Director: Sam Liu
Cast: Miguel Ferrer, Christina Ricci, Stuart Allan (VOICES)
Release Date: April 18, 2017
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 8/10
Disc Rating: 8/10
Led by Starfire, the Teen Titans – Beast Boy, Raven, Blue Beetle, Robin and the just-returned Nightwing – have built a cohesive team in their never-ending battle against evil; but their newest teammate, the mysterious and powerful Terra, may be altering that dynamic. Meanwhile, an ancient evil, Brother Blood, has awakened, and familiar foe Deathstroke is lurking in the shadows –both waiting to pounce. Ultimately, the Teen Titans will need to battle their enemies and their own doubts to unite and overcome the malicious forces around them in this twisting tale of intrigue, adventure and deception.
The latest entry in the ever expanding lineup of animated DC Universe Original Movies brings to life ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ which inspired by the graphic novel of the same name brings viewers back for a closer look at the Teen Titans. Now led by Starfire, the Teen Titans have begun to truly build a name for themselves in the hero business, with the team currently including the likes of Beast Boy, Blue Beetle, Raven, Robin and the recently returned Nightwing on their roster; along with the latest member Terra whose impressive power and tendency to keep to herself make for a somewhat awkward working relationship for the remainder of the team. Once the evil and ancient Brother Blood arises and enlists the help of longtime foe Deathstroke to assist in his plan, these teenage heroes soon find themselves facing one of their toughest challenges yet, filled with danger, twists and no shortage of dangerous foes to confront.
The first animated DC Universe film to focus entirely on the Teen Titans, ‘The Judas Contract’ is an action packed, joke filled ride that provides DC fans plenty of impressive action sequences and peril, combined with a lighter, humorous tone always present that fits with the focus on our Teen heroes quite perfectly. With the addition of two noteworthy DC baddies thrown into the mix (Brother Blood & Deathstroke) and heaps of tense fun, ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ certainly isn’t the most impressive recent installment in the ongoing lineup of animated DC Universe Original Movies, yet that isn’t to say it isn’t wildly enjoyable from start to finish, which it certainly is. The somewhat lighter tone of ‘The Judas Contract’ also allows for a refreshing change of pace following the previous two R-Rated and notably darker installments ‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ & ‘Justice League Dark’ and it’s definitely one truly fun ride that shouldn’t disappoint. Fellow DC Comics fanatics who haven’t already done so will definitely want to be certain to give ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ a watch when they have the chance. It’s nonstop fun with plenty of action and laughs that any fan of the DC Universe animated movies won’t want to miss out on.
Overall, ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ delivers a constantly entertaining ride that takes viewers deeper into the world of the Teen Titans and offers plenty of grin inducing action sequences, along with a fitting addition of goofy fun that works great with these teenage heroes. It may not be the most outstanding entry as of late in the ongoing DC Universe Original Movie lineup, but it certainly doesn’t disappoint either, offering a refreshing change of pace from the previous couple of entries which were a great deal darker and also allowing fans a chance to get to know these teenage superheroes a bit more intimately; the group undeniably deserved their own film in the universe after all. Fellow fans of the DC animated movies definitely shouldn’t be deterred by the humor or somewhat lighter nature of this one and they can rest assured that the action is easily still on par. ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ is definitely worth your time and should prove well worth the cost of a rental at the very least for any DC fans that might be hesitant to drop the cash on a blind purchase of the Blu-ray release.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty solid as a whole and delivers the usual sharp, detailed and brightly colored presentation fans have come to expect from the DC animated titles. It holds up admirably even during the many darkly lit and/or fast paced sequences and never results in anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a pretty fantastic high definition video presentation that should once again have no trouble pleasing the fellow DC fans.
The Blu-ray release features a lossless 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This lossless multichannel soundtrack is yet again one of the most impressive aspects of the release, providing a crisp, clean and notably aggressive audio presentation throughout. It frequently takes full advantage of all five available channels in order to send a plethora of action elements and plenty more whipping throughout the various speakers with regularity, and never causing any dialogue that might be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible in the process. Overall, this is a wonderful and hard hitting 5.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtrack that contributes even more fun to the overall viewing experience.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Teen Titans: The Judas Contract’ includes some solid extras for the fans. Included on the release is ‘A Sneak Peak at DC Universe’s Next Animated Movie: Batman and Harley Quinn’ (running approximately 9 minutes in length), in addition to a couple of behind the scenes Featurettes that include an inside look at bringing the film to life and feature interviews/comments with the creative team, plus more; they are: ‘Titanic Minds: Reuniting Wolfman & Perez’ (running approximately 28 minutes), and ‘Villain Rising: Deathstroke’ (9 minutes). We are also treated to ‘2 Bonus Cartoons’, both of which this time around are naturally “Teen Titans” episodes: ‘Terra’ (22 minutes), and ‘Titan Rising’ (22 minutes). Two old Featurettes included on previous DC Animated Movie releases: ‘A Sneak Peak at Superman/Batman: Public Enemies’ (8 minutes), and ‘A Sneak Peak at Justice League: Flashpoint Paradox’ (11 minutes) are also included.