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July 29, 2022 / Warner Bros. Pictures Canada

Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Kate McKinnon

Directed By: Jared Stern

Krypto the Super-Dog and Superman are inseparable best friends, sharing the same superpowers and fighting crime side by side in Metropolis. However, Krypto must master his own powers for a rescue mission when Superman is kidnapped.

Written By Darren

Rating 4 out of 5

DC League of Super-Pets is without a doubt the best animated film of the year so far, serving up plenty of laughs, excitement and a whole ton of heart, making it an absolute blast for the entire film.

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart are a killer comedic duo, having already done four live action films together. But their latest film takes them both to two genres they have never been before: animation and superheroes. For the DCEU’s first foray into the world of animation, our main character is Krypto, Superman’s best friend. However, when Superman and the rest of the Justice League are kidnapped by a diabolical, super powered guinea pig, Krypto must team up with a bunch of super powered animals to save Clark from certain doom. The film follows your typical superhero team up origin story: an accident gives the pets powers, they learn to control their powers, find the inner hero within themselves, and save the day. It’s a proven plot formula that works, and this film does a wonderful job of it thanks to its characters. Each pet has their own power and personality, combined with a great voice performance.

Dwayne Johnson is excellent as Krypto, giving our main character that heroic and charismatic personality that is required for every superhero. Kevin Hart is a lot of fun as Ace, and once again has great comedic chemistry with Johnson. Kate McKinnon is truly sinister in the funnest way imaginable as Lulu, easily delivering one of her best performances in a film to date. Diego Luna and Vanessa Bayer are delightful as Chip and PB, delivering two energetic performances that create truly endearing characters. But it is Natasha Lyonne who steals the show as Merton, who has the best lines and the driest delivery of them that will leave you dying of laughter. Portraying another iconic superhero for the second time this summer is John Krasinski, taking on the role of Clark Kent/Superman. Krasinski poses that wholesome warmth that makes Clark and Superman that idealistic hero that we have come to know over the past four decades. And Keanu Reeves as Batman, what perfect casting! Reeves is hilarious as he wallows in Bruce’s dark past and depression, in the most Keanu way imaginable.

The film itself has a great mix of comedy, with lots of laughs for all ages to enjoy and some truly hilarious moments for all the parents in the audience and the diehard DC fans. It’s truly the first animated film of the year to offer something for everyone to enjoy, while tying it all together with a wholesome story and message. And then there is that scene that is reminiscent of “When She Loved Me” from Toy Story 2 that is guaranteed to make you a little misty eyed. Visually, the film features crisp and colourful animation that maintains the more angular drawings of a comic book, paying tribute to the film’s source material. It’s not as beautiful as the animation we have been getting from Pixar and Disney in the past couple of years, but the animation does help create an exciting visual feast for the eyes.

To help set the mood of the film, there is a great soundtrack of popular music that captures the emotion of each scene. Steve Jablonsky’s musical score is decent, though it's the moments where he borrows from the Superman Theme by John Williams and the Batman Theme by Danny Elfman that will get DC fans excited with these throwbacks to these characters’ first big screen adventure. Speaking of nods to other DC projects, the film is full of small Easter eggs around Metropolis that reference other DC characters and locations that appear in the comic books. Plus, like any other superhero film, there are two credit scenes that tease the film’s sequel and the arrival of Black Adam in the larger DCEU.

Much like its past couple of films, DC League of Super-Pets is sure to be another home run for DC that is certain to delight audiences of all ages. I personally would love to see a sequel to this film now that our heroes have been established, which will allow for a larger action packed sequel that can pull in more characters from the larger DC universe. Featuring a stellar voice cast, laugh out loud moments, and tons of heart that will give you that warm and fuzzy feeling, DC League of Super-Pets is destined to be one of the best animated films of the year and the beginning of a new series of films for DC.

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