Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts

Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts (2015, 77 minutes)

Plot: Batman must team up with The Flash and Green Arrow to stop the Penguin and his Animilitia from destroying Gotham City.

Source Material: The source here is a toyline. Yeah that’ll be a big theme of these. This draws designs from the Mattel line. It also teams Batman with two heroes who both have hit tv shows. I’m sure that’s deliberate. Perhaps one of the weirdest characters it draws from the comics is Red Robin, who is apparently Tim Drake but whose costume has its origins in Kingdom Come. Weird.

Animation: We are a long way from the quality of the adult movies I fear, even the cheap ones. This is very flat flash animation. The character designs are bland and unexpressive. There’s virtually no detail at all. The action is OK but it’s very TV in the worst way. This is not a good looking film in any way.

Script: Heath Corson is a veteran of WB Animation and he certainly seems to try here. The problem is it’s obvious he was ordered to make a toy commercial which means we get new characters, new designs, and new gadgets at every possible moment to sell these toys. There is no plot beyond a standard story hammered together out of tropes with bland messages. It’s hammered into us that we shouldn’t bully and people have good in them. None of these will be revelatory even to kids.

Voice Acting: This isn’t half bad. The cast consists of all voice acting veterans and they do solid work. It’s definitely TV level but it’s fine. They’re trying, definitely. Roger Craig Smith in particular makes a rather good Batman.

Final Verdict: At 77 minutes, this actually runs a few minutes longer than the standard adult DTV CBM. Why? It’s agonizingly overlong as an adult. Kids will surely find it just the same. There’s enough here I’d imagine they might enjoy it if they’re fans but past 12, this is unlikely to do much. 2/5

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