Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (2010) - Digital Copy Special Edition [Blu-ray]

Genre(s): Action / Adventure / Animation / Science Fiction
Warner Brothers || PG13 - 78 minutes - $29.99 || September 28, 2010
Reviewer: Brian Oliver || Posted On: 2010-09-28


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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

S P E C I A L
.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.
Video

.:: A U D I O ::.
Audio

B L U - R A Y
.:: EXCLUSIVES ::.

Blu-ray Exclusives

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Overall
.::MOVIE INFORMATION::.
Director: Lauren Montgomery
Writer(s): Tab Murphy (written by)
Cast: Andre Braugher, Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly, Summer Glau


.::DVD INFORMATION::.
Supplemental Material:
  • 5 Featurettes
  • DC Showcase
  • Bonus Episodes
  • DVD/Digital Copy


Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Widescreen (1.78)
  • English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

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.::THE FILM::.

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse is the latest in the DC Universe Animated Movie line and although it’s certainly not the best of the bunch, I think it’s a nice addition that has plenty of action and a moderately interesting origin for Supergirl.

The plot for Apocalypse begins when a meteorite from Krypton crashes into the Gotham City bay. Batman goes to investigate and knows that someone has come from it and in this case, a young naked woman has emerged and after kicking the butt of a couple longshoremen, she traipses across Gotham with Batman in close pursuit but he gets the upper hand and takes her back to the Batcave for tests in which he discovers that she has much of the same composition as Superman but is in fact even stronger.

Once Superman comes into the picture and discovers that Kara is in fact his cousin, he takes her to Metropolis – which she finds more pleasing than the dark and dank city that is Gotham – and teach her the ways of humans and how he has lived amongst them all these years. She also learns the ways of teenage girls as Clark takes her shopping which she immensely enjoys.

Meanwhile, supervillain Darkseid has his own plans as he is looking for someone to lead his powerful guards, he knows of Kara’s existence and realizes she would be the perfect person to do so, someone he can easily control her mind and thus she will be his greatest weapon against humanity. With the help of Batman, Wonder Woman and Darkseid’s ex-guard leader, they travel through dimensions to Apokolips (or Apocalypse, not really sure how this film is spelling it) to hopefully save Kara before it’s too late.

Although I know plenty of fans found Wonder Woman to be the best of DC Universe’s animated line of movies, I haven’t been overly impressed with any of the outings. Now, this is not to say that there are more than a few that are entertaining but with the voice talents the gather and some decent animation styles, I expect more out of these movies yet time after time they don’t live up to the potential.

For instance, the Superman/Batman: Public Enemies movie wasn’t bad but when you team-up two of comics biggest superheroes together (not just DC, but comic books in general) you want it to be incredible but it doesn’t quite live up to expectations (and I know some fans downright felt it was average). Now we get Superman/Batman: Apocalypse which I would consider a sequel of sorts to Public Enemies as it marks the return of the voice talents of Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly and Susan Eisenberg (who voiced Wonder Woman in the “Justice League” TV series) and on that level, the movie is fun to... well, listen to.

Where the film falters some is with the story itself. The action scenes are pretty good and the banter between Batman and Superman is still great but I thought the entire thing could’ve been more coherent especially with a character in Kara who I didn’t feel anything for either way. It’s a nice idea to have this teen girl trying to figure out her identity like any teenager goes through but at the same time I didn’t quite buy her evil side later on and the subsequent battle between her and Superman. One other thing that bothered me is the fact that Batman was relegated to being a mere supporting character. Yes, he has a few things to do early on as the meteorite crashes in Gotham but after that it’s just him being broody, contributing a little during the fight scenes on Apokolips but at the center this is yet again a Superman-centric story, just as Public Enemies was.

The supporting voice talents are well done from Andre Braugher as Darkseid, Edward Asner as Granny Goodness (reprising his role from the animated series) and Summer Glau as Kara/Supergirl. Glau in particular has the right voice one of innocence, power and confusion that work for the role.



.::SPECIAL FEATURES::.

DC Showcase: Green Arrow (11:14; HD) is a short fun little adventure that, like with Jonah Hex that came before, is enjoyable enough as we get to see a character who would not normally get a feature-length movie. Green Arrow is voiced by Neal McDonough while Malcolm McDowell lends his voice as the villain Merlyn.

The Fourth World: The New Gods (22:12; SD) – The featurette primarily covers the creation of The New Gods (and then mainly on Darkseid) by Jack Kirby who switched from Marvel to DC in 1971 (he would return to Marvel in ’75). As only a moderate comic book fan, and even then focused basically on Batman, this is an interesting aspect of DC Comics that I didn’t know a whole lot about. ** Blu-ray Exclusive **

New Gods: Mr. Miracle Pod (4:57; SD) – This short featurette just gives us background on Mr. Miracle and his origins and connection with Darkseid. ** Blu-ray Exclusive **

New Gods: Orion Pod (4:37; SD) – Similarly, the featurette shows how Orion came to be. I say this for the previous featurette as well, but I’m not sure why this wasn’t folded into “The New Gods” featurette... ** Blu-ray Exclusive **

Supergirl: The Last Daughter of Krypton (17:49; SD) is about the origins of Kara aka Supergirl and features more interviews with those within DC Comics and others including those who worked on the Supergirl movie (like Helen Slater). This is surprisingly a ho-hum featurette that was already released on the “Smallville” season 7 set.

All-Star Superman Sneak Peek (10:47; SD) – Like with previous sets, here we get a look at the next DCU Animated Movie that goes over the story, inspiration and voice casting. In this case, Superman will be voiced by James Denton (“Desperate Housewives”), Anthony LaPaglia as Lex Luthor and Christina Hendricks as Lois Lane. Supposedly the supporting cast will include Edward Asner, Arnold Vosloo and Frances Conroy.

We also get some trailers for various DCU titles like Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, Batman: Under the Red Hood as well as 4 Bonus Episodes from “Superman: The Animated Series” picked by Bruce Timm that center on Darkseid. The DVD version only contains 2 episodes.

And this time we get a DVD/Digital Copy Combo Disc. The digital copy is a ** Blu-ray Exclusive **.



.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse is presented in 1080p high-definition and with a 1.78 aspect ratio. There’s not much of a difference between this picture and that of Public Enemies or any of the other previous DCU Animated features as it’s fairly crisp and clean throughout (there is some banding issues during the opening, however). Colors are fairly bright as you would expect with Superman being the main character while black levels are pretty good as well.

Same thing goes for the audio mix. The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track is nice but in the end just OK compared with other high-def audio that I’ve listened before. I remember that the Green Lantern Blu-ray also didn’t have mind-blowing audio and even though there are plenty of action scenes, they didn’t have much depth. Now, the dialogue does sound clear and you can understand every word being said.



.::OVERALL::.

Overall, Superman/Batman: Apocalypse isn’t the best of the DC Universe Animated movie line but I had a good time with it as it has some entertaining action sequences and a great gathering of voice talents that will be a treat for “Batman” and “Superman” Animated Series fans.