A DC Universe animated original movie.
Directed by Lauren Montgomery & Sam Liu.
Written by Dwayne McDuffie.
Starring the voice talents of:-
Mark Harmon as Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El.
Vanessa Marshall as Wonder Woman/Princess Diana.
James Woods as Owlman.
Chris Noth as Lex Luthor.
William Baldwin as Batman/Bruce Wayne.
Released on February 23, 2010.
Running time 75 minutes.
This animated feature is based in some ways on the grand Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline from DC. As is the case with any animated feature, it always takes liberty from the source work. The main protagonist here is a heroic Lex Luthor from an alternate universe where the Justice League are evil.
As is earth is about to be overrun by evil, Lex Luthor comes to our earth’s Justice League for help.
Thus begins an epic battle of good version evil. The mouth-watering prospect is that we get to see an evil version of the Justice League, known as the Crime Syndicate.
The primary roster of the Justice League includes Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Martian Manhunter and the Green Lantern. Their Crime Syndicate counterparts,or simply put evil versions are Owlman, Ultraman, Superwoman, Johnny Quick, J’edd J’arkus and Power Ring. Both sides also have a supporting cast of lesser known DC heroes and villains.
The battle is between the good versus evil versions of all our favourite heroes. We have always at some point asked ourselves what would happen if Superman used his unlimited power for evil, the Dark Knight become one with the darkness and helped spread it. This is where we get to find out. Plus we get to see how our heroes would fare against themselves.
The first thing you will notice with the film is that the voice casting is bad. Kevin Conroy isn’t the Batman. Now that is a very big crime. Anyone who has ever watched a single Batman animated feature (cartoons or even the awesome game from last year, Arkham Asylum) knows that Batman voiced by anyone other than Conroy is unacceptable. They have boosted star power by adding Mark Harmon from NCIS as Superman, a move completely unnecessary but very common in direct to viedo animated features from DC. Using the core voice actors from the animated series would have been way better.
The movie is way too short in length, clocking at just 75 minutes. This makes the story line very forced and there is no character development. Prime characters like Batman are given way little time to exert themselves. Owlman also suffers the same fate as being one of the prime antagonists, he could have used some more screen time.
There is also a side storyline about The Martian Manhunter which I felt was not needed at all, having little to do with the main storyline. Had that story line been exclude, then that time could have been put to better use in story and character development.
Crisis on Two Earths is by far the best storyline with the Justice League in any animated feature. It is the closest we have come to getting an onscreen representation of Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline from the comics. This project has been in development hell for quite a while, being slated to come out during the Justice League Animated Series and Justice League Unlimited Animated Series.
This is a must for any DC comics fan.