Zack Snyder’s Justice League

Written by Alexander Reams

100/100

I’ve always been a fan of DC, their comics, TV shows, and film. Yes, even the highly controversial DCEU. Three, almost four years ago when Justice League was released most, including myself, were let down by the half baked film. Now after much campaigning from the fans we have Zack Snyder’s original, uncut version, much to the glee from fans and filmmakers alike. Especially after the numerous reports coming from the 2017 Justice League set in which Joss Whedon at best behaved poorly. This in conjunction with reports of Warner Bros. tampering with other DCEU films, Suicide Squad being a major example led many to speculate just how much more grandiose and joyful Snyder’s version might be.

    Martin Scorsese criticized superhero films broadly claiming they were like “theme parks” and not “cinema”. Zack Snyder’s Justice League seems to be the closest example of what a superhero film might look like after the advent of the Avengers that Scorsese may like. There is a clear vision and style to the film. Shot differently than most contemporary superhero films and brimming with a fantastic cast who work well together. Ray Fisher has long been a big campaigner for the Snyder Cut to be released. After watching this rendition of the film you can clearly see why, as he’s it’s heartbeat.

    There’s been talk about the runtime, 242 minutes is a long film, and the longest superhero film of all time, beating Snyder’s previous record with Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut. The runtime feels completely earned, at this point in the DCEU we had not been introduced to Aquaman, Flash, or Cyborg. So this is a continuation of Wonder Woman’s story as well as a sequel to Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice and an introduction to those respective characters. Something that’s easy to forget now, on the other side of those films release.

    By the end of the film, I was in tears, there are some of the best fan service moments I’ve seen. I don’t want to delve into spoilers but the last 80 minutes of the film are some of Snyder’s best filmmaking in his career. I hope to see the Snyderverse restored, expanded on, and continued in the future. This is better than any film the MCU has put out yet. I loved this film so much and I can’t say that enough. To me this film is perfection. 

#restorethesnyderverse

Zack Snyder’s Justice League Trailer

You can watch Zack Snyder’s Justice League on HBO Max.

You can connect with Alexander on his social media profiles: Instagram, Letterboxd, and Twitter.

Sundance 2021 Review: Wild Indian

Written by Taylor Baker

66/100

In an effort to define a train of experience for Native life Wild Indian starts in the 1800’s with a man who appears to have the pox wandering west. It quickly changes course to the 1980’s where a young boy commits a murder and his friend witnesses it. We then jump time once again to 2019. It’s unclear which adult actor is portraying which child, and right when you think you have it figured out a pivotal and violent scene in a strip club occurs. Acted out by Michael Greyeyes’ M’kwa. The previous portion of the film until we arrive at this timeline was uneven at best. In this newer adult aged portion of the story though, we see grounded heart-pulling performances and a vast improvement to the editing. In the pivotal murder scene in the 1980’s there was an editing flub that undid a lot of the gravity of the moment.

Lyle Mitchell Corbine Jr. demonstrates an original voice in his directorial debut, smoothly stringing together lens movement, committed performances, a ringing tone of guilt, and an almost lovable anti-hero. It should be noted that this not only serves as his directorial debut but the first feature film screenplay he’s written. There are some exterior shots that lose the pace a bit, and editing fades that leave much to be desired. But there’s talent on display here, and when Corbine Jr. let’s the performers go the film jumps to life. I’d love to see him re-team with Greyeyes in the future.

The dramatic beats lean heavily on Gavin Brivik’s score, that’s swells queue a compassion for our anti-hero that would be hard to muster without. Eli Born provides a consistently clean shot. His images are never ugly and occasionally border on gorgeous. There’s few filmmakers at Sundance thus far that have put the ownness on the performer to make a film sing and wrote their screenplay to adequately set their performers up to do so. Though the ending doesn’t provide the payoff we as an audience want, our longing for more clarity shows how effectively it’s narrative worked.