October 26, 2014
I like the original: nicely done, but a bit bland. There was no real sense of the grime and grit of the Victorian era. Rather, there were empty, immaculately streets, neat docklands, and not a proletarian in sight, all making one think of a giant stage set where the extras were sent home early. Some of the production design was incredible, like the Nautilus, and Hyde (although his CGI has not aged well), the action set pieces were great, and adding in Tom Sawyer and Dorian Grey worked well. But it was all a bit ... empty. It lost the depth of the comic, despite some nods to the comics' richly detailed world like the paintings of previous Leagues on the walls of M's office. This edit's framing the film with an introduction that includes tips of the hat to Maple White Land, Opar and other forgotten fantasy worlds worked nicely; tweaking, cutting, and adding in deleted materials helped the story; and making the film look more like a battered serial from the 1930s, locating it in a lost world of pulps and penny dreadfuls worked surprisingly well in providing a grittier look and a sense of heroic fun and derring-do. A really great job. Thank you editor!