This is not a review. I haven’t seen the movie, though I probably will this weekend. I say “probably” because I haven’t seen the score on Rotten Tomatoes yet. They’ve decided to hold releasing their score until their big reveal on their new show, See It/Skip It.
Normally, I have a pretty high threshold depending on the type of movie it is. For comedies, horror flicks, and action movies, I want to see a 70%+. Dramas and Oscar-bait movies must be above 85%. Superhero movies need to be over 80%, with two caveats: DC movies need to be over 40% and Marvel movies need to be over 90%. Why? Because Hollywood (and most critics by proxy) seems to love Marvel and hate DC.
I’m not going to call it a conspiracy theory just yet, but the politics that guide Hollywood are very strange. They have always and will always pick winners and losers in a subtle manner, but there’s no holding back in the Marvel vs. DC battle. They’ve picked Marvel and seem to be pushing DC out. This is why mediocre Marvel movies like Ant-Man score in the 80s while mediocre DC movies score much lower, like Man of Steel at 55%.
The one exception was Wonder Woman which scored a 92%; very few critics were willing to pan the first decent female-led superhero movie.
I look at movies based upon their merits and demerits. Even though I’m more of a DC fan than a Marvel fan, I gave plenty of love to Thor: Ragnarok. It was a great movie by superhero standards. Conversely, I enjoyed Batman v Superman, “Martha” notwithstanding, and felt critics were over the top in their hatred for the movie. As for Suicide Squad… okay, that was pretty darn bad.
Normally if I ask a question in a headline, I’ll give my answer in the story itself. This time, I have no idea. There seems to be a very blatant concerted effort to tank DC movies and elevate Marvel movies. Anyone who thinks that it’s independent critics who are not influenced by power-brokers in Hollywood need to learn a bit about the industry. There are good, unbiased critics out there, but most of them have incentives of some sort to stay in line with Hollywood’s wishes. They get access, privileges, career opportunities, and in rare cases actual payoffs for writing reviews that lean in the chosen direction.
Based upon early reviews which Mashable nicely accumulated instead of waiting for Rotten Tomatoes, it’s not looking good for Justice League.
Keep in mind: The 39 reviews that we found overnight will wind up being a fraction of what’s to come; a movie of Justice League’s magnitude can stir up more than 300 reviews by the time everyone’s weighed in. Some of those we’ve linked below won’t appear on Rotten Tomatoes because they’re not site-approved; some that do may flip sides, as the fresh/rotten distinction involves some interpretation.
But I’m confident enough in this sample size and result that the score won’t tick up dramatically enough to make it what would be just the second “fresh” film of the DCEU after Wonder Woman (92%, with Man of Steel in second at 55%). If history is any guide, it will likely trend slightly down, into the low 40s or high 30s, by the time we’re all done.
After further consideration, I’m going to see the movie even if it doesn’t meet my DC review score threshold. I have to know if this is another hit job or if it really is just a bad movie. There may or may not be a conspiracy against DC. The only way to know is to judge the movies myself.