Here’s Me Trying REALLY Hard Not to Shit on “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”

Let’s be real here. The realism for this movie is set up within the first 10 minutes of the movie. The first car Bruce Wayne gets into in this movie is a Jeep Renegade. We all know that Bruce Wayne wouldn’t be caught dead driving one of those horrendous cars in real life.

Prepare for a semi-disorganized review of Zack Snyder’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” Don’t worry though, it’ll be MUCH more organized that the movie was. Also, know that I very much WANTED to like this movie. I really did. I had hope for “Man of Steel,” and I had hope for this movie. I casted out the glaringly low 36% on Rotten Tomatoes this film had by the time I got to see it. I really held my outspoken DC Comics fanatic friends’ opinions on pre-screenings of the movie with a lot of merit. Knowing that I’m more of a Marvel person myself, I didn’t want to allow my bias for Marvel to color this movie going experience.

With that said, while I DO have some positives to say about this movie – they are few and far between. If you want the short version. Sure, see it in theaters for the novelty of seeing it – but don’t pay more money than you have to. A standard, no frills screening of this movie will do. No amount of the third dimension or IMAX screens would be able to help this movie. Know that you probably won’t come out of this movie feeling somewhere in between. You’ll either love it or you’ll hate it – at least that’s what the hundreds, if not thousands of tweets I’ve read about the movie is making it seem. Also, know that no amount of bad reviews of movies will make this a box-office flop. The built-in fan base is just too large for that to happen. Okay, onto my actual thoughts on the movie.

Outright, I can’t say I enjoyed it. However, I will say that this movie made me very excited for future DC Comics cinematic efforts. While it was blatant, I would argue that setting up future movies is one thing this movie did better than previous Marvel movies. Maybe it’s because Zack Snyder is adamantly against including a post-credit scene, but the set up for future movies in THIS movie is well-integrated, and gets fans of other DC characters pumped for the future of this cinematic universe. That might me the single redeeming factor of this movie as a whole.

In its parts, there are also a lot of good things about this movie. The performances in this movie are all pretty solid. The way I felt about Henry Cavill’s portrayal of Superman in “Man of Steel” holds true to this movie. He has a distinct connection to his world as well as our’s that Brandon Routh simply didn’t. However, he’s still a little TOO stoic for my tastes – even during scenes that are supposed to be emotional. It’s almost like he doesn’t even try. Then, there’s Ben Affleck. I wasn’t on the hate train when he was first announced to be our new Bruce Wayne, because I’m just a fan of Ben Affleck’s other work. As far as I’m concerned, with the material he was given – Affleck gives the best performance he could have. (Side note, he is freaking MASSIVE in this movie. He definitely put as much physical effort into this role as he did emotional, holy hell.)

While I did think their relationship developed much too quickly in “Man of Steel,” something about Amy Adams’ Lois Lane is just very endearing to me. I’m a fan. That’s that. The real love-him-or-hate-him performance in this movie really seems to be Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor. I’m in the school of thought that unless you were a huge “Zombieland” fan or have seen his more independent work, you might not be as big  a fan of his as other people are. I fall into both mentioned camps, and I firmly believe the Lex Luthor that was given to us through Eisenberg was whole-heartedly intentional. It came off that way, and as far as extremely mentally unstable rich kids with daddy issues go – I thought Eisenberg did a good job. Aside from the fact of who his character is, the way Eisenberg portrays him – you’re just waiting for the moment that he’ll finally TRULY lose it throughout your time watching the movie. That to me, is a job well done.

Oh, also. I should mention that  SO FAR, Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman is awesome. But she’s in like 0.0000000001% of the movie. Which I feel is an injustice, if you’re going to include Wonder Woman at all. They basically used to as a convenient pocket knife.

So far, everything I’ve said skews pretty positive – right? So, what made this movie so bad? Well, it was at LEAST 45 minutes too long. I had to truly fight to keep myself awake during this movie. Luckily, the set-up for future movies brought me back in a little bit. But quite honestly, this movie is a hot damn mess. The pacing was just flat-out dreadful.  The flow from scene-to-scene in terms of the story, did not flow well at all. It was almost like they didn’t know how to connect the pieces of the puzzle they created and just threw their arms up in the air and said, “With enough glue…any pieces will stick together! IT WORKS!” It didn’t. I cannot express to you how painful going from one scene to another was. That, in addition to the previously mentioned length – was just a recipe for an outright bore. That’s all there is, it was boring. Even through the scenes that were supposed to be exciting, you’re just waiting for it to end. That’s not who I want to feel at any movie, but especially a comic book movie.

Even more than that, while I am a die-hard Marvel fan, I don’t know that people who truly connect to the heart of what these DC characters are supposed to be or represent can say this movie did them justice. I was going to say, “It’s almost like they took these beloved characters, and what they stood for and represent – and went against those things to the most extreme degree.” Now that I’m thinking about it, it’s not what they “almost” did.  That’s just what they did. This movie is just a vengeful mess, cloaked as a comic book movie. While I appreciate the effort to try and be original about a comic book movie, I just don’t think it works at the expense of the characters’ core.

Over 1,100 words later about this movie. All I really have to emphasize still….is that “The LEGO Batman Movie” might actually be the “Dark Knight” franchise follow-up we’ve been waiting for.

 

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