Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons is a 2022 American CG-animated DC superhero film from Warner Bros. with titular characters.
Directed by Matt Peters (Teen Titans Go! & DC Super Hero Girls: Mayhem in the Multiverse; Injustice; Justice League Dark: Apokolips War; Lego DC: Shazam – Magic & Monsters; Lego DC Batman: Family Matters; LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes: Aquaman – Rage of Atlantis; Scooby-Doo! Shaggy’s Showdown; Lego DC Comics Superheroes: Justice League – Gotham City Breakout) from a screenplay written by Jeremy Adams (Mortal Kombat Legends: Snow Blind; Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms; Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge; Scooby-Doo: Return to Zombie Island).
“Ahhhh, to be young … and charged with saving the world from impending doom! That’s the burden that eleven-year-old Jonathan Kent and reluctant young sidekick Damian Wayne face in this all-new DC animated movie.
On his birthday, Jonathan Kent learns his dad is Superman and that he has latent superpowers of his own! He also meets the legendary Dark Knight and current Boy Wonder, Damian. But when the two boys are forced to team up to protect their loved ones from a hostile alien force, will they become the Super Sons they’re destined to be?”
Coming Soon reported that: “The movie is the first CG-animated film based on a DC property, as opposed to the 2D animation that is most commonly used for DC Comics-based animated movies. The villain appears to be Starro the Conqueror, the mind-controlling alien starfish last seen in 2021’s The Suicide Squad.”
There are tons of animated DC movies released every year, but Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons stands out from the crowd by offering fans an amusing and insightful examination of a team-up between two clearly mismatched heroes who both found themselves outside of their respective comfort zones as they were forced to save the world from an invading entity. Director Matt Peters created something which DC fans will no doubt cherish for years to come, and even more casual viewers are still in for a good time.
Jack Dylan Grazer voices Jonathan Kent, a bored and frustrated farm boy who feels destined for more. Without going too far into spoiler territory, Jonathan soon learns that his father is Superman, which quickly leads the teenage protagonist to reconsider his outlook. But Jonathan does not have too long to wallow in his newfound delight, as a sinister alien called Starro soon decides to conquer Earth, taking control of Superman and Batman in the process. This leads Jonathan to join forces with Robin to prevent Starro from completing his evil plan, and despite clearly being unprepared for the sheer responsibility which was thrust upon them, the young heroes still gave their mission everything they had. There was clearly a message here about how anyone can become a hero when the need arises, something we all clearly need to be reminded of at times.
Damian Wayne is usually viewed as the least likeable version of Robin because his sombre and irate personality combined with his open narcissism and his exaggerated sense of self-worth. Thankfully, the writers of Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons toned down Damian’s usually bleak and arrogant personality, so he was depicted in the film as more of a typical moody teenager who just happens to also be the biological son of Batman instead of being a zealot who constantly monologues about how he alone is destined to save humanity. And while the character usually tries to hide his emotions from the outside world in most stories, this version of Damian Wayne was also a little more willing to openly express his feelings. His reaction to being rejected from the Teen Titans will almost move you to tears, and the way in which he practically collapses with grief upon mistakenly believing that Jonathan has been killed will also have you crying along with him. The Thundermans star Jack Griffo certainly did a commendable job of voicing this somewhat more emotive version of Damian Wayne, and the actor’s audible performance helped to turn a sullen and introverted loner into someone who viewers will want to succeed at all costs. And despite his outwardly ill-tempered demeanour, Damian also keeps a cow in the Batcave, for no clear reason beyond his apparent desire to keep a pet cow. While Damian clearly likes to think of himself as an adult despite still being a teenager, details like this clearly show his more childlike side leaking through the cracks as he struggles to ignore his youth and his apparent longing for a normal teenage life.
One of the most commendable aspects of Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons was how the filmmakers clearly harnessed the conflicting personalities of the two young heroes to great effect, with the more experienced and assertive Robin clearly struggling not to lose his temper as he guides the less confident and unpractised Jonathan Kent on their mission to save the world. It quickly becomes clear that Robin is not a character who likes to ask for help, and the way in which he effectively teaches Jonathan to be a superhero throughout their journey was both hilarious and informative about the leadership qualities which Damian clearly never knew he had. At the same time, Jonathan was clearly determined to do the right thing regardless of his lack of experience, making him a surprisingly relatable character who just happens to possess extraordinary powers and abilities. In return for teaching him how to be a superhero, Jonathan teaches Damian how to milk his pet cow, in a scene so bizarre you almost feel thankful to Warner Bros. for not cutting it. The chemistry between the two young heroes throughout the film was undeniable, and we can only hope to see them teaming up again if a sequel ends up being produced.
Computer-generated animation may seem jarring to viewers who are more accustomed to watching hand-drawn DC adaptations, but it also resulted in some truly spectacular action set-pieces. From the sight of Jonathan and Damian using their combined skills to take down members of the brainwashed Justice League, to the damaged space station known as the Watchtower hurtling towards Earth, there was plenty of satisfying eye candy on display. Even if you massively prefer hand-drawn animation over CGI, the stunning visuals will no doubt keep you invested.
And yes, before you ask, the destruction of Superman’s homeward of Krypton was depicted at the start of Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons, because we clearly have not seen it depicted about a million times before. Heck, DC League of Super Pets, which was also released in 2022, similarly opened with Krypton’s destruction, so it almost seems as if DC has to meet a yearly quota of projects showing the planet being blown to smithereens. Famed voice actor Nolan North delivers a decent performance as Jor-El during Krypton’s death scene in Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons, but aside from the addition of Starro, there really was not much about this depiction of the planet’s demise which set it apart from the various other examples of the destruction of Krypton shown in other DC adaptations.
Most of the other voice actors featured in Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons delivered strong performances, with regular Batman performer Troy Baker bringing his signature gruff and intimidating coals as the Caped Crusader, and Travis Willingham also conveying another fine turn as the more optimistic Superman. Laura Bailey also did what she could as Lois Lane, although a bizarre subplot involving her former romance with US President Lex Luthor (Darin De Paul) seemed like a last-minute addition which added very little to the overall plot. However, De Paul also voiced Starro, and it was unquestionably hilarious to hear the giant alien starfish describing how his victims will suffer excruciating deaths simply because they offended him. Seeing as Starro was depicted as more of a mindless monster throughout his live-action appearance in The Suicide Squad, it was certainly refreshing for him to be given a voice and a more defined personality in Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons. It might sound strange, but Starro’s surprisingly nuanced and comedic representation in Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons might even leave you feeling a small amount of sympathy for him in the final act.
Overall, Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons served as a hugely enjoyable insight into how two enthusiastic yet unprepared heroes managed to use their combined wits and skills in order to save the world and everything else they hold dear. The mismatched personalities of Damian and Jonathan and the undeniable chemistry between the two young heroes certainly made this worth watching, as did the entertaining action sequences and the truly unique and bizarre antagonist.
This might even be one of the best animated DC adaptations of 2022, making it essential viewing for fans and newcomers alike. And since it will probably be remembered as one of the finest animated superhero films of the decade, this really is an adventure you cannot afford to miss.
David Gelmini, MOVIES and MANIA
“One of the strongest DC Original Animated Movies in years, Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons marries a gorgeous animation style and solid cast to weave a fantastic DC Comics adaptation. Each of the characters is fully formed and realized by their respective actors, while the story features a breadth worthy of its leads.” CBR
” …Battle of the Super Sons makes a strong case for the potential of this kind of animation. Everyone looks fantastic and the comic-like expressions and poses make this movie stand out even among other DC animated films. Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons is a good time all around. Its pacing is a bit stilted, but the interactions between the characters and the exciting action make up for it.” 7.5 out of 10, Coming Soon
“Even though it hits a small bump or two along the way, it should still hit the spots for fans and, likely, leave them wanting for another Super Sons feature. With its clear love of the source material, an enjoyable story, a tremendous score and slick action beats – led by two very likeable leads – fans should find plenty to enjoy in this playful adventure. Highly Recommended!” DC Animated
“Visually the film is stunning with plenty of vibrant and striking visuals. The storytelling has a classic quality with loving homages to Richard Donner’s Superman movies as well as loving use off aspects of the canon that could easily be ridiculed. All told it’s an excellent animated entry into the DC universe with a lot to offer.” 4 out of 5 stars, Kneel Before Blog
“Director Matt Peters (Injustice) navigates the action scenes well with a nice flow. Peters gets how to showcase characters’ powers and skills from the ideal perspectives to fully show the scope and magnitude of their abilities. Super Sons hits all the right marks with a clear love of the characters’ portrayal and visuals from the source material making for an elite Warner Bros. Animation DC film.” 10 out of 10, Lyles Movie Files
“Despite the fairly basic plotting and PG-13 rating, Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons has a fair amount of mayhem, and as befits an October release a couple of nods to the horror genre […] there are several scenes with a focus on family, father and son relationships, etc. […] in Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons it feels forced and preachy rather than an organic part of the story.” 3.5/5, Voices from the Balcony
Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons premiered on October 7, 2022, at the New York Comic-Con. It will be available on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and Digital on October 18, 2022. Available to pre-order via Amazon.com
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