The DC League of Super-Pets isn’t anything spectacular when considering who is behind the attempt to deconstruct the Justice League. This movie is not as appealing for comic book fans, since its designed for kids to enjoy.
I didn’t feel the need to watch this movie right away. Not even Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson can convince his legions of fans to see this film since he’s in the starring role. He voices Krypto, Superman’s ever faithful canine. When his master (John Krasinski) is ready to propose to Lois (Olivia Wilde), the dog feels underappreciated and gets jealous.
The writing team of Jared Stern and John Whittington have crafted a better tale than LEGO Batman because it’s not pandering. I had to chuckle as his chunky physique, and that’s not because he’s overweight. All the superheroes are redesigned to look like caricatures of what they represent. Unlike Ninjago the Movie, the dialogue isn’t as juvenile. What’s developed here is more natural, and shows some understanding of the lore from the comics.
Although Flash (John Early) and Lex Luthor (Marc Maron) never had a pet sidekick, I wondered which animal would be paired with whom. I hoped this occasional master of crime would adopt a cat. Instead, he gets an appropriately hairless guinea pig named Lulu (Kate McKinnon). Was that a good idea? I wanted to see him take on a James Bond style super villain, complete with a feline akin to whom Dr. Claw often kept by his side.
Unfortunately, this film doesn’t go down this route. Instead, we have a character who aspires to be like, and perhaps succeed Lex. The rodent is fittingly evil, and her goals reminded of the crazy plans that made The Pink Panther Strikes Again such a ride. This critter built a laser to retrieve a piece of kryptonite, so she can use it to give herself super abilities. Unbeknownst to her, so does everyone else at the animal shelter! And they have to decide on which side they want to serve.
Meanwhile, Krypto is trying to deal with losing his best friend while all this chaos is going on. Superman and the Justice League are dealing with Luthor, and this villain takes advantage of Lulu’s plan for domination. This film is funny because the animals are smarter than their human counterparts. What’s special is that we see those connections from those alternate series long ago. Batman (Keanu Reeves) had several animal companions, and it’s easy to figure out that Ace was the most well known.
Not everyone will be aware Wonder Woman (Jameela Jamil) had a kangaroo and Aquaman (Jemaine Clement) an octopus (or kraken, depending on your point of view) in the published material. I found the animated pairing rather unusual since it’s not honouring the comic book roots. And as for which team will save the day in The DC League of Super-Pets, that’s not too hard to guess.
3 Stars out of 5