Batman v. Superman Dawn of Justice, opened March 25th, 2016 with early showings March 24th. I saw this on the official opening date with a group of comic-geek loving friends. Since the movie was announced, people have been talking about it left and right. Criticism of actors chosen, to storylines, to villains. I was one of those people. I thought this movie would be terrible, and when the reviews started coming out, it seemed as if I was right, at least for my personal taste.
One aspect I did not like was the entire premise of the film with its title being Batman v Superman. They could have gone many different ways but chose to play off the VS. aspect to draw in the crowd. Batman v. Superman! Fight of the century! Etc., etc. Not my cup of tea. Most of the beginning of the film was slower than I would have liked. It took too long for Superman and Batman to come face to face. Yes it helped us see Bruce/Batman’s paranoia something that the character is known for, and see him do some detective work, however there were issues with that, for me. Others loved him but I did not. I had grievances.
My main grievance? Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne/Batman. As you can see in this photo, Ben is dressed the part, however I did not once forget he was Ben, and not Bruce. For me a successful portrayal of a character, especially a well known character like Bruce Wayne/Batman, the actor has to make you forget who he is, and believe he is who he or she is playing. Affleck did not do as such. For me, he, and the slow start was the worst moments of the film. Plenty of people are now praising Affleck, while criticizing the script, and the portrayal of Superman.
Henry Cavil plays Superman very well, and convincingly so. I see Superman / Clark, not Henry. However Zack Snyder made some crucial mistakes not only in this film, but in Man of Steel which furthers into this one. Snyder seems to destroy the Jonathan and Martha Kent as we know them, and turns them into selfish people. Martha telling Clark that “he doesn’t owe them (society) anything.” And in Man of Steel having Jonathan express that he never wanted Clark to be Superman. That is not who Jonathan and Martha were. In the film we see Clark struggle with how society is viewing him, both as a god, and as an unwelcomed alien that people want to see controlled and punished. While we saw his moral code destroyed in Man of Steel when he killed Zod, it is of no surprise that he is struggling with right and wrong, and what he should or should not do for mankind. A situation not helped by that of Jesse Eisenberg, who plays Lex Luthor.
Lex Luthor comes across as maniacal, and psychotic. Which yes one could argue Lex was crazy, however not in the way Eisenberg portrays him. Lex was smart, he managed to continue his evil plans and be a thorn in Superman’s side in many incarnations of Lex Luthor. Not seemingly be Superman’s Joker. Which is what he seemed like to me. One thing that I caught was the fact he mentioned his father’s name was on the building, not his. The building is LexCorp. Lex Luther’s father was not named Lex, but Lionel Luther and in another storyline Jules. So this makes me wonder if this is not the Lex we are familiar with (there may be a comic version of this I am not aware of), but perhaps a Jr. We will have to wait and see. Just like we will wait and see Wonder Woman which I think Gal Gadot pulled off wonderfully.
Gal Gadot seemed to steal the screen from the boys whenever she was on. There are many doubts going around the interwebs on the Wonder Woman movie, however I am looking forward to it.
The boys have had all the fun for too long.
Does this film have issues? Yes. Could this have been better with someone more familiar with the characters directing other than Snyder? Yes. Could it have been better with someone else as Bruce/Batman? For me, yes, very much so. Should you still go see the film? See how it plays out? Yes. Aside from the issues I think it has, I still enjoyed it for moments here and there. If you are a fan of DC, go see it and give it a shot. Some of you will be disappointed, and some of you will not. You can’t please everyone, so they are focusing on who they can please. The general population, over the comic/character fans. It is what it is.
Side note: Did you catch Jimmy? How about Robin? Damn Snyder.