realities: Infinite Possibilities - Justice League: Gods & Monsters falls into a category of storytelling where our well-known characters and the worlds they inhabit are re-imagined. This documentary explores the various attempts by writers to have a little fun and tinker with the characters, resulting in exceptional storytelling that posed thought-provoking questions to audiences – 19 minutes
- (HD) Calculated Risks: The Making of Gods and Monsters – Justice League: Gods & Monsters was an idea that pushed the boundaries. It began with that challenging question writers face: “What haven’t we seen before?” Bruce Timm and Alan Burnett audaciously answered that challenge, resulting in a fresh and exciting film that forces us to think differently about the DC Universe – 23 minutes
- (HD) The New Gods – Encore presentation of 2010 documentary about Jack Kirby’s New Gods – 22 minutes
- (HD) An 11 minute sneak peak at Batman: Bad Blood the next DC Universe animated feature film.
- Bonus cartoons from the DC Comics Vault - Legion of Super Heroes "Phantom" & Superman the animated series "Brave new Metropolis"
- (HD) Trailers: The Man from U.N.C.L.E, Batman vs. Robin, and Teen Titans Go!
- Bonus DVD
- Digital HD Copy
Having seen a number of DCU animated titles I think it is safe to say that I am now a fan of the series. Featuring an intriguing alternate DC Universe and accompanying storyline, Justice League: Gods and Monsters
is a fairly engaging and action packed entry that I enjoyed spending time with. It comes to Blu-ray from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment in a well-rounded package that features rewarding high definition audio/video quality and a complimentary assortment of bonus supplements. If you’re a fan and don’t mind sampling something different Justice League: Gods and Monsters
on Blu-ray is well worth checking out.
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Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS4910 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman 5 & C6 Meter from Spectracal)
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
Carada Masquerade Horizontal Masking System
Marantz AV8802 13.2 Channel Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
B&K Reference 200.7 Series 2 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-103D Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (With Darbee video processing)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" and In-Ceiling series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SVS PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
Panamax M5400-PM Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package