JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time

Movie review by
JK Sooja, Common Sense Media
JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time Movie Poster Image
Action-packed time-travel clash; lots of cartoon violence.
  • NR
  • 2014
  • 52 minutes

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Don't rush into things. Patience is a virtue. There's more to being a hero than fighting. Face the future with courage.

Positive Role Models

Dawnstar isn't rash or overeager like her partner, Karate Kid. Instead, Dawnstar is the voice of reason and maturity, always having to reign in and protect Karate Kid. But she's also powerful, brave, assured, and saves the day in the end. The Justice League superheroes are all expectedly good and they each fight for justice and what's right, use teamwork, and work to save innocent lives. Wonder Woman gets relegated to the "needing to be saved" role, there's a questionable taxicab scene played for comedy that might be making fun of the accent of taxicab driver, and every problem is quickly solved with violence.

Violence

Lots of cartoon violence. Fight scenes with lots of punching and kicking, many hits showing contact. Lots of laser guns, ice guns, missiles, and explosions. Superheroes use their known weapons and utilities, like Batman and his batarangs or Wonder Woman's lasso of truth. Robin pilots a space jet into an enemy and then crashes both into a satellite, which then explodes as Robin flies away. Another random enemy gets pulverized by a large laser blast from the sky. A baby gets shot into the sky, a random man falls from the sky into the ocean, and Wonder Woman needs saving by Superman after also getting shot into the sky. Wonder Woman also briefly gets paralyzed and her face flashes back and forth between an older version of her face with her present. A villain says, "let's rip their heads off." Notably, some of the supervillains, like Toyman, Bizarro, and the Time Trapper, have creepy faces and could be scary for younger viewers. The Time Trapper "banishing" many of the heroes, vanishing them from time, might also be scary for younger viewers, especially when the Time Trapper then yells, "I will remake this world in darkness!"

Sex
Language
Consumerism

All characters can be considered advertisements for DC Comics merchandise, toys, and brand interest.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time is an animated action-adventure movie that finds the Justice League facing off against Lex Luthor and his Legion of Doom. Luthor is thwarted in the present but gets encased in ice for a thousand years. In the 31st century, two rookie superheroes, Dawnstar and Karate Kid, accidentally release Luthor from his ice prison, and he promptly escapes, gains control of a time travel device, and travels back in time to the present. Expect lots of cartoon violence, fighting, kicking and punching, knockouts, laser guns, ice guns, laser blasts, missiles, and explosions. The Justice League superheroes also use their weapons amidst all the clashing. Some supervillains might be too scary for younger viewers, as Toyman, Bizarro, and the Time Trapper all have creepy, distorted, or monstrous faces. Also, younger viewers might be scared by the Time Trapper vanishing all the superheroes, making them fade away and disappear. While there are some positive messages about teamwork and courage, Wonder Woman gets relegated to the "needing to be saved" role, there's a questionable taxicab scene played for comedy that might be making fun of the accent of taxicab driver, and every problem is quickly solved with violence.

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What's the story?

In JLA ADVENTURES: TRAPPED IN TIME, the Justice League is called upon once again to defeat Lex Luthor and his Legion of Doom. In the present, Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and the rest work together to trap Luthor in ice for a thousand years. But in the future, he's accidentally freed by some young eager superheroes named Dawnstar (Laura Bailey) and Karate Kid. He then promptly escapes, steals a time travel device, and returns to the present to get rid of the Justice League for good. How can the Justice League defeat a time-traveling Lex Luthor? Might there be a bigger threat? Will Dawnstar and Karate Kid redeem themselves?

Is it any good?

The action starts immediately in this fun but shallow romp through space and time. It's nice to see JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time feature the return of Dawnstar, played wonderfully by the always-good Laura Bailey. Dawnstar is a decent role model for young girls, but unfortunately, she isn't on screen enough. Wonder Woman also unfortunately gets relegated to the "needing to be saved" role, there’s a questionable taxicab scene played for comedy that might be making fun of the accent of taxicab driver, and every problem is quickly solved with violence. Further, there are some supervillain characters that might be too scary for some viewers. Also, there are moments of peril and seemingly inevitable death that might also be too scary, as well as when the Time Traveler, who looks like Death minus the scythe, vanishes all the superheroes from existence.   

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the cartoon violence in JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time. Was there any moment that seemed too violent? Did the action and fight scenes enhance the entertainment? How so?

  • What lesson does Karate Kid learn by the end? Do you think it's important for movies like this to have lessons? Why or why not?

  • Do you think superheroes are good role models for kids? Why or why not?

  • Do you think after watching this movie kids will be more likely to want to buy DC Comics action figures, games, toys, or other merchandise?

  • Which is better, DC or Marvel? Why?

Movie details

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