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Justice League – Gotham City Breakout (Blu-ray Review)

Gotham-BreakoutFighting crime is a full-time job and Batman NEVER takes a vacation. That is until he finally agrees to let Batgirl and Nightwing take him on a long overdue trip – leaving Gotham City under the watchful eye of the Justice League in LEGO® DC Comics Super Heroes – Justice League: Gotham City Breakout. Produced by Warner Bros. Animation,DC Entertainment and the LEGO® Group, the film will be distributed by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on on July 12, 2016 on Blu-rayTM Combo Pack, DVD and Digital HD. The Blu-rayTM and DVD releases will include an exclusive Nightwing LEGO®figurine, while supplies last.  LEGO® DC Comics Super Heroes – Justice League: Gotham City Breakout is directed by Matt Peters and Mel Zwyer from a script by Jim Krieg. Sam Register, Jill Wilfert and Jason Cosler are executive producers. Benjamin Melniker & Michael Uslan are co-executive producers, and Brandon Vietti is supervising producer.

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Film 

When Batgirl and Nightwing take Batman on a trip down memory lane – literally – to visit one of the key mentors from his formative years, it’s up to the Justice League to keep Gotham City crime-free. But neither situation proves to be a “vacation” as the Bat trio encounters old nemeses on their adventure, and the Justice League discovers just how busy Batman is on a regular basis. It’s a brick-tastic battle on two fronts as Batman, Batgirl and Nightwing take on Bane and Deathstroke, while the Justice League – with some help from a few Teen Titans – fends off an assault by many of Batman’s infamous adversaries to ensure Gotham City’s safety.

This newest LEGO Justice League adventure, Gotham City Breakout is another silly jaunt with all the DC characters.  However, this time around it is much more kid friendly.  Some of the adult fun is still there, but in much smaller doses than normal.  Its for the kids, and hey, they’re allowed it.  My son and daughter watched and really enjoyed it, laughing and engaged the whole way through.  Its characters they love, doing what they do while also not afraid to be silly.

Its interesting to see what sort of effect other shows and movies have had on the DC catalog (Like Marvel).  Thanks to a memorable turn on the show Arrow, someone like Deathstroke has become a bigger presence within these animated films.  He used to be a deep track kinda guy.  Also nice is the Teen Titans showing up, as well as the continued fun of having Nightwing being a presence.  When I was a kid, it was always just a Robin character and hush hush on Nightwing (Until very later on Batman: The Animated Series).

This new LEGO adventure really wasn’t for me.  Its totally for the kids.  But, there is some terrific voice talent assembled here in the film.  Tara Strong and Tom Kenny reprise their Harley Quinn and Penguin roles for some added fun.  Everything works in doing what it does, doing it quite well.  Expectations should be for what it really is (Seriously, Batman going on vacation should trigger than this is not for the 10+ year old crowd).  And for what it really is, its really solid.

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Video 

Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1

Clarity/Detail:  LEGO Justice League: Gotham City Breakout looks very good as you’d imagine, but you can help but wonder if it couldn’t have been a bit more vibrant and poppy.  The image, which is full of detail and plenty sharp, feels almost reserved and held in check.  It looks very good, but you can’t help imagine it could have looked a hair better.

Depth:  Solid spacing and foreground background relation.  Movements are smooth.  Its easy to image this as a natural 3D feature.

Black Levels:  Blacks are solid and provide good outline and shading.  No crushing witnessed.

Color Reproduction:  Colors are fun and varied in a very primary-like usage.  Most of the more vivid stuff comes in the form of the characters.  The rest is rather boring, like the dingy, yellow/dark colored Gotham City.

Flesh Tones:  N/A

Noise/Artifacts: Clean

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Audio 

Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, German 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 2.0 Dolby Digital, Danish 2.0 Dolby Digital, Finnish 2.0 Dolby Digital, Norwegian 2.0 Dolby Digital, Swedish 2.0 Dolby Digital, Polish 5.1 Dolby Digital, Japanese 5.1 Dolby Digital

Subtitles: English SDH, French, German SDH, Japanese, Spanish, Danish, Finnish, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish

Dynamics:  A very solid, well balanced presentation.  Everything in this mix feels free of one another, distinct and well-rounded.  

Low Frequency Extension:  Action sequences, vehicles, punches and weapons all provide a good thump from the subwoofer.

Surround Sound Presentation:  Front speakers channel some good intricate movements, action and character placement.  Rear channels provide primarily ambiance and a lesser volume version of the music and score.

Dialogue Reproduction:  Dialogue is loud, crisp and clear.  Diction is terrific.

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Extras 

The edition for this review comes with an exclusive Nightwing LEGO figurine.  It also comes with a DVD Copy and Ultraviolet Digital Copy.

The only supplemental feature on the disc is a trailer for LEGO Scooby Doo: Haunted Hollywood.

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Summary 

A very kid friendly, DC Comics LEGO adaptation charms a bit and thrills the kiddos in LEGO Justice League: Gotham City Breakout.  There are plenty of DC characters to enjoy grouped up here in this movie.  The film comes in a very good presentation, but severely lacks in the extras department.  If you have kids into comic book superheros, then grab it for them, they’ll probably dig it quite a bit.

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Writer/Reviewer, lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash, Brandon hosts the Cult Cinema Cavalcade podcast on the Creative Zombie Studios Network (www.cultcinemacavalcade.com) You can also find more essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

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