In light of all the hate surrounding Batman v Superman: The Dawn of Justice. I just wanted to make some things clear:-
Alright, this may be a bit long, but absolutely necessary I assure you. I am an avid comic book fan. I love reading them, when I first saw Ben Affleck’s first look from BVS, I didn’t lose my marbles over how Christian Bale was better etc.
He may be better, or not, that is not the question. But, Affleck looks better, especially in the role of Frank Miller’s Batman from The Dark Knight Returns, shades of which are abundant in BVS. The story is based in a reality where, Batman is aging, world weary and darker in general. Most people have objections regarding this. It’s idiotic. Ben Affleck’s Batman, is a representation that sticks to the source material, in a way that only few movies have managed (read: Deadpool) Understanding the distinction between the normal Bats and the Batman of BVS is key to comprehending the movie. All those critics complaining about the stagnant nature of superhero movies, this IS a respite, but most people are just too blind to see it.
Two things have been cropping up in all the reviews of BVS, it could have been funnier/entertaining and, the lack of the “versus” in BVS.
Firstly, this is not a giggly romcom. It doesn’t need to be funny, to be entertaining. I don’t think there were many jokes in say, Shutter Island, but, it was entertaining. The fault lies with audience as a whole, we have created a bias where every superhero movie should be like Avengers. Typical leave your brain at home affair. Now Avengers might have been a great movie, but after the entire seeing Phase Two, I cannot help, but hope for a slightly intellectual alternative. Complex characterization, a plot that truly tests the resolve of these characters in a explosive mix, spiced up with delicious CGI, that is what the DCU is giving us. Now all those bickering about the excessively philosophical elements of BVS need to understand one thing, DC has always heralded stories that are different in nature, Sandman, Batman:Arkham Asylum etc. The problem here is the view that comics are nothing more that a light entertainment media. DC has not accounted for the imagination of the audiences, or a lack thereof.
Secondly the “versus” issue, let me get this straight, people wanted Zach Snyder to establish Bats, set up Wonder Woman and the Justice League, without it seeming like a massive setup, ( read:Avengers 2) create a conflict and resolve it all within 2 hours or so. Well, I think Snyder and team did a great job. The problem is again, lack of familiarity with comics, BVS can never be a mano-y-mano, winner takes all deathmatch. The conflict has always been that of ideologies. I can rant for hours covering minute details of their respective ideologies ( believe me, I have.) But at the end of the day, the only way to have these two titans in a conflict is have one party unwilling to fight. It was the same in BVS, and in TDKR, also in the beginnings of Injustice, I think.
That being said, BVS has many delights for one familiar with the source material. The amazing setup for JL, the powerhouse performance by Jesse Eisenberg, in complete contrast of the cold, detached Luthor of the comics, being some of them. Among these is the apparent ability of Bats to forget his “no gun” rule. I think that this, put together with a small dream sequence, after which a certain JL member drops by, is one of the major Easter Eggs. For those who have seen the movie and remember the dialogue please google Injustice: Gods among us, the comic by DC. That may or may not be the direction in which DCU is heading, if they are, boy we are in for a treat.
Again I’m in no way saying BVS is a flawless work of art, but does it deserve to be ranked with the likes of Catwoman and Green Lantern on CinemaScore?