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Lego Batman: The Movie —DC Super Heroes Unite (Blu-ray Review)

15 Jun, 2013 By: John Latchem

Animated, $19.98 DVD, $24.98 Blu-ray
Not rated.
Voices of Troy Baker, Charlie Schlatter, Clancy Brown, Christopher Corey Smith, Travis Willingham, Laura Bailey.

It’s a rare feat to create a piece of entertainment that is effective both as a parody and an example of the genre it’s meant to make fun of, but Lego Batman: The Movie somehow manages to achieve that balance.

As a superhero movie, it’s fun, action-packed, loaded with great visual effects and provides a nice showcase for some of DC Comics’ top heroes and villains. As a comedy, it offers some great references to specific scenes from “Batman” movies (for example, the opening scene is just a Lego version of the main titles for the 1989’s Batman) while also tweaking superhero clichés in general.

It also makes great use of “Lego physics,” the fact that the plot can take advantage of everything being made out of Lego bricks, such as a great gag that takes advantage of the fact that almost every Lego face looks the same. There are great details in the animation, too, such as the occasional fingerprint being visible when the light hits a character in the right way.

The crux of the action involves Lex Luthor recruiting the Joker to modify a batch of mind-altering gas so Lex can brainwash the population into voting for him for president. As payment, Lex gives Joker a gun that tears apart shiny black bricks, such as the ones all Batman’s vehicles are made of. So Batman teams up with Superman to stop them, and the villains attack with a giant robot, and the Justice League shows up, and we all learn a valuable lesson about teamwork.

Anyway, the Blu-ray includes a few cool extras, such as a 14-minute featurette in which a Lego expert shows kids how to create a Lego scene with stop-motion animation. There’s also the top five short films (about three minutes each) that were honored by a Lego DC Heroes filmmaking contest.

And to further the superhero mood, the disc contains three bonus cartoons from “Batman: The Brave and the Bold” and “Teen Titans.”

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