Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Is Underwhelmingly Entertaining
This weekend we enjoyed some lovely spring weather, the Easter holiday, and Batman v Superman!
You guys know how I feel about superhero movies — So. My. Jam.
But, before we talk all of the things here, let me back it up a bit.
Personally, when it comes to super heroes, I am so Team Marvel over Team DC. The Marvel heroes and their stories are more compelling to me. And they have Chris Hemsworth (Thor). He could be a bad guy and I’d still totally root for him and his man bun.
That being said, Superman has always been one of my faves.
He’s just a decent dude, who loves his family — and his lady — and wants to make a difference in the world. And Henry Cavill. He’s no Chris, but girrrrrl.
Anyway, all of that sexy aside, this film was a long-anticipated flick from the DC Universe meant to be a foundation piece for the franchise. With more independent hero films and the Justice League (DC’s answer to the Avengers if there even is one) coming down the pipeline in the next few years, those of us who truly enjoy the genre were anxious to see Batman and Superman go at it a little bit.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
I’m going to call it a healthy start.
But let me discuss a few of the…um…issues. (For lack of a better word.)
Starting, of course, with the elephant in the room: Ben Affleck.
He’s been known to destroy a movie or two in his lifetime (*cough* Gigli *cough*) and casting him as the Dark Knight, following a decent showing from Christian Bale, was a stretch that — in my opinion — they weren’t quite able to pull off.
I found Affleck to be decent as Batman. I mean, playing the Masked Crusader doesn’t require huge acting chops, thanks to the whole mask situation. But, when it came to Master Wayne I found him entirely lacking the charisma and general likability that Bruce has been known to inspire.
I know. He spent the entire movie in turmoil and the only lady he could even pretend to make googly eyes at wasn’t having it (it was Wonder Woman you guys, she ain’t got time for vigilantes going through an emotional crisis), but I still felt that the character development of Affleck as the bat was just…absent.
This burden was not placed on Cavill as Superman. Having played him in the previous iteration of the Superman story, we already know what he’s about (*cough* hot abs *cough* probably something else but his abs are all we really care about *cough*). He didn’t need to convince us that he’s so ridiculously likable as Clark Kent, or that there are few things on this planet (or any other) that he loves more than Lois and Martha (his mama in case you didn’t know, a factoid that turns out to be quite significant in the film).
He simply got out there and did his thing against the bad guys, like he’s known to do.
But that wasn’t the only element I found the film struggling with. There was the Lex Luther situation, for example. They made him more of the “psychotically bratty type” than the “maniacally intelligent and sinister conniving type” I remember him from other versions of the story. In fact, I wanted him to die more in this film than I ever had in the past, just because he was SO annoying.
And then there was the entire bigness of the story. It went on and on developing the opposition between the two while interweaving so many additional story elements that it was hard to keep up. In fact, it was all so exhausting that I actually had to take a short nap at one point to like regenerate myself.
What? Superman needs the sun and I need a nap, we all have our things.
Anyway, I don’t think my seven minutes of shut eye really caused me to miss much, which is a clear sign that they were busy beating a dead horse in their explanation of why Batman hates Superman for basically all of the reasons. Or really, from what I could tell, no real reason at all.
It was just long. Way too long.
Finally, I had a teeny bit of beef with the action element. It was just all so much. Everything getting blown to smithereens by nukes and all manner of crazy to the point that recovering seemed exhausting and hardly worth it, and come funeral time (and yes, there is one) it’s hard to believe that anyone is still around and breathing to work the freaking shovel. Yet, there they are. Along with what appears to be a largely healed world despite what looked like a full on apocalypse happening just days prior.
On the bright side I loved meeting Wonder Woman (a story I wish would’ve been told feature-film-length prior to this one), I think the film set up the potential for a number of great spin-offs, I’m excited to know how their Flash will turn out, it was refreshing to see a female love interest that wasn’t all whiny about being near death multiple times (it’s just part and parcel of superhero girlfriend life), and all in all it was entertaining.
And, let’s face it, I was really just there to be entertained. And swoon over super abs and biceps and stuff.