The Flash movie has taken the position of being the send-off for the DCEU as we know it today and the Synderverse. Fans of this universe have been steadfast in their support of the film long before anyone saw any early screenings or footage. Even with all the issues off-screen, many were dubbing this film as the best superhero film ever just based on the trailer. So let’s catch the final trailer and dive into our review.
Worlds collide when the Flash uses his superpowers to travel back in time to change the events of the past. However, when his attempt to save his family inadvertently alters the future, he becomes trapped in a reality in which General Zod has returned, threatening annihilation. With no other superheroes to turn to, the Flash looks to coax a very different Batman out of retirement and rescue an imprisoned Kryptonian — albeit not the one he’s looking for.
In a sea of superhero films and franchises, The Flash suffers from the same issues all the other ones in recent memory (including Marvel) have suffered from. Let’s dive into the spoilers.
Let’s start with the basic plot points. Messing with the timeline has consequences, and Barry decides to ignore Bruce Wayne’s warning and try to save his mother. That’s when everything unravels as we learn what we thought we knew about timelines and time/space was not true. Messing with the multi-verse isn’t new in superhero films, DC just got to it last. Still, like Marvel, the film never really dives deep into the lore instead focusing on the narrative of the timeline changes and what that meant. That is both a good thing and an issue. While the focus on Barry and the changes to the other members of the Justice League are important tethers to this store, the scenes involving the multi-verse felt even further disconnected from the story and felt like added filler with no real purpose.
Of course, playing with the multi-verse means changes we didn’t intend. This is where we get a new Batman, new Kryptonian hero, and a second Flash. Michael Keaton’s return as Batman was the highlight of the casting cameos for this film. And frankly, it was Keaton that carried the film forward from the mid-point on. His iconic lines bring back memories of Batman as a kid, and with his serious tone in the right moments, he brought the team together and carried them to their emotional conclusion. The tone is where the film shines, landing its funny moments in the right places and its serious moments with the right level of emotion.
The new timeline also meant bringing back old villains. I can’t tell if most of these scenes were just pulled from previous films and CGI was used for new scenes or if they actually re-shot these scenes, but nobody cares about any of the villains during the film, and none of them are compellingly dangerous in the least. However, this is a trend all superhero movies have been suffering from as they transition away from their last set of big bad’s.
Let’s talk about additional cameos here for a second. Since these are big spoilers we won’t name names but it’s a mess. The hodgepodge of additional cameos and AI/CGI used to bring them into the film felt out of touch, silly, and completely unnecessary. There will be an after-credits scene as well that may or may not lend a few answers to the future of the DCEU under James Gunn, but frankly, we don’t know what to believe anymore.
As a whole film, The Flash isn’t anything spectacular for a superhero film, but it’s also one of the better films specific to DC films. All of the built-up hype may do more harm than good for those who are not diehard DC fans. However, DC fans will enjoy seeing many familiar faces, and some new ones as the DCEU sings its swang song to close out this chapter and prepare for the rebooted universe under James Gunn. However, after leaving the theatre, I can’t see myself watching it a second time for any reason.