Review: The Flash

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The intro credits of “The Flash” set the tone. We travel through the speed force of the different versions of logos from Warner Bros and DC Comics from the past, giving us a taste of what the Flash will do in the film. The film involves traveling back in time and exploring DC’s multiverse in unchartered territories that have never done before in this scale and scope. The Flash is a fun movie with a lot of heart which embraces DC and WB’s past, present, and future on the big screen. The way the speed force is shown is visually stunning with the iconic yellow lightning and red hue, such as when the Flash is traveling at the speed of light and you feel like you are traveling with him. The design of the suit – sleek red with yellow and amber lightning going through it – was very accurate to the comics. The score by film composer Benjamin Wallfisch and the scarlet speedsters theme for The Flash named “Are you actively eating that candy bar?” is a great theme for the character. It captures heroism, heart, and adventure of the character, as he teams up with different iterations of Supergirl and Batman. One of the things that maybe be divisive is the ending and after credits of the movie, depending on your taste and views of the DC Universe. Below we explore the motivations and backstories of The Flash, Supergirl, and Batman in this iteration of DC’s multiverse.

THE FLASH/BARRY ALLEN (Ezra Miller)

If you had the power to travel back in time and change anything in your life, would you? That is the question ‘The Scarlett Speedster’ has faced for years since gaining his abilities to become ‘the fastest man alive’. After helping Ben Affleck’s Batman save Gotham from armed robbers, he explains to Bruce that he discovered that he is fast enough to go back in time. He tells Bruce of his desire to save his mother from being killed and his father from being falsely accused and imprisoned for all these years. He also suggests he could save Bruce’s parents too. Bruce is not onboard, and the Flash is warned that going down this path could have dire consequences for himself and the whole timeline. Due to his inner grief and anger from losing his family, he ignores this warning and races back through the speed force to save his parents, completely changing the history of this universe. But he is unable to return to the present and gets trapped 10 years in the past, where he accidentally meets his more innocent, younger 18 year old self. This past version of Barry Allen got to grow up with his parents alive, and thus did not endure the trauma present Barry Allen went through. We also see General Zod trying to conquer the Earth. The only problem is that this universe has no Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and no meta humans to save it, so he sets out to find if the last son of Krypton exists, and searches for Batman to stop Zod and his army of Kryptonians from conquering Earth. Though not perfect, it is enjoyable with a lot of nods to iconic time-traveling 1980’s trilogy Back to the Future.

BATMAN/BRUCE WAYNE (Michael Keaton)

Bruce Wayne is coaxed out of retirement and decades of solitude when Kryptonians attack Earth in this universe. This Batman retired due to the fact that he helped clean up Gotham City and make it one of the safest cities in the world, but is drawn back in for one last great battle when Barry Allen explains to him that he traveled the Universe and he needs help to stop a relentless army of aliens known as Kryptonians lead by the tyrannical General Zod. After battling the likes of the Joker, the Penquin, Two-Face, Catwoman, gangsters and corrupt politicians, he will face a super extra-terrestrial threat that even ‘the world’s greatest detective’ will have a hard time being prepared for. Batman agrees to help the Flash explore the madness of the multiverse by teaming up with the two speedsters and a very angry Kryptonian named Kara Zor-El. Seeing the Batcave and Batwing in all its glory felt very nostalgic as Keaton’s performance of Batman does not lose a step and he looks as good as he ever did. Including his Batman theme from legendary film composer Danny Elfman elevates this iteration of ‘the Dark Knight.’ Showing speed, aggression and agility in the fights only add to the myth, and the presence is still powerful on screen. The combination of what Keaton, Burton and Elfman did to elevate the caped crusader to legendary and iconic pop-culture status cannot be underestimated. I can only hope we get the opportunity to see Michael Keaton’s great portrayal in the DC Universe again.

SUPERGIRL/KARA ZOR-EL (Sasha Calle)

The last daughter of Krypton, the girl of steel, bursts onto the screen in spectacular fashion in this alternate timeline and universe. Sacha Calle as Supergirl looks like a star on screen and hopefully we will see her in more projects, whether that be on the big or small screen. She has such a strong, powerful, regal and enticing screen presence that she keeps your attention every time she appears on screen in both dramatic and action-packed moments. In this reality she has been locked up in a secret facility in Siberia for decades and has been placed there by humans experimenting on her. When she is freed by the Flash and Batman, she gains her strength and escapes with them. They explain to her they need her help to stop General Zod, who she knows from Krypton, and who wants to literally take over the planet with his army. Her feelings for humanity are not the best because of her experiences, but the fact that Bruce and Barry rescued her without even knowing her changes her mind. Later she experiences more heartbreak when she discovers the her baby cousin Kal-El was stopped by Zod in his journey to Earth. This fills her with rage to achieve some justice.

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