Blu-ray Review: SUPERMAN/BATMAN APOCALYPSE

Warner Home Video
Release date: September 28, 2010
MSRP: $29.99
Starring the voices of Andre Braugher, Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly, and Summer Glau
Screenplay by Tab Murphy
Directed by Lauren Montgomery

The ninth direct-to-video DC Universe animated feature is based on SUPERMAN/BATMAN Vol. 2 by Jeph Loeb and Michael Turner, telling of Supergirl/Kara Zor-El’s first appearance on Earth. Initially feared by humankind and speaking only Kryptonian herself, she is found by Batman, who takes her to the Batcave for analysis. Superman is overjoyed to have a cousin, but is torn by competing instincts to protect her and allow her personal freedom. Eventually, Superman concedes that Kara needs training only Wonder Woman (Susan Eisenberg) and the Amazons can provide. The supremely evil Darkseid also tries to harness Kara’s power, kidnapping her to Apokolips and making her leader of his Furies.

Known for her portrayals of powerful science fiction heroes River Tam (Firefly, Serenity) and Cameron Phillips (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles), Summer Glau is a solid choice to play the dangerously powerful yet impressionable Supergirl. She joins Warner Bros. Animation’s best known voices of Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman as the three legends follow Kara’s trail to Apokolips, fighting Darkseid’s forces on three fronts.

Given the large scope of its action, I was pleased with the movie’s pacing. Best of all, the action takes a truly surprising final turn.

The Blu-ray/DVD combo release includes a featurette on Supergirl, three background featurettes on Jack Kirby’s New Gods, two Supergirl-centered episodes of Superman: The Animated Series, and a Green Arrow short starring the voice of Neal McDonough.

–Gerald So