Warner Bros. can now join its fellow studios in the Bad News department: “Justice League,” the studio’s attempt to turn DC Comics into a Marvel-like money maker. is being trashed by critics.
This is on top of Warners’ other bombs this year including “Blade Runner 2049” and “King Arthur.” Other strikeouts include the current “Geostorm” and films like “The House” and “CHiPS.”
Still, Warners can point to mega hits “Wonder Woman” and “It.” And it’s possible “Dunkirk” will sweep up a lot of Oscar nominations.
But “Justice League” has scored just a 51 on Metacritic. (No reviews on Rotten Tomatoes til tomorrow, the movie opens Friday.)
The biggest thing going against “Justice League” is that it’s not “Wonder Woman 2.” The Patty Jenkins movie was such a giddy high– labeled the best comic book movie by some– that even the average rank of “Justice League” seems worse than it really is.
This movie, of course, suffered from change in directors. Zack Snyder left after a personal tragedy, replaced by Joss Whedon, whose credit is unofficial. They are directors with two very different styles. From reports it doesn’t sound like the two tones meshed.
There is a range of reviews on Metacritic among the 25 counted so far: Variety’s Owen Gleiberman loved it and gave it an 80. The Hollywood Reporter’s Todd McCarthy said it was a 30 and claimed “it’s simply not fun.”
We won’t know the full extent of the critical damage until tomorrow. And yet, the box office may still surprise everyone at least on the first weekend. But I think tonight’s preview screenings around the country will presage the weekend damage.
PS This may be the end of Ben Affleck as Batman. Stay tuned…