Updated: Aug 25, 2019
This Review Was Conducted Thanks to Wonder-Con 2019 & DC Entertainment.
A crossover that many thought unfathomable has finally made its way to an actual film adaptation in the quite literally the Golden Age for superhero films, with DC holding the front on the animated side of things. This crossover however, melds properties from two distinctly flavored companies with two targeted demographics that are nearly leaps and bounds away from each other, DC itself and Nickelodeon with Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Fortunately, this unique crossover, adapted from the comic book series, revels in how ludicrous it is, solidifying itself as an irresistible treat of both franchises that left massive, Joker-like grins on every Wonder-Con attendee present in the Anaheim Convention Center.
This latest film from DC Animation is easily one of the most delightful. For one, it is filled to the brim with excellent easter eggs and references as we see these two incredibly varied yet perfectly composed rosters of characters clash in several notable, crowd-pleasing moments. These references are littered throughout and never become the focus or take away from what is at the core of this film-sheer wish fulfillment of what if this happened. It’s every ten-year-old’s dream as they play with their action figures. What if the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were to fight against and with Batman and his fellow allies? What if Leonardo had to face against the Caped Crusader himself? These are the questions that propel the film along at a snappy, exciting pace, always keeping the audience on the edge of their seat in just sheer questioning as the filmmakers churn out every idea they have and not once does it feel overstated.
Even though the film is mostly centered around Batman, rightfully so as it was his 80th Anniversary this past Saturday, what impressed and stayed on my mind the most, even hours after the world premiere, were the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles themselves. Writer Marly Halpern-Graser and director Jake Castorena capture their childish mannerisms and flairs with such grace that it felt like an old-school cartoon at times, complete with the infuriating yet nostalgic puns and one-liners. On the other hand, admittedly only at certain times, Graser smartly implements lines of dialogue that implicate that these characters are in fact in a modern world. Juxtaposed against the bonkers characters and story, it grounds the film in some sort of foundation, preventing the story from falling into an endless