Surprisingly when you mislead your audience people don’t like it!
I managed to watch the Batman vs Superman movie TWICE! YES TWICE! And lets just say the reviews aren’t too kind. Personally I don’t think it was THE worst movie ever (from an expectation standpoint that would be the Hobbit:Battle of Five Armies) but it does a really bad job of doing what it promises to do.
In the build up to this movie we had batman vs superman plastered all over youtube and Facebook (the profile picture editor they used to show support for Paris now gets used to show support for either Batman or Superman) so for some odd reason a lot of people had the idea that they were going to see this epic clash of titans -the movie to end all debates! Who is cooler? Which fandom gets to say “IN YOUR FACE!!!”….Sadly we got none of that. we got a two and a half hour long movie with about 10 minutes of actual batman vs superman “fighting”. In my mind that could totally be acceptable IF the rest of the movie was spent showing us them pitting themselves against each other ideologically. It did a semi-decent job instead of setting up the justice league and for the average movie goer not familiar to the lore it was a massive let down. You’d see bits thrown in that made no sense, things like wanye manor being destroyed, batman being an (even more) cynical dude,superman looking like he’s about to cry everytime he does something(although that still baffles me).
This was a movie made for the hardcore fans and not for someone looking for a Joss Whendon funtime with you favourite superheroes. There is no joy in this movie whatsoever. Batman is sullen throughout due to his 20 (unseen) years on the job. He hates what he does and things it’s pointless trying to go after small criminals. He hasn’t been able to get rid of crime in Gotham and he views this act as his final defining act. Clearly selfish! He even states that his family were hunters as justification for what he’s about to do. How is that justification for anything? Just because your family used to hunt you should too? It’s an inane excuse that I’d fine difficult to believe Batman would actually believe.
Although they don’t hint at what happened at wayne manor I would imagine what you’re watching is something that falls somewhere along the timeline of ” Dark Knight Returns” but with the Sons of Batman either missing or never formed. They do appear in the Knightmare sequence so either he’s thinking of doing that or it has been done. The Knightmare sequence is excellently described in this excellent piece but serves to illustrate the point that this movie is for people that have engaged in batman beyond(see what I did there) the blockbuster movies. And for that I’m really impressed. The marvel titles are the benchmark and they allow someone to walk in with zero knowledge and walk out feeling satisfied. The hints and stuff exist for hardcore fans but they’re just there to make you excited not serve as driving plot points for the movie itself.
On that note the Knightmare sequence does look amazing and I would love to have seen more of it or heck an entire movie going into THAT timeline. It reminded me of Injustice: God’s Among Us and really if they had taken elements of that and made a movie I can guarantee the audience would’ve loved it. Superman having actual justification for fighting Batman and vice versa and they could’ve ended with a dead Superman/Batman but allow it to continue due to the multiverse.
Additionally the fight itself was not what you’d really expect. Batman seems to just go a brute force method with pointless traps that served no purpose. If Batman wanted to kill superman he could have shot the Kryptonite canister at him( Superman would have caught it as he does the first one) and shot him full of bullets. Keep the spear close and then stab him! Boom my plan is better than Batman’s! Admittedly there is the possibility we give Batman too much credit but for a master tactician his tactics weren’t that great. If superman punched him to the top of the building batman wouldn’t be able to drop him from the top so that seems more like luck than planning.
The editing of the movie was absolutely horrendous and whoever did it should be fired. The cuts were jarring and the narrative flow was completely absent down to the last scene. They show the casket being laid, Bruce and Diana talk, Batman confronts Lex and then back to the casket! My only hope is that the Directors cut actually makes more sense.
I found the score kinda weird at times as well which is a bit disappointing when Hans Zimmer is involved. Wonder woman theme sounded like the spy kids theme to me during the final battle and superman’s death music sounds like the Lion King when Mufasa dies XD
Wonder woman was probably the best thing the movie had going for it. Her fight scenes were epic but even then I found her motivation for being in the story really odd. She wanted a photo on a hardrive because??? She wanted to print it out and frame it? It didn’t really add up why she was there, or where she was going(or were we suppose to only notice the Turkish Airlines)?
Jesse Eisenbergs performance was actually enjoyable the first time around as I kinda saw him as Mark Zuckerberg as Lex Luthor but after seeing how “insane” he acts at the end I realised when I watched it the second time that he was trying far to hard to do what heath ledger did for the dark knight. Infact the whole movie (and Man of Steel) trys to hard to be the serious movies that Nolan produced with the Dark Knight trilogy. I do hope that they have some fun with the Wonder woman and Aquaman movie and if they do decide to do a Cyborg and Flash movie they tone down the seriousness (especially considering they’re both teenagers)
All in all it gets a 5/10 from me. It had good bits (Jeremy Irons is brilliant as Alfred) but a lot of it felt to disconnected. You needed some background info and while that’s nice for the hardcore fans for your average movie goer and those that just want to see cool superheroes it was too heavy handed.