Title: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Cast: Henry Cavill, Ben Affleck, Jesse Eisenberg, Lawrence Fishburne, Amy Adams, Gal Gadot, Jeremy Irons.
Director: Zack Snyder
Runtime: 2h 31m
There is no other way to say it. Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice sucks. And it sucks big time.
Zack Snyder took two of the best superheroes in DC history and made them take each other’s personalities with horrible results. Batman is supposed to be the world’s greatest detective; every decision of his is based on cold, hard logic. Here, he takes decisions because of a dream he has. Superman is a God on earth; he believes in humanity which is why he doesn’t take over earth. In BvS, he is so disconnected from earth that he keeps running away to be alone.
Lex Luthor is a joke. Apparently, these days, you have to work a Silicon Valley geek into every superhero movie to prove your nerd credentials. The Avengers have Iron Man who makes geeks cool. Lex Luthor shows you what happens when the resident high school nerd is still unable to get over the trauma of getting stuffed in a gym locker by jocks. Great premise, except that Luthor’s character has absolutely no reason to behave the way he does. He has no back story, no one knows why he is a giant douchebag. He just is.
The fact that worked for Avengers is the banter and chemistry between the team members. In BvS, there is zero chemistry between the main characters. They talk in short sentences. Sometimes, they reminded me of Optimus Prime from Transformers. The only moment where there is a spark is when Batman and Superman talk about Wonder Woman. The movie needs a lot more of those dialogues.
Every Avengers movie has a scene where Captain America and Iron Man take on each other. Sometimes, The Avengers even fight between themselves. Example: Captain America and Thor, Iron Man and Hulk. But there is a strong reason behind the fight. Here, we are not sure why Batman and Superman fight. They just do. It’s stupid.
The problem is the fights aren’t great either. A superhero movie can get by with a wafer-thin plot and huge gaps in logic if the fight scenes keep us hooked. Here, we constantly get the feeling that we are being played.
The conflict in the movie is not defined. Why are Batman and Superman at each other’s throats? Surely, the Bat can see through Luthor’s plans to pit him against the alien from Krypton. Snyder says he has tried to pay homage to Frank Miller’s 1986 classic comic The Dark Knight Returns. The only thing that works is the Batsuit. The conflict in Miller’s series was simple. Batman has to come out of retirement because Superman has become the government’s lackey. Two of the world’s greatest heroes, nay greatest men, went up against each other because their ideas of justice didn’t match. Here, they fight because they are too stupid to see through Luthor’s schemes.
The movie is a 2.5 hour trailer for Justice League. Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Cyborg (Ray Fisher) and Flash (Ezra Miller) are introduced in this but the introductions feel oh-so-forced. Henry Cavill doesn’t do himself any favours with his brooding personality. Ben Affleck is surprisingly good as the old Bat. Amy Adams has a couple of good scenes, especially her “Oh F***” moment as she has to go back to get a weapon she threw away. Lawerence Fishburne is wasted as Perry White. Jesse Eisenberg tries to do a psychotic Mark Zuckerbeg as Lex Luthor but falls flat on his face. He comes off like a psychotic Micheal Cera, and we all know that a psychotic Michael Cera is no good.
Jeremy Irons as Alfred and Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman are very good. Irons changes the way we look at Alfred and Gadot should be a good watch in the superhero genre.
The final disappointment came when all the fans waited for a end-scene after the credits roll. Just like Marvel has. To no one’s surprise, that didn’t happen.