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Zack Snyder’s Justice League reviews roundup: What the critics are saying

Is it worth four hours of your time?

Jacob Stolworthy@Jacob_Stol
Tuesday 16 March 2021 09:04
Justice League: The Snyder Cut trailer

It’s been five years since Justice League became one of the worst reviewed superhero films of all time

Released in 2016, the DC mash-up featuring characters Batman, Wonder Woman and the Flash was a flop largely down to studio interference when Joss Whedon took over from original director Zack Snyder.

Snyder left the project to spend more time with his family after his daughter Autumn died by suicide and, to this day, hasn’t seen the film, having been advised to stay away by his wife Deborah Snyder and friend Christopher Nolan, both producers.

Due to fan demand and the online petition #ReleaseTheSnyderCut, the director has now been given the opportunity to fulfil his vision for the film with a brand new four-hour cut that arrives this week.

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The reviews are in, a roundup of which you can find below. Is the film worth four hours of your time? It depends who you ask.

The Independent – two stars

“At its core, it’s an exhausting four-hour behemoth that doesn’t particularly serve anyone outside of the minority that demanded its existence. For those without a pre-built emotional investment, Zack Snyder’s Justice League has all the joys of watching meat being pulverised.

“It’s an ungainly mass of blood, frowns, and grunts. True, this undiluted Snyder is better than what was released in cinemas, which had the feel of a film directed by committee, puerile jokes and narrative inconsistencies included. But his voice has been allowed to lapse into a kind of creative megalomania.”

The Guardian – four stars

“For me, the Justice League still does not have the colour, flair, snap and zap of the Avengers in the MCU; it comes to life most in the regular cityscape settings that it seems keen to avoid. But there is something absorbing about this operatically strange twilight-of-the-superhero-gods that might yet turn out to be daybreak.”

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Empire – three stars

“Typically for a Snyder movie, a big chunk of the hefty running time is spent in super slow motion. Sometimes, the director overindulges — a rescue involving a flying hot dog (no, really) feels overlong — but generally it’s used in the service of accentuating action beats. At times, it feels needlessly violent — Wonder Woman goes overkill on some terrorists in an early re-edited scene — but more often than not it feels satisfying, especially in a crowdpleasing final act.”

The Telegraph – five stars

“It shares a vague shape and a handful of specific, linchpin scenes with its predecessor, but everything about it lands differently: characters that were previously empty or ludicrous now have real grit and depth, while action sequences that were once incoherent, lightweight and garish now number among the most thunderously spectacular in the genre.”

The Times – four stars

“What Snyder has delivered is an extraordinary cinematic landmark and a comic book epic like no other. He has repaired the damage done by Whedon’s cut (gone are the “jokes”, the plot holes, the slipshod storytelling) and invested this sprawling superhero saga with the fundamental element that has been cruelly absent so far – feeling.”

Zack Snyder’s Justice League will be available to stream in the US on HBO Max and in the UK on Sky Cinema and NOW TV from 18 March

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