While Justice League may be an epic in the sense of its story and large ensemble, in terms of how long the actual movie is, it’s not exactly Lawrence of Arabia. Manabyte and subsequently theater chains AMC and Regal have confirmed the Justice League runtime as 121 minutes, which puts it at just one minute over the two-hour mark. This isn’t actually a bad thing—God knows plenty of superhero movies these days overstay their welcome so they can barrage the senses with visual effects. But it is curious given that Joss Whedon oversaw what most contend were significant reshoots this summer, which no doubt reshaped the movie at least somewhat from what Zack Snyder originally shot.
But in contrast to the rest of the DCEU, Justice League is going to be downright short. The runtimes of the previous films are as follows:
Man of Steel – 143 minutes
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – 151 minutes
Suicide Squad – 123 minutes
Wonder Woman – 141 minutes
As Roger Ebert once said, no good film is too long and no bad film is short enough. Indeed, in my own memory Suicide Squad was an endless slog while I could have enjoyed more of Man of Steel. It’s worth noting that Warner Bros. Home Entertainment released “extended editions” of both Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad that were longer than the theatrical releases, but only the BvS extended edition was an actual director’s cut (and, unsurprisingly, the extended edition of BvS is better than the theatrical cut).
It’ll be interesting to see if Warner Bros. does the same with an “extended edition” of Justice League or if that might be a bit too difficult to assemble given that Whedon’s name isn’t on the film and Snyder is no longer involved in the making of the movie. Indeed, just about everything is interesting about Justice League at this point, and luckily we’re now not too far off from its November 17th release date.