This weekend I went and saw Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. I know, it’s late in the game; I will be honest, the reviews I read were not promising so, given that I wasn’t very excited from the trailers to begin with, I wanted to wait…. I was also extremely broke for awhile and that didn’t help either. All that being said, and to point out the obvious, I am reviewing Warner Brothers 2016 film, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, directed by Zack Snyder, starring Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Jesse Eisenberg and Gal Gadot.
This is a spoiler warning: I am not going to hold anything back so if you still intend to see the movie then I’ll see ya next week.
This is also a warning that I am going to be pretty positive about the film.
I want to start by saying I enjoyed this movie. I thought it was a solid superhero flick, and did justice (no pun intended) to the characters they were using. I’d go so far as to say that it is the best live-action DC movie to come out since The Dark Knight in 2008. I really don’t understand the rampant hate that the internet had for this movie. It honestly was better than Ant Man or Thor: Darkworld, yet everyone keeps talking about Batman V Superman like it’s the worst movie in history. I simply do not get it.
The movie certainly wasn’t flawless. The first being I really didn’t care for was Jesse Eisenberg’s portrayal of Lex Luthor. In my opinion the Luthor in BvS is too manic and crazy. I much prefer the calm, cool, and collected Lex who runs a Fortune 500 company as well as tries to take over the world and stop Superman. Jesse Eisenberg could easily have pulled this off. If you don’t believe me, just go watch American Ultra… he kicks complete ass in that movie. This Lex comes off more as a Riddler, which as a Riddler it would be amazing, but for Lex it’s more Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka than anything else.
I also had an issue with Doomsday basically looking like a cave troll from Lord of the Rings and how close Metropolis and Gotham are geographically in that world. It’s like they are Minneapolis and St. Paul where in the comics I feel they are more Los Angeles or New York and Detroit or Chicago. The reason this bugs me is twofold. 1) Why would Gotham need a Batman if Superman is right there? He could easily fly over and stop the Joker from blowing anything up or any other crimes that Batman fights. 2) How did Clark Kent as a reporter, not know about Batman before now? In dialogue between Bruce and Alfred they mention he has been fighting crime for 20 years, meaning that someone who wants to be a top reporter didn’t know about a vigilante brutally fighting crime… across the bay… when that reporter is also a vigilante. It’s little but it’s the little things that bug the crap out of me.
The final thing that bothered me was how the movie was edited together. It just throws things at you constantly and it can be pretty disorientating. It took me a few seconds at the beginning of the movie to catch that it was a dream sequence and honestly it just never stopped. There was no slowing down, and for a 3-hour ride that is not ideal. It was almost too much too fast and I can see people not being able to follow it easily.
Now I know this review has been all negatives, but these faults are actually, to my eyes, fairly small. None of this break the movie for me. I really enjoyed the vast majority of the film. Some of my favorite things were how they covered Batman’s origins over the opening credits instead of giving it time during the movie. I also really enjoyed how they set up the Justice League as being other Metahumans that Lex is researching. I thought it was smart and gives people a crash course on these new characters. Wonder Woman, completing the trinity vs. Doomsday, was also just amazing, not to mention the Flash “dream sequence” which was totally not a dream!!
My favorite thing though, the thing that really made me enjoy this movie, was Batfleck. I loved his portrayal of Batman and am glad to see a darker Batman. I think this is the right Batman for the universe they are trying to set up. It took a little getting used to but once you realize that he’s a crime fighter and not the world’s best detective it made his portrayal that much better. I love that this Batman is the kind that won’t straight up murder you but he won’t save you either. This is a Batman who literally, if stabbed, will remove the knife and proceed to stab you with it. It was also awesome seeing an older Batman who has had a Robin or two and is cautious with his team.
This movie was not perfect but it is a far cry from the steaming pile that most reviewers would have you believe. It gets a very solid 7.5 out of 10 and I am finally excited for more DCU films.