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Batman V Superman review (with spoilers)


It is fair to say that I went into Batman V Superman with very high expectations. This HAD to be DC's big movie. Their grand slam. The film that launched their connected movie universe. I had heard the bad reviews, but of course I still went in with an open mind. I was hoping....praying....that this movie would be incredible. I came away overall very disappointed.

There were some great moments, to be sure. The opening sequence with Bruce saving people during Zod and Supes' fight was great. Every time that Superman saved someone was great, especially the little girl in the flaming building. It tapped into the protector in me....how I wish I had Superman's powers so that I could help those who cannot help themselves. The fight between Supes and Bats, and the subsequent fight with Doomsday, were great too. The biggest problem I had with the film was this: The overall terrible characterization of Batman and Superman.

Let's start with Superman. In Man of Steel, we found a hero unsure of who he wanted to be. But, in the end, he was confident: He had made his choice to be Superman. In this movie, we are once again treated to 2.5 hours of Superman being a wuss. Superman is supposed to inspire us - to be the ideal to strive to. He never got there in this film. I kept waiting for Clark to give a big speech about who he was and how he was trying to make a difference, but it never happened. I really thought the hearing would give that moment, but the bombing eliminated that chance. His lack of surety and confidence about what he was here to do/who he wanted to be was a huge turnoff to the character. And if I have to see one more scene where and he and Lois just pause to look lovingly into each other's eyes.....please, enough is enough.

Batfleck was actually pretty good. The fight scenes were great, and the overall portrayal was good. The whole time that he and Alfred were talking, though, I kept having this feeling that we've been here before (the Nolan series). I tried to not compare, but it was really tough. Here is the biggest problem I had with Batman - the biggest problem I had with the whole movie - WHY IS BATMAN KILLING PEOPLE? I'm not talking about the dream sequences. I'm talking about the scene where he uses a car of bad guys as a club to hit another car of bad guys. I'm talking about the scene where Batman uses a Gatling gun to mow down a car full of bad guys and the car subsequently explodes. I know Batman killed in the Nolan series (Ra's, and then that one random bad guy in Rises), but this was ridiculous. It honestly ruined the movie for me. No lie.

My favorite two characters turned out to be Wonder Woman and Lex. Diana just rocked in the final battle. The grin she gave Doomsday during the fight may have been the best part of the movie. And Lex turned out to be a pleasant surprise for me. Purists will hate his portrayal, but I loved the frenetic, unstable genius approach. He threw so many philosophical, theological and existential points at the audience so quickly, though, that I think some of the message got lost. I would love to read the full text of his character's lines and just analyze them. He was such a great mastermind, too. He really orchestrated everything that happened, and was the true villain of the film. I thought Lex was great in every scene he was in.

There were other things that bothered me. Like, how could Clark hear his girlfriend scream for him and not his mom? That one really upset me. The dream sequences seemed like such a waste of time. They could prove to be something more than just dreams, though - perhaps future films will address this. But the biggest thing I didn't like we're the portrayals of Bats and Supes. It just turned me off to the whole film. And, I do have to agree with those who said the trailers gave away too much. All the biggest lines and moments really were shown in the trailers. Seeing them in the movie made them less powerful because of this. Though, I did really like the surprise moment where Clark and Bruce realize that their mothers have the same first name. I've been reading comics for several decades, and I'm not sure I ever realized this.

I think I will go see it again. Give it one more chance. But I just came away very disappointed. I really wanted this movie to be great. It turned out being okay at best.

Comments

  • 10 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • I only read your first and last paragraph to avoid spoilers, but it sounds like the Onion got it pretty right with this article?

  • Dang. I sincerely had high hopes for this, too. I was also hoping it was at least enjoyable despite being mocked critically (as was "Green Lantern," which everyone hates but I enjoyed).

    Will probably still see it, but will be able to go in with substantially lower expectations.
  • I liked Green Lantern too!

    Well if nothing else, at least we got the Bat Blood song out of this ...
  • Supes does something to a terrorist early in the movie. I keep thinking about it, and I keep getting more and more mad about it. I won't say what it is, but it pisses me off.

    C
  • So I read the summary on Wikipedia and Superman dies at the end?  And then sort of wakes up as the credits start to roll?  I'm...just at a loss.  The Wikipedia summary is practically damning--I have to agree with what you guys were saying.  It's like they took eight different major story arcs and sandwiched them all into a single movie.  
  • Very positive reviews from most of the superhero fans on some of the other forums I frequent.  Feels like a very odd juxtaposition when you look at reviews as a whole.  Rotten Tomatoes is actual down a few points from the other day.  Weird sort of tone when people are talking about it.  
  • Okay, so I finally saw BvS. I opted to watch the ultimate, 3 hour version and...I have to say...

    ...and I know I'll get ridiculed for this...


    ...I liked it.


    ...actually, I really liked it.


    The thing is - it's a solid 7/10 for me.  It has too many stories and some jumps in logic that don't quite make sense, but, overall - I thought it was a lot of fun.  It FELT like a comicbook story to me.  In fact, had this been a comic story...I think it would have been fairly well-received in book format.  

    I'm not saying it's perfect.  It isn't.  But, did I feel like I enjoyed my self and was entertained for 3 hours?  Yes.  Is it "My" Superman or "My" Batman. Hell no!  But as a story about two fictional  characters that battle it out? It really worked for me.  And I enjoyed the melodrama of it - the reasons for Superman and Batman fighting made sense to me.  And, both Batman and Superman aren't portrayed as true to their comicboook counterparts...but, given the stakes of the story and the world set up in "Man of Steel"...it didn't bother me that much.  Yes, both Batman and Superman kill. And, yes, Batman using guns is stupid (But, in all fairness, he had guns on the batmobile in the Keaton/Burton films and did plenty of killing in those too). But as sort of an "Elsewords" story, it worked for me.  

    And I LOVED Lex Luthor. Here he was a master manipulator and I thought his character was pulled off best of all.  Wonder Woman was fantastic too, but wasn't really in it that much.

    Perhaps because I went into viewing it months after the buildup and crushing reviews and hearing everyone's complaints, I went int not expecting much and was pleasantly surprised.  I'll put it this way - I'd watch it again. And, more than Suicide Squad...it actually made me excited for what is to come.
  • This is the spoilers thread, so what did they add with the third hour?
  • I watched it. They added a better explanation of how Luthor set up Clark. Basically he blackmailed a lady in the village in the desert to say that Superman killed those terrorist guys. They also had a scene where Steppenwolf (one of Darkseid's guys) appeared in Zod's ship and was conversing with Luthor through three Mother Boxes. This made Lex's crazed speech in the jail cell make sense more. There was a little more action, and a few extra scenes. Nothing too noteworthy, but some of the scenes definitely made what they left in make more sense.

    C
  • I was going to try and make a lame 1970's rock joke and went to google and honestly more than 50% of the images that pop up are of the DC villain...so apparently he's way more popular than the band.   :D
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