After three years of patiently waiting, the fan community can now experience the Dark Knight and the Big Blue Boy Scout duke it out in glorious fashion. But does Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice accomplish what fans hoped? Is it a good movie? Does the DCEU have solid framework to build upon? Let’s find out!
Before we start, however, just a precaution that this is a spoiler review, and I will be covering topics in this film that are big reveals. You have been warned!
Story: Batman V Superman is, simply put, a movie for fanboys. General audiences and critics won’t be able to understand the story very well. The story had several homages to several popular comic books and the dialogue is filled with comic book easter eggs. However, some, including myself, feel the pacing is strange in the first act. And it’s true. It feels like a political/crime thriller in the first half and slowly builds into a full-blown superhero slug-fest. Don’t get me wrong, the story is amazing, but I think the issue in pacing is solely in the editing. Yet despite pacing issues, the story has tremendous depth, and BvS deserves, from any fan, a second viewing to fully grasp the narrative. 7.5/10
Characters: This movie’s strength is its larger than life personas. Batman/Bruce is a broken warrior, tired of crime and the stench of corruption. This causes him to be unforgiving with criminals. He now breaks arms, fights demi-gods, and takes names. This is the best on screen Batman/Bruce Wayne. The suit is accurate, his charm is straight out of the comics, and his broken spirit is a mirror of Frank Miller’s Dark Knight. True, his methods for justice are…questionable, but before you rant on Batman ‘killing’ remember these two points. Batman is borderline psycho. He is usually on the line of flat out psychotic, so his brutality, especially after learning Lex was going to kill Martha, probably triggered his, his, whatever you want to call it. And this is a heavily Frank Miller inspired Batman, and in the Dark Knight returns, he does ‘kill’. Another note, Batman using guns isn’t against comic book lore. He has used guns very often, and in this interpretation, Bats only used guns twice (ie…Knightmare sequence, and Warehouse fight). Ben Affleck has proven his acting skills once again, and I cannot wait for his cameo in Suicide Squad.
Superman has limited dialogue this time around, but he is the heart of the movie. His pain and compassion shined whenever he was onscreen. This is a slightly more boyscout superman than Man of Steel, and I appreciate the writers acknowledging his character’s depth a little more, making him very relate-able. One complaint many have though, is his death. Even though we’re aware he’ll be in Justice League, many think his death was too soon. I feel it was a good way of reviving his sense of kindness and hop, as he saves humanity by sacrificing himself. His romance with Lois Lane was built on this time around, yet I feel they butchered her character, even though they gave her some very good lines and scenes. She was, simply put, too annoying.
Lex Luthor is all new, smart, and straight-up narcissistic. His character doesn’t have much background, but you can learn a lot about him by paying attention to his dialogue. You can tell Chris Terrio put a lot of time in building this megalomaniac, and it payed off! Despite Luthor being more silver-age, Jesse Eisenberg delivers a very convincing villain. I hope we see more of him in Suicide Squad because his character is very, very well written.
The last character i’ll touch on is Wonder Woman. We see her as Diana Prince for most of the film, with her in costume in the nick of time to safe Batman. Her character is confident, elegant, and canon, I’m very happy they treat her character right and didn’t butcher her to be on par with the ‘boys’. 8.5/10
Action: Zack Snyder knows how to direct action. And Batman V Superman’s action is quite amazing! The fight between the two, granted, is short. But the epic scale of it makes up for it (and remember, the Ultimate Cut has more fight scenes, keep your fingers crossed!) and the emotional ‘Martha’ ending drives the film into the third act. The Knightmare sequence, is beautiful, well choreographed, and gives us a taste of the Injustice-esque world that would have come if Martha died. But what stole the show, was the final fight with Doomsday. Wonder Woman made her entrance, kicked butt, and the trinity shined brighter than that kryptonite gas. 9/10
Soundtrack: The soundtrack to BvS is beautiful, and Hans Zimmer & Junkie XL don’t disappoint. You can catch the full soundtrack review here. 9/10
Verdict: Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice is a fanboy’s dream come to life. The action and visual storytelling is stellar and the characters are done justice. Despite the stories bipolar disorder, most fans will wholeheartedly enjoy the film.