Top positive review
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An (almost) Feature Length Lego Movie (With Batman!)
on May 22, 2013
My family has enjoyed the previous Lego movie releases for Star Wars, but considering the superhero obsession in our household I had to pick this film up. The movie itself runs 71 minutes, almost a feature length which is quite a bit more than we've gotten with the previous Star Wars specials. The movie begins with Batman and Superman taking on Lex Luthor and flashes back to the "Man of the Year" award ceremony which quickly gets out of control when the Joker leads a group of villains (including the Penquin, Harley Quinn, Riddler, Two-Face and Catwoman) to crash the party. And what better way to stop a villain team up then by getting together a few "super" friends like Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Cyborg and The Flash. There are plenty of other characters that show up along the way as well.
While this film utilizes the spirit of the cut-scenes from LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, it is not a straight repackage of them. Many scenes have been added and the others reanimated and re-cut and improved upon for the release, all for the better. If you've played the game, you get the gist, but this is a much higher quality of animation and gives you the story in a much more cinematic way.
The film itself is fun for all ages, with enough Lego humor for the kids and plenty of jokes that will probably be over their heads including references to the Batman films going all the way back to the 1960s. Kudos to the design team for their parody of the original 1989 Batman film opening, as well as the use of that iconic Danny Elfman music and the John Williams Superman score. The voice work is solid and though I prefer the voice cast of Arkham Asylum, this group of actors does a wonderful job portraying these characters in a more kid friendly way.
The bonus features are great as well and include a short feature called "Building Batman" behinds the scenes in the Lego animation studio with a few kids getting to work with the resident animator, 2 episodes of The Brave and the Bold and one from Teen Titans, a Lego Batman stop-motion short, and 5 winning shorts from the Lego DC Universe Super Heroes Video Contest. There are various languages options but unfortunately no commentary which I would have loved to hear from the director or lead animator about the production. The pack-in of Clark Kent with the "S" exposed is a nice add on for Lego collectors as well.
Ultimately this is a great release. It's a fun film for all ages and a worth a look.