The rise of the DC cinematic universe has been long awaited. What movie would they bring out in 2016 to be their version of the Avengers? Batman v Superman finally came, but… it was pretty shit.
This Review is Really Spoilery
Zack Snyder has been a bit of a directing enigma as of late. You don’t really know if he’s going to give you something great like Watchmen, or if he’s going to turn in Suckerpunch. Batman v Superman seems to relate closer to the latter. Now if you’re a fan of how Snyder shoots action scenes, good news! Like Watchmen, the action is shot very well, and in that Snyder style that teeters just beyond reality, but close enough to it that it feels like the scenes carry weight. Getting to watch Batman and Superman in action is pretty damn cool in this film. What is not cool is the rest of the Snyder tropes mixed in. The film tries to be a very gritty imagining of the DC universe, but in the process misses a lot of the fundamentals of DC storytelling. Remember how Batman doesn’t kill people and never uses guns? In Batman v Superman he uses a lot of guns and kills a dickload of people. There is also a lot of ham-fisted and very needless philosophical nonsense strewn throughout. A lot of this stems from the dialogue, which is generally so bad it’s laughable. Most characters speak in exposition, but a lot of dialogue is just fluff trying to sound intelligent and philosophical for the sake of it. The dialogue has no meaning, no weight. Watching the monologues of Lex Luthor or the brooding of Superman, you don’t believe anything they say because it’s just so ridiculous sounding.
Lex Luthor With Hair?
Did someone say Lex Luthor? Holy shit, he killed the movie. Jesse Eisenberg is generally a great actor, and what follows is mostly not his fault. Whoever wrote the Lex Luthor for this movie did a horrendous job. The ultimate Superman villain is portrayed as an annoying brat, who is odd and speaks in metaphors and philosophy as a poor attempt to give his character any depth. About 60% of Lex’s lines are completely redundant and unneeded. This portrayal of Lex is so directionless and meandering that it just ruins every scene he’s in. Shit, Lex didn’t really need to be in this movie at all, please don’t put him in sequels.
Remember When Superman Killed All Those People?
If you watched the Batman v Superman trailer, then you already know the plot of the movie. Batman and Superman don’t like each other. Batman and Superman fight. Batman and Superman set aside their differences to defeat a common enemy. Wonder Woman is also there. The movie is so God damn fucking predictable. There is absolutely no surprise in anything that happens in the film, which just makes it feel boring. The plot itself, as described above, is lazy at best. Prior to the introduction of Doomsday (we’ll get to him in a minute) the plot follows old Godzilla plot. Very slow, dragged out build for about 1.5 hours to the 20 minutes of action that you actually care about. This is fine for Godzilla, but in a movie that has such an array of potential action, it’s very disappointing. Doomsday is the real villain of the movie and holy fuck it’s awful. The Doomsday portrayed in the film looks ugly and cheap, and looks very fake. The writing of Doomsday is almost non-existent and still retcons the shit out of any form of source material. SPOILERS: Lex Luthor makes Doomsday via kryptonian Deus ex Machina, and Zod’s body. What the fuck?
Remember when Ben Affleck was Daredevil?
Let’ talk about some characters, shall we? The casting and portrayal of DC’s characters both make and break the movie. Ben Affleck is a great Bruce Wayne, and despite how poorly Batman is written, he really rocks it. Jeremy Irons is no Michael Caine, but he is the next best thing for Alfred. Amy Adams turns in a great performance as Lois Lane, and Laurence Fishburne is always a joy to see. We already discussed how Lex Luthor ruins the movie, and Gal Gadot is pretty meh as Wonder Woman.
Should You Care?
At the end of it, Batman v Superman is not very good. If you like action, and seeing Batman and Superman throw down, then go see it. As a whole, it feels like the movie is trying so hard to be a bastion of emotion and thought provocation that it falls flat on its stupid face. So the DC cinematic universe begins with a very expensive whimper. What did you think? Let us know in the comments!