Welcome back to my Zack Snyder review series! This is the fourth and final review of the series (the others were for 300, Watchmen, and Man of Steel). After I post this article, I’m going to do a final analysis on the director to sum it all up. The review will be after the jump and feel free to guess my score!
Now I know you’re listening. Why would I give Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice that high of a rating out of all of Snyder’s movies? I’m going to ask you a similar question: Why is the Rotten Tomatoes score at a 29% rotten score? Most of the critics are complaining that the movie is too dark, long, and confusing. While I’m not saying that I loved Batman v Superman, I am saying that it was a solid entry in the realm of all DC movies (not just the DCEU).
Like Watchmen, Batman v Superman had a fantastic opening credits scene that just blew me away. It was the Wayne death scene that we see in all the other Batman movies, but this one was just better than the rest. Though I don’t think any other scene in the movie is as emotionally powerful as that one, every scene actually served a purpose. I will concede that the movie’s editing is bad and that some of transitions are terrible, but at least every scene served a purpose. Some of the scenes were used to increase the tensions between Batman and Superman and others were used to set up the DC Cinematic Universe.
The plot of the movie is pretty complex. People don’t like Henry Cavill’s Superman after what happened in Man of Steel. Ben Affleck’s Bruce Wayne is one of those people. After two years, another event happens in which Superman is accused of destroying a building in Africa. Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor convinces the government to give him kryptonite, the body of General Zod, and the Zod’s crashed spaceship. Holly Hunter’s Senator Finch puts Superman in court so that he could answer for his crimes. Luthor blows up everyone in the court and everyone else believes that Superman did it. Bruce Wayne decides to take him down by stealing kryptonite from Luthor. Though Jeremy Irons’ Alfred doesn’t like it, Batman makes an armored suit and fights Superman after some dream sequences happen. The two then team up to destroy Doomsday, a recreated General Zod. Oh yeah, Wonder Woman shows up.
It’s a pleasure to see Batman and Superman fight on the big screen. In addition, Wonder Woman’s seven minutes of screen time was at least well utilized. Lois Lane actually did a ton of important work and played an integral part in the film. Finally, Ben Affleck’s portrayal of Batman just blew the other versions out of the water. He’s phenomenal in this film and part of that has to do with the way Zack Snyder told him to do certain things. The audience feels both sympathy and concern for this guy – he’s haunted by the past (his parents’ death and the destruction of Wayne Tower, which killed many of his co-workers) and by the future (his fear of the godlike Superman doing whatever he wants). Hans Zimmer’s score adds some tonal range to the film – it appears dark, but Zimmer’s score makes it grand and epic. Also, at least BvS actually had memorable moments – Man of Steel didn’t really have that.
Critics are complaining that BvS is too dark and that it’s drained of lightheartedness and hope. However, this ISN’T MARVEL!!! DC = Different Company. This universe was supposed to be dark from the start (we saw that in Man of Steel and The Dark Knight trilogy, which influenced the DCEU). While I agree to an extent that BvS lacked hope (Hans Zimmer’s score added some hope in there), I think that people should accept the DCEU for what it is – a universe filled with the most iconic heroes in a world that needs to be saved. This movie does a pretty good job by showing that the world needs to be saved.
My two biggest problems in this movie consisted of the editing and Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor. I’m not saying that Eisenberg did a bad job (his take was… unique) with his crazy lines. I just didn’t get his plan. That might have to do with the editing of this movie because I heard that Snyder took out a few scenes with Eisenberg, but his plan didn’t make sense. How did he know when, where, and how everything in the movie was happening? This problem hurt the story’s cohesiveness, but who cares? Batman and Superman fight on the big screen and it’s awesome!
Also, the dream sequences are just really confusing. Though the Knightmare Batman dream sequence looks awesome, it has a bunch of Darkseid references that general audiences wouldn’t understand. Just because it contains a reference to a popular comic book character doesn’t mean it makes sense. Batman literally kills a dozen people and a ton of Parademons fly in the sky (Parademons are the minions of Darkseid, the main enemy of the upcoming Justice League movie). I like the aspect of Superman taking off Batman’s mask and then proceeding to kill Bruce because that furthers the animosity of Batman towards Superman. However, the other stuff is just confusing. When a friend of mine asked me what this all meant, I said that the scene was supposed to symbolize Batman’s fear of Superman and that the flying things in the background were aliens just like Superman.
Also, when Batman wakes up, why was the Flash there? What was the purpose of that Flashpoint Paradox (when the Flash goes back in time to change a possible future)? I know it’s to set up the future Justice League movie, but I’m sure that Snyder knew that this scene was obviously unnecessary.
One more important flaw – I was promised a full on war and I didn’t really get one on that lasted very long. When the two heroes brawled on the big screen, I was floored with the way Snyder shot the scenes. Every surrounding is utilized and the action is very intense. However, it only lasts for what seems to be ten minutes. If the movie is called Batman v Superman, I want to see first and foremost Batman versus Superman.
Now for a positive: The acting is great overall. Like I said before, Affleck’s portrayal of Batman was the highlight of this film. Henry Cavill is fine as Superman in this movie. He definitely personifies a god-like being on Earth and he really feels pain whenever people call him a terrible person because he wants to save people. Gal Gadot was great during her few minutes as Wonder Woman. I can’t really say if she was good as Diana Prince because there isn’t much screen time of her for that. Amy Adams is great again as Lois Lane – she’s once again the person who’s trying to find the perfect conspiracy story.
Overall, the film is okay, if not great (it’s definitely better than Man of Steel). It has nice action and it isn’t boring. However, it’s really dark – a ton of people die. The awesome and memorable moments in the movie make up for the boring stuff and the visuals are phenomenal.
So what do you think about Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice? Feel free to let us know in the comments section! Thanks!
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Categories: Movie/TV Reviews