Ever since the debut of DC Films’ Justice League, fans almost immediately began talking about its home video release. Many hope to see director Zack Snyder’s original cut, while others want to at least see an extended version of what we got in theaters. Currently, there’s no word on whether we’ll get a new cut of the movie, but it’s unlikely we’ll see Snyder’s complete original vision (which was already being changed before the film began production).
And yet, with all this discussion, it begs the question: Does Justice League *really* need an extended cut? That is something we will explore today.
But first, let’s discuss some of the benefits. It’s no secret that Justice League has been struggling at the box office, and it’s probably not going to break even. However, DC movies tend to perform really well on Blu-Ray, so there’s hope that Justice League‘s sales will generate some profit out of it. And slapping an “Extended Cut” or “Director’s Cut” or something else on the cover could give sales a boost. So, if Warner Bros. wants to get some kind of money out of this movie (which is likely), then releasing an alternative cut on home video would help.
Additionally, fans have expressed concerns over Justice League‘s short runtime, which was mandated even before production. As a result of the two-hour runtime, several deleted scenes and even whole characters were left on the cutting room floor. While they can just as easily attached them as deleted scenes, putting them into the actual movie for an extended cut could be beneficial.
But this brings us back to the original question. Does Justice League really need it?
In my opinion, the movie did a fine job telling its story without relying on filler subplots. The plot was easy to follow, and we learned just enough about the characters’ backstories to get into them. We knew Flash and Victor got their powers from accidents, and we knew about their tragic pasts. We saw some of Aquaman’s world, but it makes sense to not show too much now, since James Wan is building Atlantis himself for next year’s movie. And sure, we could’ve gotten better development for Steppenwolf, but considering the character’s bad CGI and boring characterization, you could only do so much for him. Point being – you don’t need so many hours to explicitly explain every single aspect of a character’s backstory to like them. We meet the character, we learn their backstory through dialogue, the character cracks some one-liners, and boom, let’s get into the story. You know just enough to get in, and you go from there.
Also, Justice League is not like Batman v Superman, which got a three-hour director’s cut. That film included a LOT of subplots, characters, and so on. It got to the point where two and a half hours wasn’t enough time to properly cover it all. Fortunately, we got the Ultimate Edition, which made sense of the story and filled plot holes. Does Justice League have any gaping plot holes? Do we need to see another hour or so of these characters to get them? Again, the film has a very streamlined plot, and putting much more footage risks bogging down the entire movie with filler.
Other things that fans have really wanted to see in Justice League include Superman’s black suit, Iris West, Junkie XL’s score, and a Darkseid cameo? The way I see it, most of these things are just bonuses to the main project, and with or without them, there’s no major impact left. Superman’s resurrection would have played out the same, whether he was shirtless or if he wore a black suit. We know Iris is gonna be in Flashpoint, and if she doesn’t fit into the story of Justice League, then should she still be in it? Same deal with Darkseid; they can always bring him into a future DC movie without a cameo in this one.
And re: Junkie XL’s score. We don’t know exactly how much he actually did for Justice League, if anything. And even then, they got Danny freaking Elfman to take over. Junkie is a very talented composer, and it would’ve been interesting to see what he could do for this movie. But if I had to choose between him and one of Hollywood’s most iconic composers….well, yeah. That being said, I loved Elfman’s score anyways. I loved how he weaved the iconic Batman and Superman themes into it, while the rest fit the movie well.
I can go on and on all day about whether or not Justice League actually needs an extended cut. If the movie does get one, I’ll be first in line to buy it. I loved the movie, and I want to support it. And there are surely pros to an extended cut, but you can just as easily say that the movie’s good enough without it.
Do you think Justice League truly needs an extended cut? Let us know on Twitter at @WatchtowerBabel.
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