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#Critics Cinema

#Critics Cinema

LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes: The Flash

Posted: 20 Apr 2018 12:00 PM PDT

The latest of the LEGO DC Super-Hero straight-to-video movies, LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes: The Flash features the first appearance of the Reverse-Flash (Dwight Schultz) who tricks the Flash (James Arnold Taylor) into a time loop which allows the villain to damage his relationships with the rest of the Justice League and eventually steal the hero's powers. After destroying the Flash's good name, and then using his speed to beat the Justice League to all crimes, the Reverse-Flash makes a name for himself as the world's greatest hero. Meanwhile, with a bit of help from Doctor Fate (Kevin Michael Richardson) and Zatanna (Kate Micucci), the Flash will work to earn back his speed not realizing that he's playing straight into the villain's hands.

The story of the Flash learning to slow down long enough to take stock of his surroundings and come up with a plan is hammered home without much subtlety, but there's still quite a bit of fun to be had.

We also get appearances by Krypto, B'dg (Eric Bauza), and Ace the Bat-Hound, an attack on Metropolis by the Joker (Jason Spisak), and cameos from some other Flash villains. A subplot also features new hero the Atom (Bauza), stuck at miniature size, struggling to warn the rest of League of the Reverse-Flash's true intentions. Even if it is a bit lightweight, fans of the previous LEGO DC Super-Heroes releases should enjoy this one (and I still really want that Hall of Justice and a minifig of Zatanna), although it's a bit disappointing that we don't get any extras with this release.

[Warner Bros., Blu-ray $24.98 / DVD $19.99]

Action Comics #1000

Posted: 20 Apr 2018 09:00 AM PDT

The oldest comic around sets an unprecedented milestone with its 1,000th issue. Action Comics #1000 features a collection of variant covers of Superman over the years to go with a collection of stories from various writers and artists.

The story likely to get the most publicity is the one to close-out the comic. In the only story that also features Supergirl, Jim Lee provides the art for Brian Michael Bendis' first DC story that not only confirms Superman will no longer be going commando but also introduces a new villain who claims to have ties to the destruction of Krytpon. It's an intriguing opening for Bendis, who has already won me over with the argument that Superman just isn't Superman without those red shorts. Now if only we could convince Batman of the same.

Dan Jurgens offers a story of an uncomfortable Clark dealing with Superman Day while other heroes fight off an alien attack across the globe. Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason deliver a tale of Superman reliving various past eras thanks to an attack by Vandal Savage that showcases a few different looks from the hero's past.

With Butch Guice (and never published art from the late Curt Swan), Marv Wolfman offers up a story of the Mertopolis police handling a hostage situation while Superman is halfway around the world fighting Braniac. Paul Levitz and Neal Adams give us a classic tale of Superman versus Lex Luthor, and Lex and Superman reminisce about the past in a story by Scott Snyder and Rafael Albuquerque.

Geoff Johns and Richard Donner team-up with Olivier Coipel for a two-bit thug's run-in with a new super-hero in town named Superman. Tom King and Clay Mann offer a look at Superman in the far future. Louise Simonson and Jerry Ordway give us five minutes in the life of reporter turned super-hero. Paul Dini and José Luis García-López take us a Superman theme park dreamed up by Mr. Mxyzptlk. And Brad Meltzer and John Cassaday give new meaning to faster than a speeding bullet.

Action Comics #1000 may lack one stand-out story, but the comic offers something for everyone with some great art by a variety of comic artists celebrating the Man of Steel's 80 years. Must-read.

[DC, $7.99]

Legion - Chapter 11

Posted: 20 Apr 2018 06:00 AM PDT

Waking up from another encounter with the Shadow King (Navid Negahban), David (Dan Stevens) discovers nearly everyone in Division 3 has been infected by the teeth-chattering disease. A dip into Ptonomy's (Jeremie Harris) mind reveals each person is trapped within a maze of their own making. For Ptonomy that reality is a garden without future or past. For Melanie (Jean Smart) it's a text-based game. For Syd (Rachel Keller) that means being trapped in a loop of her own life (apparently, more on that next week). Oh, there's also a cow randomly appearing around Division 3 for some reason.

After introducing the idea of an idea as a contagion spreading like an idea last week, "Chapter 11" furthers the concept by playing with the idea of a disease causing manifestations of the disease itself. It's also hard not to notice that the Shadow King's casket, the one from which he's trying to escape, looks very much like the cracked egg in narration of both these two episodes. We're given flashbacks to the monks hiding the body of the Shadow King deep within the monastery, some insight into the cause of the chattering-teeth disorder, and David confronting the monk (Nathan Hurd) loose in Division 3. The encounter doesn't exactly go as planned leaving him no closer to finding the tomb.