Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice: A Perfect Example of More Creating Less
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is an ambitious failure. It juggles way too many subplots while never focusing on what people wanted to see (Batman vs. Superman). I knew a battle between Batman and Superman wouldn’t work, but, I never expected it be an afterthought. Director Zack Snyder loaded BvS with so many “ideas” and themes that he completely lost his characters in the self-serious muck. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is not about Superman and Batman, it is about Zack Snyder and DC piling too much on their plates.
I was going to give a full rundown of the convoluted plot, but it would’ve been a never-ending sequence of “and then” statements. So, in order to save time here is the abbreviated plot breakdown. BvS focuses on Batman being annoyed at Superman, “and then” they have to deal with lex Luthor and an Orc from The Lord of the Rings. During the 150-minute run time we get a lot of shallow/generalized statements, angry politicians and Ben Affleck showing off his pull-up skills. There are no three-dimensional characters because Snyder boils them down to “ideas” to further his self-serious agenda.
Aside from crushing some pull-ups Ben Affleck’s Batman is only allowed to look angry and glower a lot. He is a cranky guy who has a short memory, and comes across as self-righteous because of his anger at Superman. Superman (Henry Cavill) is an afterthought, and that hurt my soul, because Cavill has never been given a chance to do anything other than look glum. My favorite scenes were the little moments between Superman and Lois Lane (Amy Adams). Amy Adams and Henry Cavill have solid chemistry and their three laid-back minutes together are the heart of the film.
Cavill and Adams are really good together
I don’t want to spoil anything because there are a decent amount of “surprises”. There is a lot going on in BvS and Snyder deserves credit for setting up about eight sequels with limited time. I am excited for The Justice League movie because I like the cast (Ezra Miller, Jason Momoa) and thought Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman was the best part about BvS. Gadot seemed to be having fun, and the crowd in the theater came alive when she entered the final battle (for a couple reasons). Her performance is a breath of fresh air because she is allowed to smile and have some fun while battling a massive CGI blob.
BvS has already collected$468 million at the worldwide box office which is incredibly impressive considering it bombed with critics. If anything, this film will be remembered for the debate between critics and audiences. BvS has proven itself to be critic-proof, but I wonder how the terrible word-of-mouth will affect future DC films.
Zack Snyder tried to do something different with BvS, but his “big ideas” got swallowed up in a film that had too much going on. Thus, every aspect of BvS became generalized and two-dimensional. I’m hoping he allows The Justice League to be about the beloved characters and not himself.