dc league of super-pets
starring: dwayne johnson, kevin hart, keanu reeves, and kate mckinnon
REVIEWER: nick tonkin
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.
DC League of Super-Pets is an animated superhero comedy from Warner Bros exploring the antics of a group of animals who become empowered with superpowers and work with Krypto the Superdog to rescue Superheroes captured by Lex Luthor and his pet, Lulu, an evil hairless guinea pig.
Super-Pets is led by big names in Dwayne Johnson as Krypto and Kevin Hart as Ace (later Bat-Hound) and they are backed up by an absolutely stacked roster in supporting roles. Kate McKinnon is excellent as the antagonist of the film, the evil guinea pig Lulu, and John Krasinski and Olivia Wilde are great as Clark Kent and Lois Lane.
The list just gets more out there with Deigo Luna playing a squirrel with Electrokinesis (essentially Force Lightning here). Thomas Middleditch and Ben Schwartz are guinea pigs with powers of water and fire respectively. Keanu Reeves plays The Batman and Keith David makes an appearance as a projection of Dog-El, Krypto’s father. There are still so many more names unmentioned above and a big part of the fun of the film for adults is placing a name to the voice of the powered guinea pig or the turtle with bad eyesight and super speed, for instance.
Super-Pets does attempt to cater to both kids and adults, succeeding in some ways and falling into the usual traps of weaker animated kids films in others. Toilet humour and an odd joke about a pig and bacon are the low points of the film, though the story allows its characters to broach more substantive topics of friendship, boundaries and responsibility through their journey to rescue the captive Superheros.
Super-Pets will have the kids entertained with the antics of the superpowered pets and adults will find appreciation in the film’s snappy dialogue and eclectic song choices - The Pharcyde and A Tribe Called Quest feature alongside Queen and Taylor Swift, amongst many more.
DC League of Super-Pets animation has a pleasing style, apparently informed by the work of an Art Deco illustrator and other Superman works from the Silver Age of Comic Books period. The animation was provided by the Australian studio Animal Logic, and I wonder if this Aussie connection was a factor in the decision to recast two of the guinea pig roles to Australian actors for the film’s release in the country.
DC League of Super-Pets has an abundance of amazing talent overflowing from its cast list, fun superhero antics and great song choices combined with a charming animation style, all wrapped up to ensure a fine time for adults and kids alike.