Justice League

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Justice League Movie Poster Image
All-star superhero adventure is uneven but entertaining.
  • PG-13
  • 2017
  • 121 minutes
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 38 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 46 reviews

We think this movie stands out for:

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The movie's biggest message is about the importance of team building and working with others for the greater good. Each of the superheroes alone couldn't defeat the enemy, but together, they're much stronger. Also shows how a team's (or neighborhood's or society's) different strengths and abilities are what make it powerful.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Each member of the team is courageous, selfless, and brave, but they also have to learn to communicate, work together to highlight one another's strengths, and listen to a leader, depending on the circumstances. Wonder Woman continues to be a strong role model. Although her beauty is still remarked upon, it's not what makes her exceptional. Batman realizes he's not the ideal leader and learns what being part of a team means. The Flash must learn how to get out of his comfort zone to help save people. Cyborg finally believes that his new life (and body) have value.

Violence

Lots of large-scale superhero-movie violence: huge explosions, widespread destruction, battle sequences. There's no gore (with the exception of the parademons' gooey green blood), but a giant monster tosses even the superheroes around like they weigh nothing, kills foes, and destroys buildings. A resurrected Superman angrily fights with and injures Batman. A family is armed but can't fight the parademons; they nearly die but are saved at the final moment. Tons of weapons (swords, guns, hammer, trident, lasso, shields, etc.) and hand-to-hand fighting.

Sex

Shirtless shots of various male characters; a couple of scenes of a reunited couple kissing and embracing. Mentions of Wonder Woman's beauty/attractiveness.

Language

A few uses of strong language, including "s--t," "s--thole," "a--hole," "hell, "damn," "Jesus," and "son of a bitch." A couple bleeped uses of "f--k."

Consumerism

Several shots of expensive Mercedes cars; lots of tie-in merchandise, including apparel, games, figurines, etc.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Adults drink in pubs and alone. Aquaman downs a bottle of liquor and then throws it into the sea. Bruce and Diana have a drink together.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Justice League is DC Comics' all-star superhero adventure, with Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Cyborg, and Aquaman. As in previous DC movies, this one has lots of large-scale, explosive violence (close-up battles as well as mass destruction of property, all with loads of different weapons). But it's not as dark, and there's far less romance -- minus comments about Wonder Woman's attractiveness, a few shots of shirtless men, and a couple of kisses. Language includes occasional use of words including "s--t," "a--hole," and "son of a bitch." With its big ensemble and messages of teamwork and courage, expect this installment to appeal to viewers of all ages, but it's most appropriate for tweens and up. And while it's not strictly necessary, it's best to have seen Wonder Woman and Batman v Superman to really follow along. (Note: Be sure to watch the entire end credits of Justice League, because there are two extra scenes that set up the sequel.)

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byPizza G. November 16, 2017

Intriguing new heroes but faulty pacing

Justice League and Wonder Woman, both successes, have cleared the DC name after Suicide Squad, and yet they suffer from the same issues. Both struggle with keep... Continue reading
Parent of a 10 and 12 year old Written byMataio G. November 19, 2017

Better than expected!

In anticipation of this movie, the poor reviews were distracting. However, we were interested in seeing Aquaman and Wonder Woman anyway. Admittedly we went into... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byJacobthehero November 17, 2017

Thoroughly Entertaining, but some disappointments

I loved this movie! It wasn't as dark as Batman v Superman and it has a happier ending. The swearing was not that bad, but there are some (bleeped out) f-w... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old November 19, 2017

not appropriate

I think that kids under the age of 11 should not see this movie if they do not like violence or do not under stand sex. this movie was sexually inappropriate.

What's the story?

JUSTICE LEAGUE starts off in a world that's mourning Superman's death after the events of Batman v Superman. In Gotham City, Batman (Ben Affleck) notices that flying alien creatures that feed on fear keep popping up. And in Themyscira, Queen Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen) and the other Amazons face off against reborn supervillain Steppenwolf (Ciaran Hinds), who's returned to Earth to find three "mother boxes" of energy (one is with the Amazons on Paradise Island, one is with the Atlanteans under the sea, and the final one is hidden among men). When joined together, the boxes will cause mass destruction and a new world over which Steppenwolf can preside. Bruce Wayne enlists Diana Prince/Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) to help him recruit a team of superheroes -- including young Barry Allen/The Flash (Ezra Miller), reclusive Victor Stone/Cyborg (Ray Fisher), and rebellious Arthur Curry/Aquaman (Jason Momoa) -- to stop Steppenwolf and his fear-devouring parademons from destroying the world.

Is it any good?

DC's ensemble adventure works best when it's highlighting co-screenwriter/director Joss Whedon's signature team-building elements, which humanize each superhero. But it's ultimately not as cohesive or memorable as Wonder Woman. It is, however, better than Batman v Superman (though once more it's the melancholy Superman subplot that brings the story down). The cast, led by Affleck and Gadot, is certainly good, but the band of superheroes doesn't quite gel until the final battle sequence. Until then, they're all sizing one another up -- and, in the case of Aquaman, finding others (with the exception of Wonder Woman) lacking. At one point, Aquaman literally says to Bruce, in what becomes a running gag, "You have no powers, no offense." 

A big part of the reason that the movie feels uneven is that it was directed by both Zach Snyder and Whedon (official credit notwithstanding), who stepped in after a family tragedy forced Snyder to withdraw from the film. Snyder is an action stylist (all those slow-motion shots of the superheroes mid-air, about to punch, stab, hit someone!), but he isn't exactly a master at realistic dialogue. Whedon, meanwhile, is a specialist in witty banter, ensemble relationships, and dialogue. Those familiar with both filmmakers' styles will find it easy to tell which aspects of the movie are Snyder's and which are Whedon's, but they don't always blend together well. On the bright side, the additions to the team are all compelling in their own ways, with Miller's The Flash as the punchy, adorkable teen of the bunch (like the new Spider-Man over at Marvel). This may not be the universal win DC wanted after the studio's Wonder Woman high, but there's a lot of potential for the sequel, as well as individual Justice League movies.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the popularity of superhero movies like Justice League. Why do you think these larger-than-life comic book characters continue to enthrall viewers?

  • Do you prefer individual superhero stories or team-based adventures? What are the pros and cons of an ensemble movie? How does this one compare to others like The Avengers or Guardians of the Galaxy?

  • Do you consider any of the Justice League members role models? How do they exemplify important character strengths like teamwork and courage? What do they learn over the course of the movie?

  • What do you hope to see in the next Justice League movie? What do you think of the post-credit scene that hints at the team's next challenge?

Movie details

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