BatmanSuperman Review – BATMAN V SUPERMAN Is A Disappointing Dawn For The DC Universe written by Sean Gerber March 24, 2016 I really wanted to love Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. I’m a lifelong Batman and DC Comics fan who already knows what it feels like to be let down by a Batman movie and it’s a feeling I hoped to never experience again. On a more practical note, as the host of the Batman News podcast, I’d much rather go into the upcoming review episode with nothing but joy and enthusiasm to share with my fellow Batfans. Unfortunately, I just can’t because I have a different, but ultimately familiar feeling that I had 19 years ago (note: this is not saying BvS is as bad as that other movie.) I did not love Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. I didn’t even like it. I enjoyed parts of it and I promise to get to those in this review, but they were not enough to overcome the movie’s many faults. Some of my reaction is unavoidably based on my own pre-established perceptions of the characters and how they can best be handled, but it can’t all be written off as an unfulfilled fanboy wish list. This movie, independent of its title characters and the expectations that come with them, is still fatally flawed. As you know, Batman v Superman picks up not long after the world met Superman (Henry Cavill) in 2013’s Man of Steel. The world is unsure of Superman, but leaning heavily against him and that includes Bruce Wayne, a.k.a. Batman (Ben Affleck.) The disdain Batman has for Superman is reciprocated and this leads to an inevitable confrontation between the so-called heroes. Right from the beginning, the fact that there’s a much longer cut of this movie on the way shows with a highlight reel of scenes held together by Scotch tape and trying but failing to establish a narrative structure. Once again, we are treated to the worst day of Bruce Wayne’s life, only this time director Zack Snyder wants you to know Thomas Wayne (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) was a tough guy who wouldn’t go down without a fight. Consequently, Thomas Wayne is now the man who turned what might have only been a robbery into a double homicide that took him and his wife, Martha (Lauren Cohan), away from their son. But at least he’s a badass now. Bruce Wayne’s memories blend in with recurring nightmares, fueled by his past trauma and current paranoia regarding Superman after pulling bodies out of the rubble during Superman’s battle with General Zod (Michael Shannon) in the previous film. To his credit, Affleck delivers an excellent performance and proves to be the right actor to play this character going forward. It’s just a shame he was asked to do so many non-Batman things in this film. Snyder does not have a comfortable relationship with heroes. I’ll get to Superman, but Snyder’s take on Batman, outside of the best live-action version of the costume ever made, holds so few of the character’s enduring traits throughout 77 years of continuous publication. Snyder’s Batman is so paranoid, deranged, and sadistic that even Frank Miller’s Batman (Snyder’s obvious favorite) looks normal by comparison. This is not just a jaded man who’s lost his way. This Batman is a murderer. Batman’s always had a murky relationship with his no killing rule in movies, but Snyder goes overboard. The first time we see this Batman kill, he’s not even trying to save anyone. He’s fighting people who are committing a crime, but that’s not what he cares about. Batman isn’t trying to bring them to justice. He’s killing them so that he can steal a weapon they have, which he wants to use to kill Superman. Yes, Batman is committing capital murder so that he can commit another capital murder. In one of his nightmares, Batman goes full tilt with guns blazing and necks snapping, but that’s not what terrifies him enough to wake up. He only does that when his own safety is compromised in the dream. This Batman is no hero and he has no rules. He really has become no different than the monster who took his parents and Snyder doesn’t even bother to present this as a potential problem. Superman does not fare much better. The world is rejecting him, probably because he spends more time saving Lois Lane (a criminally misused Amy Adams) than anyone else and when he does save random innocents, his facial expression reveals just how much of a burden such tasks are for him. He floats above four families huddled on the rooftops of their flooded houses instead of rushing right into action because, I can only guess, Snyder really thought the shot looked cool. Superman has no answer for his critics, other than telling Lois that he doesn’t care what people are saying even when he’s clearly taken action that’s caused people to die. As long as his girlfriend is okay, that justifies everything else to this selfish Superman. Then people say other things and he cares again, but flies away and only returns to, you guessed it, save Lois (again.) We never get Superman’s take on why he does what he does and why it’s still worth doing even if the world doesn’t trust him. All we get is an answer to the all-important question as to whether or not Superman can have sex with Lois. He can. It’s another hypermasculine achievement unlocked for a film preoccupied with stockpiling them. Lois, in addition to her role in proving Superman’s prowess, is otherwise wasted investigating a lead that reveals something we can plainly see in the movie’s other plotlines. She’s on the sidelines with nothing to do and utterly useless to the plot. As our two unlikable, not very heroic “heroes” continue snuffing out anything that might resemble hope or joy, the unbearable Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) works through his to do list of diabolical deeds. With all the cunning and sophistication of a seventh grader, Luthor puts Batman and Superman on a collision course by passing notes. Seriously. He provides no new information and only reiterates what each man thinks of the other while committing atrocities that tip his hand, yet Batman and Superman still inexplicably blame each other. The big confrontation used to sell this film is dead on arrival. Superman can end it with one sentence, but instead pushes Batman and we’re off and running. With no history between the characters other than what the audience supplies on their own, BvS has a unique challenge in making the conflict intellectually and emotionally credible. It does not meet the challenge, nor does it really try. From beginning to end, the battle between Batman and Superman is so incredibly forced that it is robbed of any true meaning. By the time the heroes get a chance to be heroes and battle Doomsday (who just looks awful), it’s too little too late for Batman and Superman, but a true hero comes into play to almost save the climax. Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) provides a spark and it really is a treat to see in her in action. Poor editing has her going to three different locations and spending a little time on her computer while everything is hitting the fan in Metropolis before finally showing up to help, but Gadot’s sheer force of will overcomes the constraints put upon her character by the edit and the script. Wonder Woman is a rock star, thanks only to Gadot, and her solo movie next year should be nothing short of great. Despite Wonder Woman’s “A” for effort, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice puts too many checks in the minus column to avoid being a major disappointment. It fails its main characters and even if I accept that these are simply different versions of those characters, the movie still fails to tell a good enough story to make me really care about them. Batman and Superman are superheroes, after all, and no movie should spend most of its time suggesting they’re the opposite. For all his talk about the mythological nature of Batman and Superman, Zack Snyder inexplicably asks the audience not to look up to them in aspiration, but to enjoy watching as he rips them down and drags them through the mud until they emerge unrecognizable. Snyder sees the world as messy and hopeless and wrongfully asserts that our heroes should be no exception. Review – BATMAN V SUPERMAN Is A Disappointing Dawn For The DC Universe was last modified: March 28th, 2016 by Sean Gerber Related Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice 68 comments 0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest Sean Gerber Sean Gerber is the founder and editor-in-chief of Modern Myth Media. When he's not writing here, you can catch him as the host of Popular Opinion Podcast, Batman News, and Marvel News! previous post New WONDER WOMAN Image Brings In The Themyscirans next post OPEN FORUM: BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE You may also like Legendary Pictures Posts New MAN OF STEEL... April 5, 2012 13-Minute ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Featurette July 8, 2012 TBD – The State Of Superman On... September 8, 2015 ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Trailer #3 May 1, 2012 Bale (Still) Retired as Batman July 1, 2013 ‘Man of Steel’ Trailer #2 December 11, 2012 ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Earns Dual Covers... May 24, 2012 New ‘Man of Steel’ Banner! March 29, 2012 Ben Affleck will not direct ‘The Batman’ January 30, 2017 New ‘Man of Steel’ Image January 4, 2013 Impiii If Mr. Sean ” I always see the positiv in things” Gerber didn’t enjoy it, i honestly won’t even bother to see it Oreole Instead watch the Worlds Finiest cartoon by Bruce Timm and Alan Burnett. Much more worth your time. Joshua Nathan Strong Go see it for yourself and form your own opinion. While Sean didn’t like it, you might love it. mrhenry24 No one is telling anyone not to see it. This is getting so tired. If we want to let everyone have their own opinions then stop yelling at everyone to ignore the critics. You keep spewing this everywhere. Perhaps you should take your own advice and go form your own opinion and stop letting everyone else’s bother you. After all, this constant “form your own opinion” diatribe is just a passive aggressive way of discrediting critical opinion. Joshua Nathan Strong I’m not bothered that are there people that don’t like movie. If you feel that way that’s cool. I put zero stock in reviews good or bad, I want to see it for myself unbiased and form my own opinion. I will never let a review keep me away from the theater. I see that’s happening here. mrhenry24 That’s why the critics are there. That’s why they’ve always been there. Going to the movies, for many, many people is simply a choice of how to spend their entertainment dollar. Those of us who are passionate about this stuff, to the point where we’ll waste away on the internet logging in and discussing it are in the extreme, extreme minority and we’ll all see the movies no matter what, but the critics are there for the average Joe who is on the fence about how to spend his money. If those who use the critics as a tool use your “ignore the critics” model and feel as though they wasted their time and money after seeing something they didn’t like, they’re going to think they should have listened to the critics. That’s also what word of mouth is. It’s what these movies need for legs, for longevity. If people like it, they will tell other people and suggest they go see it. It also doesn’t mean that those who choose not to go to the theater will never see the film. They may very well choose to wait until they can see it at home. It’s all about the risk they wish to take on how they spend their entertainment dollars. It’s just absurd to run around telling other people how to run their lives, which is exactly what you’re doing. There’s absolutely no problem with someone reading a review and then using that to determine when or if they see something. If you don’t want to do that, that’s your choice and it’s cool, but no one is sitting here telling you not to see it because the critics said it was bad. Oreole Welp, I was right. It is a stinker… Sean, to cheer you up. I recommend you re-watch the Bruce Timm Worlds Finiest cartoon . That’s from people who know how to tell a story with these characters being at conflict with each other. Kerry Vanderberg As someone who loved the film, it pains me to read this. My sensibilities usually line up with yours, Sean. But I had the complete opposite reaction to almost everything you list here. I’m not going to bother going through them (partially because you’re the better debater than me, and I simply want to enjoy the movie that I saw and enjoy seeing it again tonight). I’m much more aligned with Mark’s review of the movie, so I hope that the two of you will do a review and discussion in the POP podcast, and also with Andy in the Batman-news podcast. I’m hoping right now that Andy enjoys it. Scott Rogers In the old days of the MMM Podcast, we had to hear John Bierly multiple times talk about how he “hated” THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (but somehow loved most of its content) only because it didn’t give him a good “feeling.” I wonder how John feels now. Instead of hating TDKR irrationally because Chris Nolan deviated from the script in John’s mind and because it didn’t match THE DARK KNIGHT (arguably the best comic book adaptation ever), maybe he should realize how lucky we were to have at worst a flawed-but-good Nolan Batman movie, especially now that we see how an ungrounded moviemaker (not “filmmaker” on purpose) and overgrown kid can mess up Batman with a quarter-billion-dollar budget. Hey berto In defense of John, I tend to agree with him. The sum of some well thought out parts don’t make a stellar whole. It was a logical conclusion, but the emotion missed me entirely. Ii walked out of the theater feeling pretty disappointed. I wasn’t expecting another TDK there, but I thought the film was too ambitious for its own good. Repeat viewings have been kinder to it, but you’re right… I think it’s awfully flawed. I just feel like I got exactly what John was saying, and had no problem with it. Joshua Nathan Strong I think Rises is better than the TDK in every way. Two totally different films and genres of films. Hey berto Not the first time I’ve heard that argument, and I certainly agree it’s a fair one. Scott Rogers My overall point is about proportionality. I don’t mind John being disappointed with TDKR for his own reasons, but to “hate” it with the weak case that John made is not justified. On one of those old podcasts, both John and Brad seemed to agree that the movie was flawed and was disappointing relative to the first two of the trilogy. However, Brad articulated his view with the proper, balanced perspective, essentially saying that he thought TDKR as a whole was less than the sum of its parts and the worst of the 3 movies but in no way an absolute failure. “Hate” should be reserved for truly the worst, such as BATMAN & ROBIN and maybe BvS once the emotional smoke clears. What I’m suggesting above is that perhaps John now sees a true candidate for “hate” in BvS and regrets throwing the term “hate” around loosely when it comes to the far-superior TDKR. Hey berto Gotcha. I guess the part I identified with was something I felt like i identified with… I just didn’t like it overall on first viewing. I just thought John was clear on where he was coming from on that point, and it’s not as if we’re critics that have to articulate why. Please don’t interpret what I’m saying as trying to argue. I’m not saying your stance on this is wrong.. Just adding my perspective. Hey berto Yeah, if Sean doesn’t like it…. I loved so much about MOS, but before that I thought of Zach Snyder as more style than substance, and I wasn’t a big fan of his work. He was to action in movies what Tim Burton is to psychology of the damaged in movies. Great at a signature style of movie making, not great at storytelling. Looks like he’s back to that, and that really bums me out. Joshua Nathan Strong I think that’s a really cheap criticism of his work Hey berto Truth hurts for some I guess. Joshua Nathan Strong That’s like calling a director a visuals guy/girl. Of course they are, film is a usual medium. The same for style over substance, who can say about any filmmaker. Hey berto Anyone can criticize. It’s what we do here.., come on and talk about what we like about these films and what we don’t. I guess you like Snyder’s work. Cool. I’m not a big fan.,we disagree. Beyond that, I don’t know what your issue is with what I’ve said. Joshua Nathan Strong Saying a director or film is ‘style over substance’ is a lazy and empty criticism. It is personal taste disguised as critique. Style can have substance to it and substance can be stylized. It seems that people use that phrase to describe any bug budget tentpole film. People are using that term to describe Hardcore Henry, while forgetting that the film was designed to be an experience before anything else. Just because a movie/director relies heavily on style, it doesn’t mean that the film/director is bad. And just because a film/director is all about substance, it doesn’t mean that the film/director are good. Tarantino, Edgar Wright, Joss Whedon are directors who’s style is the substance. ‘Style over substance’ has supplanted ‘pretentious’ as the #1 empty film criticism. It’s become a fancy way of saying, “It’s not my cup of tea”. I’m not saying that you can’t criticize something or that you shouldn’t share you opinion, because if that was the was the case then why would I be here? I just think using that phrase is pretty lazy because if you watch any film and study the aesthetic choices that were made you would see that there are tons of thought in everything. Hey berto you seem to have disregarded my feelings on the film because you don’t like the terminology. Whatever. Is it lazy criticism? I don’t know and don’t care. It’s true. It’s not a question of liking or not liking the style. It’s things like the director choosing to focus on recreating shots from the source material over making sure the script was where it needed to be. That’s precisely what style OVER substance means. It’s become Zach Snyder’s signature, and if the terminology is overused, then that sounds like a personal issue for you. For me, it’s absolutely true on BvS, and visuals don’t make up for a lacking script and story. For how great this film looks, for how great the action appears, the story let me down. But it’s ok for me to make that judgement of it, and you can disagree with me. If you feel it delivers, then good for you. I don’t. Again, if the terminology bothers you, sorry but not my problem, nor should I find some trendy way to say the same thing. That criticism describes my feelings on the film best, so I used it. I guess I was too “lazy” to go find new terminology so I could be in the cool crowd. mrhenry24 Painting is a visual medium. Film is a combined medium, it’s about a lot more than just what it looks like. Joshua Nathan Strong A a filmmaker (editor and director) its 85 percent visual. That’s why the longest part of the production process is the actual shoot. mrhenry24 With films like this, post production can take much longer the actual shoot. Hey berto I saw it Saturday Night. I liked it a lot… but it has some big problems, all of which have been covered here. I think the negative reviews tempered my expectations enough that I could just sit back and enjoy it, but if I get into trying to deconstruct the film, it’s all going to come down to the fact that this is not the version of this story that I would have wanted to see. PAUL S I think it’s time to let Snyder go. He clearly does not understand these characters and cannot tell a story properly. A template already exists for the proper interpretation of these characters, it’s the Bruce Timm animated universe. Give him the keys to this franchise so that we can have some hope for DC cinematic universe. I would also suggest that WB now change course and combine the TV universe with the movie one. That would be incredible and might freshen things up. This movie is going to damage the brand so much that it is just depressing. Oreole I really doubt Warner Bros is ever going to merge their cinematic universe with the TV one. They’re way too adamant about them being separate and frankly I don’t see the one of those shows meshing well with this overly serious universe. BongBong Some things even well cut trailers cannot hide and I had a very bad feeling about this one from the start. Thanks for the confirmation. Joshua Nathan Strong To everyone that has not seen the film, Go see it for yourself and form your own opinions about it. Oreole What if you didn’t like the trailers to begin with, or didn’t like Man Of Steel? Joshua Nathan Strong Well this is not another solo Superman film, and if you didn’t like the trailers, the movie couldn’t be more different in my opinion. If you’re able to bring yourself to the cinema, just try to have an unbiased mind Oreole I dunno, sorry I think everything I’ve read and seen odds are that I’ll dislike this movie more than Man Of Steel. I’ll think I’ll hold off on the film and save money and time. Sure you could be your own judge and go to a film you’re skeptical about and come out pleasantly surprised but I’m generally not a fan of Snyder and or his aesthetic and this seems like a continuation of what I dislike of him. Glad you kept an open mind, and enjoyed the film but I can’t bring myself to. Joshua Nathan Strong What don’t you like about his aesthetic? Sean Gerber Ultimately, it’s your money so it is completely up to you as to whether or not you choose to spend it on a ticket to see the movie. I obviously did not like BvS. Opinions are all over the place, however, so I would never tell anyone what they should or should not do with their money to see it. If you were excited about the movie prior to the reviews, meaning you liked the trailers and/or MOS, then you probably shouldn’t let me or anyone else talk you out of at least giving it a chance. If, however, you have not liked the trailers or MOS and what you see in several reviews suggests that whatever concerns dampened your enthusiasm for BvS ultimately come to fruition, then no, you don’t need to spend the money to “see it for yourself.” Going to see a movie is a buying decision and incorporating critic reviews into that buying decision is no different than reading consumer reviews on products, hotels, restaurants, and service providers. If everything you see about a product is enticing, then reviews probably won’t sway you, but when you’re not sure you want something based solely on the advertising, reviews can understandably come into play. Personally and outside of whatever I might need to do in order to provide coverage here, I would not spend money to see a movie that already looked unappealing to me and the majority of reviews were poor. At the same time, I wouldn’t let reviews talk me out of something that I was at least strongly curious about. It’s your call. Don’t let anyone else tell you what to do, one way or the other. Oreole Absolutely. On a another note: Are you nervous about Justice League now that you’ve seen BvS? Because with the money this movie is making right now It’s highly unlikely Warner Bros is going to supplant Snyder with a new director. I think by now they’ll take the ” if it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it” approach from here on out. Furthermore, do you think that Mcweeney report was accurate now? Sean Gerber I’m very nervous about JL. I think it’s time for Snyder to step aside and let someone else have a go, but WB probably will not make that move until JL2. Given the critical response and “B” CinemaScore from general audiences, it’s hard to dispute the HitFix report now. Oreole In a way, Chris Evans is the best Superman yet *wink**wink*. Michael I’ve seen “300”, “Watchmen”, and “Man of Steel”. None of the criticisms in Sean’s review are a surprise to me, because they’re indicative of everything I’ve grown to loathe about a Zack Snyder film. So, to each their own, but I’m gonna sit this one out. Astro Zombie Yikes! I expected a mixed reaction from most critics after Man of Steel, but for both Bill “Jett” Ramey and Sean Gerber to have such reactions knowing how much they were both on board and looking forward to this has me just deflated. stock You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain. All I know, son, is you were put here for a reason. I don’t know whose reason, but I know one thing: it wasn’t to score touchdowns. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Now this, this is something. The skulls. The bodies. I don’t know if it’s art, but I like it. I took Gothams White Knight and I brought him down to our level. It wasn’t hard. Madness, as you know, is like gravity–all it takes is a little push. Me speaking–anybody else getting the idea that a glut of superhero movies might not be so great for superhero movies? Westerns were King once too. It’s like they have to drag these characters through the slime just to keep them relevant? Who wants to see Batman and Superman slimed up for a money grab? GibLesPaul456 I’m still going to see the movie before I ultimately judge it. I just don’t see the wisdom of building a shared mainstream cinematic universe on Earth One and desconstructionist interpretations of these heroes. I still believe that audiences want to see a confident and optimistic Superman who can interact and win over society with inspiring trust and hope. Snyder’s cinema view on society is way too cynical for Superman and I’m not sure if he’ll ever give the the pay off of showing a fully formed Superman who believes with total conviction in his mission and wants to be the symbol of hope. Superman showing warmth, kindness, good humor and empathy to civilians whom he has saved is not corny or irrelevant. People want to see that and do not prefer seeing Supes being sad, stressed out and hopeless. This is not the Watchmen and we’re not dealing with Dr. Manhattan. Jonathan Ashline Brilliantly said! Thank you! Hey berto I thought the Man of Steel approach was fine for a first chapter, but at some point, Superman has to turn toward what you’re talking about. By movie two, that should be evident. I haven’t seen BvS yet, but it sounds like that’s not the case. Dwaaskop I saw the movie yesterday and it was everything I hoped it would be. Great action, great visuals and a badass batman. And underneath it all a tight story with some depth, if you care to see it. No, its not a funny film. But then again, its not supposed to be. At this point my favorite superhero flick of all time. That may change over time and multiple viewings but there it is. Hey berto Glad to see this. I’m hoping for the best. Gareth ” I can only guess, Snyder really thought the shot looked cool” Kinda like in the Avengers when Thor first meets Cap and immediately tries to kill him …….for no reason other than the hammer hitting the shield was a cool trailer moment! Sean Gerber Thor running on adrenaline (or whatever the Asgardian equivalent of adrenaline might be) striking Cap while the former was already in the middle of a fight with Iron Man is much more logical than Superman just hovering above four families in tears as they reach out to him for help. One is an act of aggression in an already aggressive situation, the other is inexplicable inaction. But, for the sake of argument, let’s just say that the completely unrelated example of Thor attacking Cap is related and also a case of a cool shot being chosen over actual sense, another film making a similar mistake would not make what happens in BvS’ any less of its own mistake. Gareth Oh I was agreeing that the superman shot was bizarre and felt out of place(like the aqua man “posing” for the camera shot) They spent the first Thor movie showing how he had matured into a responsible leader and then backed it up in avengers with his lecture to Loki, so I think it is the exact same problem here in that it made no sense in the movie or in the context of that character. Just a money shot !! Just pointing out another example of this happening in a comic book movie. No marvel v DC bs statement intended. Sean Gerber Ah ok. Point taken. Gareth I have to ask but are no longer involved with BOF ? Sean Gerber No, I am not. It was not my call, but I respect the decision that was made. Gareth Ah that’s a shame I’ve listened since the very beginning and miss your input on the show. The batman news one with Andy is great though, thanks for the hours of entertainment and keep up the great work! Sean Gerber Thanks! It’s a bummer to not work with BOF anymore, but I love talking with Andy on Batman News. We have a great time. Justin Got to say that the BOF podcast is lacking because of that decision. SeanLM This confirms my worst fears. It seems like Snyder thinks this is supposed to be Watchmen. Goyer is to blame too. It won’t matter to WB’s bottom line but they won’t be getting my $10. Can fanboys please stop regarding Snyder as some sort of visual auteur? He is a journeyman director and if we were to rank him he’d be much closer to a Brett Ratner than a Chris Nolan. His movies do have a distinctive visual style: ugly and fake. His style is blunt force trauma. Even the “quiet” and “emotional” parts of MoS, I felt I was being clubbed over the head and ordered to “Feel, Goodman you! Feel!” Of course, he’s utterly thin-skinned when it comes to criticism which betrays an underlying insecurity. But this speaks to a larger problem with DC since at least the New 52. They hate Superman, and many of their other characters for that matter, and they have no idea what to do with them. Here’s a suggestion for Supes: let Superman be unironically and un-cynically for young kids. Stop using him as a Christ metaphor (something he absolutely was never intended to be). Stop using him to address the “issues of the day.” It’s not clever; it’s pretentious. Oh, and stop tinkering with his suit and adding unnecessary lines and tubing and flourishes because you thin red trunks are “teh ghey.” stock It is the monumental problem of keeping characters that were created in your great grandfather’s day relevant. Add absolutely no control by the consumer and you have a formula for frustration. I agree that Supes as allegory for Christ is natural, but overblown. He was created by two Jewish kids, and if any allegory was meant, it was probably more in regard to Moses. I have read a lot more reviews like Sean’s than good. Some part of me wants to see it anyway, just to support my love of the characters, but my expectations are amazingly low. Joel Torres I could not disagree with you more on every one of your main points. I have been following the site since the first time you plugged it on Batman on Film many years ago, and this is the first time I wish I could be on the pod just to have a discussion on why we feel so differently about this film. The content is always appreciated, despite our opposing views on this one, keep up the good work Mr. Gerber. Oumar Let me begin by saying that I am a huge fan of this website and of yours. I follow all of your podcasts and enjoy your take on all things. I read your review a few hours before heading out to see the movie in IMAX 3D last night. I was absolutely gutted to read your take. Yours as well as Bill’s over on BOF really shook my confidence in the movie that I was about to go see. I really wanted this movie to do well, and be great. After the movie was done and I walked out of the theater, I couldn’t believe just how much i disagreed with your take on the film. I thought that it was very very good. It had flaws, but I enjoyed the ride from beginning to end. The performances were great, the action and the visuals were top notch. I really cannot wait to hear you go more into detail on your review podcast with Andy. Maybe that will help me better understand why you didn’t enjoy the film. I am looking forward to what else the DCEU has to offer. What Dawn of Justice does so well is open to world to so many possibilities. Going forwards and backwards. I have so many questions about Bruce and how he got to this point. He clearly wasn’t always this brutal. Something in him is truly broken and connecting with Superman as well as the events at the end of the film clearly affected him in a deep way. Where does he go from here? The Knightmare sequence was beautifully shot and must be witnessed in IMAX. Seeing Batman act that way was a shock. But i met it with more curiosity than anything else. I felt the same way about the opening sequence with Thomas Wayne. Why was that change made? Why did they make this choice? I think going forward with this universe we will see and understand these characters much better and that the way we see this movie can and will ultimately change. I am sorry that you didn’t enjoy the movie. I know how much you wanted it to be great. Yours and Andy’s excitement was truly contagious and made the wait and build up to this movie much easier. Pingback: Film Review- Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)- Mixed | Nerdifi() Stephen I have seen the movie twice now. Liked it the first time, LOVED it the second time. I agree with the critics that the editing is all over the map. I didn’t notice it as much the second time though (perhaps they could have used some music between the scenes for a smoother transition). What I attribute this to is the huge task that Terrio and company had. Perhaps too much for one film, but I appreciate the hard work that went into it. Basically they had to (in one movie mind you): The results of Man of Steel, How this effects Superman/The World’s view on him, Where Lois and Superman are at, Introducing a new Lex/Wonder Woman, Introduce Batman while giving us some backstory so we have an idea of who he was and currently is while showing his beef with Superman and while introducing the Justice League. It’s a hefty task indeed. I understand your complaints about Batman Sean, but I see it as I see where he is coming from. He has been at this for a long time and has become jaded. He is clearly a broken and wounded man, externally and within his soul. “20 years in Gotham, how many good guys are left. How many remain that way” and “Criminals are like weeds, you pull one out another appears”. This Batman is so disheartened by his experiences as Batman and where the world or Gotham’s state is currently at. He kind of lost “his way”. Superman appears to be a beacon of light for him. You can see how he responds once he finally teams up with him. How determined he is to right his wrong and save Martha, and his humorous response that he is a “friend” to her son knowing full well what just went down and what his prior intentions were ten minutes prior. This Batman is brutal, it’s one interpretation, but I also didn’t seem him go out of his way to be overly cruel with the exception of his fight with Superman. I also saw him shoot vehicles that happened to have bad people in them but not kill them directly. It’s not all that different from Batman ramming into things like the garbage truck in the Dark Knight for example (which is still easily my favorite Superhero movie and interpretation of Bats). With what he is doing there will be casualties. I saw him murdering people in the knightmare scene, but that was just that. I actually really loved Lex. He was perhaps over the top in his quirkiness, but I saw it as he is socially awkward and his mind is just running a mile a minute, much faster than anyone and no one can catch up. I thought his plans with the senate hearings shocked me at how brutal he can be. And the situation he had put Superman and how he essentially made Superman kneel to him and answer to him was incredible. He was so maniacal and good. I can’t wait to see more of this Superman and Lex. Lex knows so much about Superman (and the other Justice League members) and realizes that Superman will not kill him. So he can manipulate the game if you will. I loved how he ruthlessly pushed Lois off the building assuming Superman would show up, and if not, it’s not like his conscience would be hurting. I thought Gal Gadot was great. I loved the new Alfred. He may have became my favorite Alfred already. I loved how sarcastic he was. Reminded me very much of the animated series Alfred while having this charm (and epic voice) and seeing the big picture that Bruce is too blind to see. Amy Adams and Lawrence Fishburne were solid with they characters were required to do. I love this Perry White. I also really love this Lois Lane and how brave, smart and determined she is as a journalist and compassionate and understanding to Clark. Henry Cavill I think is the perfect person to play Superman. He isn’t happy in this movie, but can you blame him. There is no winning for him. It’s how the world (and audience) react to him. Who wouldn’t be. And yet despite all of this, he still pulls up his socks and does the right thing. I suspect that we will start seeing lighter/happier Superman in future movies as this needed to be a darker film in response to Man of Steel and this Bat vigilante trying to fight/kill him. I loved this movie and appreciate how much hard work must have went into setting up this justice league world, while also establishing new Batman/Lex. A special nod to Han Zimmer/Junkie XL. What a score. I completely love the Beautiful Lie and how beautiful it was to display the pain and heartbreak in Bruce. Thankfully they glossed over his origin but I was in awe of how beautifully crafted it was. It was like watching art. Fantastic movie. I can’t wait to buy the Ultimate Edition to see the complete film which may adjust the editing slightly better. Matthew Dickinson I don’t remember Thomas Wayne getting involved, I thought it was Martha Wayne who stepped in front of him? Would kind of explain this Batman if he models himself on a needlessly reactive father though. There were three interesting plots/themes, the Finch inquiry, Batman gunning for Superman and Lois’ investigations. Each one was derailed, I felt they did set up why Batman and Superman would have beef (the reasons in the trailer) and then subverted it completely with a poorly handled third act revelation from Lex. The two most enjoyable and heroic characters were Lois and Diana, and they were both surplus to the story though. Overall the film reminded me of Iron Man 2, not just in the ‘roll up, roll up for the shared universe’ aspects (which were far more forced in BvS, though mercifully shorter), but in the introduction of interesting issues or characters and then not doing enough with them, in stuffing too much in, in the expanded universe heroine being a highlight and in the grating billionaire villain. Although at least it was Sam Rockwell was meant to be like that and it was clear what they were trying to do with him, Lex was all over the place; I kept expecting him to declare himself ‘the greatest criminal mind of our time’! I might probably give BvS a higher score (IM2 was a 2.5* of 5 for me, BvS might just scrape a 3*), but what beggar’s belief is that no-one at Warners watched IM2 and learnt from it’s mistakes. Murfman64 I hear your criticisms but do you think that, maybe, by the end Bruce has rediscovered his humanity…he didn’t brand Lex when he had the chance, his speech by the grave et al. Is it possible the incarnations of these characters that you love may be coming down the road…when someone is reborn? TheTingler I’m glad that people are liking BvS, but me I felt hugely disappointed in it. I personally enjoyed Man of Steel, and I wasn’t looking for a total comics-accurate depiction of the characters (although I did balk at all the killing Batman does). All I wanted was to be told a story, be convinced by the world and be entertained for the running time. Man of Steel did this. Batman V Superman did not. It is obvious to me that while Zach Snyder cares about comics he doesn’t particularly regard either Superman or Batman well. Regarding both the people who like and those that dislike the movie, I hope we can agree on one thing: BvS was in desperate need of better editing. There is too much in there that was confusing, came out of nowhere, was a straight plothole (how did Lois know about the spear being important?), or most likely utterly superfluous to the story. The “Knightmare” and both Bruce and Diana looking at the metahuman files are fun but should’ve been saved until a mid-credits scene – they do nothing for the story. Additionally so much of the setup is unnecessary – does it really matter that the senator blocks Luthor’s ship, and they have several meetings about it, when he gets it anyway 20 minutes later? The good news is that a fan edit of BvS should be really easy to do and should improve the movie. Hell, I might even give it a go. It boggles my mind that we’re actually getting a longer cut! I want a shorter one! Adrian Edmondson Sean , how many times have you seen it since the initial time ? I am seeing it again for the 3 time today . There is much I didn’t like it was really explained but I think we can agree there is some good in it , just needed to be fleshed out more . Looking forward to the podcast . w0undedmagic I loved it, I’m shocked Sean hated it this much. I loved the gonzo editing and brutal interpretation of these characters. I get that’s not going to be everyone’s taste-but it worked for me. There simply isn’t another comic book film like it. Looking forward to the future of the DCU. Stephanie Siener Turner The movie makes more sense if we consider that Batman and Luthor are both being manipulated somehow by Darkseid, but this is never made clear. I now have high hopes for the Wonder Woman film, but have even less desire to see the Flash now that we have seen a glimpse of him. oliver_chang Loved it, left the theater with a fist pump (in my own head). Lots of emotions, controlled action and detective story. Wife wasn’t too interested in the clips/promos etc, loved it as well, felt it’s wayyy better than most of the formula-driven Marvel films (she liked Guardians and X-men). Theater was packed (I rarely see it here), people stayed for the non post-credit scene. Box office cracked 400m worldwide with a RT score of 29%, SHOULD crack 1 billion. There are some issues, as with every single movie out there. Looking forward to the full blu ray version. Btw I just realized this week my sensibility is pretty much the same as Mark’s, little bit different to Jett’s, and in the opposite direction of Sean’s, sorry. Michael Bradley I wonder if making Batman v Superman as the second movie in the DCU was such a great idea. They had to put soo much into this movie that it lacked any kind of flow. So many times the movie seemed to be picking up steam then it would be stopped dead by a dream sequence or slow motion or both. Lex Luther was my least favorite part of the trailers and he was of the movie as well. The issues I had with Luther were similar to the ones I had with Ultron. The character would have been better off without the silliness. He may become hardened in prison, before he escapes, which would be a good thing. I liked Affleck as Batman, he was a great Bruce Wayne as well. However the way he was manipulated so easily was alarming. Overall id give it 6.5 out of 10.