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Lego DC Comics Super Heroes – Aquaman: Rage of Atlantis

Lego DC Comics Super Heroes – Aquaman: Rage of Atlantis
Studio: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
Format: Available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD
Home Video Release Date: Digital; Home Video - June 31, 2018

Synopsis: The King of Atlantis must make some difficult decisions to ensure the future of his ocean realm. Under attack from Atrocitus and the Red Lanterns, Aquaman realizes he must relinquish his sovereignty and go on a journey to regain his confidence before returning to his rightful throne. Along the way, Aquaman reunites with the Justice League – including Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and newest member Jessica Cruz/Green Lantern – to conquer Atlantis’ latest enemy and reemerge as the ruler of the Seven Seas.

Lego DC Comics Super Heroes: Aquaman - Rage of Atlantis voice cast features opposing forces Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad!) and Jonathan Adams (Last Man Standing) as Aquaman and Atrocitus, respectively. The film also stars LEGO DC Super Heroes core Justice League voice cast members Troy Baker (The Last of Us, Batman: Arkham Knight) as Batman, Nolan North (Pretty Little Liars) as Superman, Grey Griffin (DC Super Hero Girls) as Wonder Woman (and Lois Lane), and Khary Payton (Teen Titans Go!, The Walking Dead) as Cyborg.

Several actors reprise their roles from other notable Warner Bros. Animation/DC Entertainment productions. Alyson Stoner (Phineas and Ferb) returns to her Young Justice role as Batgirl/Barbara Gordon; Eric Bauza (The Adventures of Puss in Boots) recreates his role as Jimmy Olsen from Lego DC Super Heroes: The Flash; Cristina Milizia (Bunsen is a Beast) is back as Green Lantern/Jessica Cruz, as originally heard in DC Super Hero Girls; and Scott Menville (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) reprises his Teen Titans/Teen Titans Go! role as Robin/Damian Wayne. New to the LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes films are the voices of Susan Eisenberg (Justice League/Justice League Unlimited) as Mera, Fred Tatasciore (Batman Ninja) as Lobo, and Trevor Devall (Batman and Harley Quinn) as Ocean Master.

Lego DC Comics Superheroes: Aquaman - Rage of Atlantis Review
Written by Andrei Logigan, Edited by James Harvey

The King of Atlantis himself gets the spotlight in the fun, upbeat Lego DC Comics Super Heroes: Aquaman - Rage of Atlantis! And while Aquaman (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker) gets the spotlight, he also gets support from Green Lantern Jessica Cruz (voiced by Cristina Milizia), similar to how the Atom played a rather large role in The Scarlet Speedster-focused Lego DC Comics Super Heroes: The Flash animated movie. As with most of the other LEGO animated movies, this feature is pretty entertaining - there's a lot of comedy, adventure and even some drama featured in the story. The focus on multiple characters works well enough, and their interactions are for the most part fun to watch.

From the beginning we get to see Aquaman, a jovial hero who's always up for some adventure, even though he isn't too popular with the rest of the Justice League, and his powers don't always come in handy during a fight. As such he is easily defeated in rather comical ways by the intergalactic bounty hunter, Lobo (voiced by Fred Tatasciore). Despite all this, he is still happy to invite his fellow super-heroes to Atlantis, for his anniversary. The visuals for the underwater kingdom look pretty cool, considering it is all done with the help of LEGO bricks. In Atlantis, we also meet Mera (voiced by Susan Eisenberg), Aquaman's wife. There is a pretty funny running gag where Batman (voiced by Troy Baker) keeps updating the file he has on Aquaman, as they learn more about him. It works well as a more comical way to point out how the Dark Knight is always prepared for anyone and anything.

The story is fairly strait-forward - it all starts with Ocean Master (voiced by Trevor Devall), Aquaman's half-brother turning the inhabitants of Atlantis against their King, while also claiming he has no right to rule Atlantis because he is only half-Atlantean. The people of Atlantis are fueled by rage, courtesy of Atrocitus (voiced by Jonathan Adams), leader of the Red Lantern Corps, who can enslave minds with the power of rage. As a result, Aquaman decides to give up his crown, not even consulting with his wife, which prompts Mera to leave him. It's a pretty dramatic moment, which works well in contrast to the rest of the movie, where most of the scenes are either adventurous or just played for laughs.

The heroes are run out of Atlantis, but manage to use a device called the Seagate to teleport safely away. They end up on an alien world, from where pretty much all the water was stolen already by Atrocitus, hinting at his plans for Earth are as well. Given these conditions, Aquaman is weakened and to make matters worse, the planet has a red sun, which also weakens Superman (voiced by Nolan North. There are still amusing scenes to be found here, but the dire situation the heroes are in is still presented as such. The focus on Aquaman continues, with him delirious from the lack of water. He even becomes some sort of human divining rod, which the others use to locate some water.

As mentioned before, the movie also focuses on Jessica Cruz. Her interactions with her power ring are amusing, and her character arc here is basically her trying to be more confident in her powers and helping others. She gets to fight quite a few of the invading Atlantean armies, with some help from Batgirl and Damain Wayne’s Robin, voiced by Alyson Stoner and Scott Menville, respectively. I didn't mind their inclusion in the movie, but they did seem a little random of an addition. Their scenes are still entertaining though.

In the end the heroes manage to re-group and return to Atlantis, but they are all captured by Atrocitus. The villain has also double-crossed Ocean Master as well, as he plans on stealing the water from our planet which immediately rules out the possibility of Orm ruling the underwater kingdom. The relationship between the two half-brothers is presented rather well here, with the two having a more heart to heart talk given their desperate situation. It's a relationship that has been done before in other places, but it still manages to stay true to the characters' comic book roots, and is entertaining enough. There's also a neat scene where the other heroes convince Aquaman he truly is a great King, and how they have been taking him for granted for too long.

Aquaman proves he is worthy and the rightful ruler of Atlantis once he pulls the Trident out of the hand of King Poseidon's statue, thus fulfilling an old prophecy (think of it as an underwater Excalibur). He then gains enough confidence to coordinate the attack on Atrocitus' water stealing device, and the day is saved. He is also reunited with Mera, in a rather cute scene. After all this, he is still ready for more action, as he and the rest of the League prepare to leave on another adventure.

Overall, the movie was fun. The characters' journeys are presented well, with all of them learning some morals along the way. The interactions between all the characters are likewise fun. There are lots of jokes and gags, sometimes even nods to other DC Comics related events, spread throughout. The theme is still more of a comedy-adventure, and it works for the most part. It's cool how these movies are starting to focus on more than one character at a time, with the secondary hero's adventure usually connecting with the main story by the end. These LEGO movies are fun, and hopefully more will be released in due time. Lego DC Comics Super Heroes: Aquaman - Rage of Atlantis is a fine addition to the LEGO movie line and well worth checking out. Recommended


Trailer

Lego DC Comics Superheroes: DC Comics Super Heroes – Aquaman: Rage of Atlantis is available to own on DVD, Blu-ray and for Digital Download from from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.