– by Joseph Jammer Medina

After BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE came out and left most critics and fans hot and bothered, all eyes shifted towards SUICIDE SQUAD. Warner Bros and DC Entertainment began using the super-villain team-up as a way to change the conversation, and even the most ardent cynics became hopeful that David Ayer’s film would be an important pivot point for the DCEU. After all, it wasn’t written or directed by anyone involved with the first two films in the new canon (MAN OF STEEL, BATMAN V SUPERMAN), and had an exciting premise that could provide the kind of unpredictable thrills delivered by a film like DEADPOOL

Then the film came out, and promptly met a very similar fate. SUICIDE SQUAD received practically the same critical response as DAWN OF JUSTICE, and only a marginally stronger CinemaScore from moviegoers.

So now fans, once again, have to look to the future. Which of the upcoming DC films will get the budding Cinematic Universe on the right track?

When it comes to WONDER WOMAN, the buzz so far has been largely positive, and there’s little reason to think the film won’t be a hit when it arrives in June of 2017. But what about JUSTICE LEAGUE? That film, which looms much larger than WW because it’ll be the DCEU’s answer to Marvel’s AVENGERS films- putting together an all-star cast of their top tier heroes- comes out only five months later. Probing eyes seem to be skipping over WW and focusing on JUSTICE LEAGUE already, and that may be because it’s made by the same folks that made the polarizing BATMAN V SUPERMAN.

The big question is: Can they take the constructive criticisms levied against BATMAN V SUPERMAN– some of which is also being thrown at SUICIDE SQUAD– and make the kind of adjustments required to make JUSTICE LEAGUE live up to its potential?

Ezra Miller, who plays Barry Allen, aka The Flash, in JUSTICE LEAGUE, seems to think so.

In a chat with MTV, the actor was asked whether or not the negative critical response for SUICIDE SQUAD has affected the JUSTICE LEAGUE cast at all. Miller says it has, but only in a positive way.

In his own words:

“You needn’t look any further than the Suicide Squad director and cast response to the negative reviews to feel how negative critiques motivate us. Ultimately, we can’t base anything on [the critical response]. As artists, we aim to please absolutely everybody with our work, but we also know that we have to keep expressing ourselves as best as we can express ourselves.”

When asked about the SUICIDE SQUAD haters out there, Miller used a song to describe the impact they’ve had on himself and the rest of the JL cast:

“It’s like that T.I. song, ‘Motivation.’”

Miller has quietly become the most exciting thing about JUSTICE LEAGUE. Between the tales from the recent set visits that claimed he was improvising some truly scene-stealing hijinx, to his playful exchange with Ben Affleck’s Bruce Wayne in the Comic-Con trailer, and now his surprise cameo in SUICIDE SQUAD, he seems to be the guy everyone wants to talk to, or about.

I believe in him, and I’m hopeful about JUSTICE LEAGUE. How about you?


Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.