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The Flash is fast moving fun

Finally, after several years of postponed release due to various circumstances such as changes in director, the COVID-19 pandemic, and post-production issues, Warner Bros. Pictures reases the long-awaited solo film of the DC Comics character, The Flash. Andy Muschietti helms the film from a screenplay by Christina Hodson, which takes inspiration from the comic book storyline Flashpoint.

Following the events of Justice League, Barry Allen / The Flash (Ezra Miller) longs for a sense of normalcy. Going against the judgment of Batman/Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck), Barry uses his superpowers to travel back in time to change past events, particularly the murder of his mother.

Barry's actions to protect his loved ones have resulted in an irreversible change in the future. Consequently, he finds himself trapped in a realm where General Zod (Michael Shannon) has reemerged and endangers everything, with no superheroes to offer aid. With nowhere to turn, Barry must coax a different Batman (Michael Keaton) out of retirement and rescue the imprisoned Kryptonian.

Naturally, since this isn't Barry's universe, it's not the extraterrestrial he's looking for but Kara Zor-El / Supergirl (Sasha Calle). To save the world that he is in and return to the future he knows, Barry must join forces with his younger self, an older caped crusader and a different person of steel. Like my review for another big comic book movie that recently hit theaters, I want to keep my review spoiler free as possible.

No matter how positive the early fan and test screenings were.The Flash races into theaters with two targets on its back. The DCU movies have always been controversial, and recently there has been concern over the off-screen behavior of the film's star, Ezra Miller, due to inappropriate actions. As we all know, James Gunn is now leading the DCEU and has confirmed that this film would reset the continuity. Thankfully the film's director and screenwriter have crafted a crowd-pleasing swan song.

The Flash starts on a high note showing Barry juggling his superhero duties and everyday life. While it's heavy on CGI in some spots, the opening action sequence wouldn't have worked without it. Miller is having a blast in the role and can deliver one-liners effectively while saving the day. It was also great to see Affleck in action as Batman one last time.

I want to commend Christina Hodson on the dialogue moments she uses to set up Barry's reasoning for traveling back in time. Kudos to Hodson for making a sensible time-travel story that doesn't try to confuse its viewers. It's a shame that Miller is toast for the foreseeable future because he has some great moments in the film. Miller has to portray two different versions of Barry, who have different personalities and does so with ease.

Additionally, I took a liking to Sasha Calle's take on Supergirl. I never watched the heroine's show on The CW and only have memories of Helen Slater portraying the character in the 1984 bomb. Calle brings the right of physicality to the film. Michael Shannon was also enjoyable as Zod.

The big question, though, and why I'm sure many folks will see the film concerns Michael Keaton's as the caped crusader. In a word, phenomenal! The audience's reaction to Keaton putting on the ask and seeing his old toys on screen was infectious. He hasn't lost a step as the character and glided back naturally.

Filled with applause-worthy cameos, meta references, ubergeek fan service, and winning performances, The Flash is an entertaining mass crowd-pleaser.

Final Grade: B+

The Flash opens in theaters on June 15th.


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