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  1. #1
    Mighty Member tib2d2's Avatar
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    Default Which DC animated movie is truest to the source material?

    Which one of the DC animated features was most true to the source material? Now this could be both good or bad, since not everything translates well to a movie. Putting aside how good or bad the movie was, which one was closest to the story in the comics?

  2. #2
    Leftbrownie Alpha's Avatar
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    Probably a tie between Year One, The Dark Knight Returns and New Frontier. I think The Dark Knight Returns keeps just about everything I can recall from the comic, so it's probably that one. I think Year One reduced some small parts. Those three also have the most faithful adaptations of the art style.

    But there are quite a few movies that adapted a subpar or flawed storyline and improved it a lot. I think Batman Under The Red Hood is the best example of it, but I also appreciate:

    Death and Reign of Superman (I just never enjoyed the original story itself and thought the adaptation had a more streamlined and thematically consistent development of the villain plot)

    and Batman vs Robin (I didn't love it but the third act had a lot more to say than whatever Scott Snyder was trying to do with City of Owls. Also liked how they used the future Damian from Morrison)
    Last edited by Alpha; 02-14-2021 at 02:09 PM.

  3. #3
    Mighty Member tib2d2's Avatar
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    ok cool, I haven't seen any of the three you mentioned first, so I'll check those out. However I'm one of the rare folks that never really liked Dark Knight Returns.

  4. #4
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    I'd say New Frontier, largely because it's one of the first.

  5. #5
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    Year One and The Dark Knight Returns for sure.

    New Frontier too probably (its been a while since I read the comic).

    The Killing Joke is pretty faithful...after the first 15-20 minutes or so.

  6. #6
    Astonishing Member Adekis's Avatar
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    I think Dark Knight Returns and Batman: Year One are about evenly matched.

    I think of Justice League: The New Frontier movie as almost more of a companion piece to the DC: The New Frontier comic than a direct adaptation, if that makes sense.

    Darwyn Cooke worked on the movie, and it vastly streamlines the plot, keeps the same aesthetic and mood, and makes it easier to digest the story if the book is a little too much for you. When I first tried to read the comic, I had a hard time following it (I was a kid, after all) and I got a little bored trying to figure out where the story was going and why there were so few scenes with super-heroes in them. The movie gave me a much more direct "in" to the story, and after I experienced it that way, I had a much easier time going back to the book. Since that young age I've reread The New Frontier several times, and I think it's a brilliant story that conveys a very encompassing sense of mid 20th century America, all its triumph, all its horror.

    But I would have taken a much longer time to understand and appreciate the comic without the movie to open the way, and I sincerely believe that the movie, being so much less detailed, is fundamentally incomplete unless you also read the comic!

    By contrast, Year One and DKR can, on some level, stand in for the comic. I mean, I don't think they should, not entirely, but I think they kind of can.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adekis View Post
    I think Dark Knight Returns and Batman: Year One are about evenly matched.

    I think of Justice League: The New Frontier movie as almost more of a companion piece to the DC: The New Frontier comic than a direct adaptation, if that makes sense.

    Darwyn Cooke worked on the movie, and it vastly streamlines the plot, keeps the same aesthetic and mood, and makes it easier to digest the story if the book is a little too much for you. When I first tried to read the comic, I had a hard time following it (I was a kid, after all) and I got a little bored trying to figure out where the story was going and why there were so few scenes with super-heroes in them. The movie gave me a much more direct "in" to the story, and after I experienced it that way, I had a much easier time going back to the book. Since that young age I've reread The New Frontier several times, and I think it's a brilliant story that conveys a very encompassing sense of mid 20th century America, all its triumph, all its horror.

    But I would have taken a much longer time to understand and appreciate the comic without the movie to open the way, and I sincerely believe that the movie, being so much less detailed, is fundamentally incomplete unless you also read the comic!

    By contrast, Year One and DKR can, on some level, stand in for the comic. I mean, I don't think they should, not entirely, but I think they kind of can.
    I think the New Frontier movie streamlined the story to a large extent to justify it being labelled a Justice League movie. So while staying faithful to the basic plot, its feels more like an 'origin story' for the Silver Age JLA than a more expansive look at the origins of the Silver Age DCU.

    The characters who're being focused on are Batman, Martian Manhunter, Superman, Wonder Woman, Flash and Green Lantern AKA 6 out of 7 of the classic JL founders (with Aquaman getting a cameo at the end). Not that other characters from the book don't appear, but when they do, its mainly to serve the stories of the Big Seven.

    I feel whenever we get the next big reboot of the DC Cinematic Universe or whatever, New Frontier is actually a great structure for a live-action JL movie.

  8. #8
    Extraordinary Member Restingvoice's Avatar
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    Year One I guess

  9. #9
    Astonishing Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bat39 View Post
    I think the New Frontier movie streamlined the story to a large extent to justify it being labelled a Justice League movie. So while staying faithful to the basic plot, its feels more like an 'origin story' for the Silver Age JLA than a more expansive look at the origins of the Silver Age DCU.

    The characters who're being focused on are Batman, Martian Manhunter, Superman, Wonder Woman, Flash and Green Lantern AKA 6 out of 7 of the classic JL founders (with Aquaman getting a cameo at the end). Not that other characters from the book don't appear, but when they do, its mainly to serve the stories of the Big Seven.

    I feel whenever we get the next big reboot of the DC Cinematic Universe or whatever, New Frontier is actually a great structure for a live-action JL movie.
    Yeah, I think that is a big part of the streamlining, great point!

    Reading the book as a kid, I had to juggle a bunch of characters I didn't know or barely knew, along with occasional appearances by the likes of Hal, Kal, Bruce, etc.

    The movie keeps the same bouncing around structure as the book to a certain extent, but you're absolutely right to say it focuses more on future JLAers and less on say, Slam Bradley. Still, I stand by what I said- at that age, diving into the richer experience of the book wa in some ways only possible because I saw the movie.
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  10. #10

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    The Dark Knight Returns and Year One.

  11. #11
    Three Legged Member married guy's Avatar
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    Flashpoint Paradox wasn't too bad either.

    Probably Year One was closest to the source material. DKR would be a close second.
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  12. #12
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    I think in some commentary I heard, they streamlined New Frontier to get a script down to the running time. To do so, they had to cut a lot from the comic book.

  13. #13

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    Year One and Dark Knight Returns. It's not even close.

  14. #14
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    New Frontier was really streamlined. I wonder if it could have been made into a 2 part film.

  15. #15
    Extraordinary Member Vordan's Avatar
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    They pretty much recreated DKR panel for panel and line by line.
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