Skip to main content

Movie Review: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) *Spoiler Free*

Go and see this film. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is not deserving of the many negatively focused pre-release reviews it received. The movie will leave you wanting to see more of Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman in this particular incarnation - particularly if you were a fan of Man of Steel, which BvS is a direct continuation of.

Let's start this review by reminding ourselves that this film is a history-making piece of cinema. It's the first time that not just two but three of the (arguably) most well known superhero comic book character icons on the planet have featured in the same live action film.


That's a bigger history moment than the first Avengers movie (arguably) because that was a bunch of B-list superheroes that most of the mainstream have really been getting to know since the first Iron Man movie in 2008

You've already got a taste of Henry Cavill's Superman in Man of Steel so the big question is 'is Ben Affleck's Batman and Gal Godot's Wonder Woman any good?'

I'd say a resounding YES.

Ben Affleck as
Batman.
This version of Batman is, at last, my version of Batman - with perhaps one fairly major caveat that he's particularly lax with his 'no kill, no guns' rule. That aside Ben plays both Bruce Wayne and Batman with an intensity of purpose that not even Christain Bale quite reached (in my opinion).

Jeremy Irons' Alfred is quite possibly my favorite version of the character with his dry wit cynicism and heavy engagement in supporting both Bruce/Batman whilst in the field. He's pretty much mission control for Batman.

Together Bruce/Batman and Alfred make for a compelling team that you'll want to see more of in a solo movie. This Batman you get more of a sense that the detective side of the character is just as important as head kicking, action hero.

Gal Godot.
Gal Godot's Diana Prince/Wonder Woman makes the most of her screen time. Whilst she doesn't get as much as Batman or Superman, her scenes are memorable and a strong, origin free, introduction to the character (thankfully because this movie already has a lot of story packed in). Gal is commanding in the role and will have you looking forward to the Wonder Woman solo movie that is already being filmed.

Beyond that, Cavill's Clarke Kent/Superman is still just as solid as his performance in Man of Steel. We get to see Amy Adams continue to play a the globe trotting Lois Lane, chasing a story like an actual high profile journalist might.

Jesse Eisenberg's Lex Luthor, based on the trailers, has been a concern for many, including myself. It's a very different take on the character but surprisingly I warmed to it as I got deeper and deeper into the film. It's probably not the Lex you were expecting but it is a more interesting take than previous movie versions of the character. I enjoyed Jesse's performance once you get past the way Lex was presented in the trailers.

The performances are what make this film great and worth your time. As far as the plot goes there are definitely problems and, I think, this is the main reason for the negative reviews (though there's a lot of just general dislike of Zack Snyder as a director too).

If you just let the story play out in front of you without analyzing it too closely, you'll get a few WTF moments where the film is trying to set up the currently filming Justice League movie. The rest will kind of come together coherently. You'll be entertained and you'll get to see Batman fight Superman (if that's what you wanted to see).

There are a few plot twists you may not see coming because the trailers gave a very different impression of how some scenes would play out.

Like Man of Steel, this movie is very CGI heavy and obviously so. That's to be expected of a Zack Snyder film. Most of the time the visuals are strong but there does come a point where it seems like you're looking at nothing but wall to wall CGI for quite extended periods without much focus on any of the characters in the scenes. Sometimes I just wish Zack would hold back on the CGI and aim for shooting more with practical effects and particularly with the actors.

Zack Snyder seems to be a divisive director. I'm not fussed either way other than his movies can be a little too CGI heavy. If you genuinely don't like Zack Snyder films then this isn't going to change your mind.

For everyone else, I'd suggest seeing the film for the performances. Most reviews seem to agree that this is the strongest part of the film. As far as the story goes, there's plenty of interesting ideas and set up for the next film to wrap your mind around. Even if the story doesn't come together for you, you'll at least get to see some very cool moments.

Personally I'm hoping the extended DVD cut that has been announced for release in July 2016 will fix some of the story issues of the theatrical cut. Rumor has it, the original cut of the movie was much closer to three hours long, so, hopefully what they put back will fill some of the plot holes.

It's definitely not a perfect film but it's not a complete mess either. Like many comic book films it's best not to analyze every detail and just enjoy the ride.

Comments

Buy Gifts and Apparel featuring art by TET.

Popular posts from this blog

How to Transfer Any Line Art to Your Griptape - Easy Skateboard Griptape Art Tutorial

Dog Star Griptape Art by TET Griptape art is once again gaining popularity amongst modern skateboarders. For those of us who have tried to create our own griptape art, using paint pens, you'll know reproducing your design onto the grip, without making any mistakes is incredibly challenging. Mostly because you just have to go for it and draw the design freehand, with paint pens, directly onto the griptape. You can make the odd mistake here or there but if you get the proportions of the design completely wrong, it can be very difficult to fix. Often you just have to live with the mistake. To address the problem I've come up with an easy way anyone can transfer a line art design to their griptape, removing almost all the anxiety of getting the proportions wrong. In fact, you could do this with any line art design, even if you have no drawing skill at all. Watch the video below to see my technique in action and/or skip past the video where I highlight the basic steps to get your de

Skateboard Trick Tips: Two Ways to Ollie North (Ollie One foot)

You have to be quick to see my Ollie Norths! Ollie One Foots, otherwise known as the Ollie North, is one of those skateboard tricks you learn and then tend not to do very much as more interesting trick challenges grab your attention. However it does look really cool if you learn how to kick your front foot well past the nose of your skateboard. Still shot from Braille Skateboarding's Ollie North tutorial. I was inspired to make my video below, showing two different techniques to achieve a successful Ollie One Foot, when I not only saw that Braille Skateboarding's Tutorial used a different method to the one I had learned but also, when I looked at various other video tutorials, I discovered yet another technique, with no one using the method I had originally learned. Braille's method is to simply Ollie and drag your front foot past the front of your board. The second method I came across in several video tutorials is to Ollie, drag your front foot and tap your

Are Ion Thrusters the Future of Flying Cars? Spoiler - Probably Not But... Hover Boards... Maybe?

Undefined Technologies Ion Propulsion Drone prototype 3D concept image. You may have heard of Ion engines or, more likely, Ion thrusters. NASA uses them on their spacecraft to help maintain a craft's position or to propel them through space.  Upon hearing that you might think they're big, powerful engines, but actually they are not. They work well in the vacuum of space but, once any kind of atmosphere and gravity is involved they'd be hard pressed to launch you off the ground if you strapped four of them to your lawn chair and yelled "up, up, and away!" I am no expert on Ion thrusters - they're basically magic that science has an explanation for. If you want to know the details, The Space Techie website has a layman's explanation .  Build Your Own Ion Thruster Earth based Ion Thrusters work a bit different to their  space based cousins by Ionizing the same air that we breathe to create thrust (an effect known as Ionic-wind ).  While they sound highly soph

I'm Joining the Illuminati Brotherhood By Personal Invitation of Hiltom Rothschild... Wait, What?

How special am I to have finally come of age (53 years young) and am now eligible to participate in building the world alongside other members of the Illuminati Brotherhood... Yes I've received the call by way of an email, which I'm sure is real because I had to translate it from the Dutch language and it was personally written by Hiltom Rothschild, one of the non-existent members of the Rothschild family (or perhaps deep undercover because Google has never heard of them?). A Transcript of the email below: To: etourist From: Illuminati Brotherhood  Subject: Illuminati Broederschap (Illuminati Brotherhood) I am Hiltom Rothschild, a member of the Rothschild family, one of the 13 families of the Illuminati brotherhood. I'm here to let you know that you've come of age and are eligible to participate in building the 🌎 world. It is a calling and a privilege to honor him with pride and gratitude as not everyone will ever be chosen by the LIGHT, many are called but few are ch

Book Review: Brand It Purple by Ashley Knoote-Parke

Ashley Knoote-Parke. Image: Facebook It seems almost redundant to review  Brand It Purple  given you probably won't find a hard copy edition without digging into the second hand market. The book's author and publisher, Ashley Knoote-Parke, seemingly, disappeared off the face of the Earth around about 2015. Which is a story in itself. However, the book is still a very informative guide and, while not specifically targeted at women, many may relate more to a book written by an experienced female entrepreneur. Brand It Purple is a personal marketing and branding guide released in 2009 by then, star on the rise author, Ashley Knoote-Parke, an English born, South African expatriate, who made Adelaide, South Australia her home. There she started her own publishing company releasing a photographic, coffee table book of South Australian sights, along with books showcasing female, then male, entrepreneurs. As well she published 'Brand It Purple'. I came across the b

Movie Review: Zack Snyder's Rebel Moon Parts 1 and 2 (2023/2024)

I f you've ever wanted to see quasi-early nineteen hundreds, Irish farmers fight off high tech space Nazis, in slow motion, over two feature length films then  Rebel Moon Part 1: A Child on Fire  (2023) and  Rebel Moon Part 2: The Scargiver  (2024) could well be the movies you're looking for. Plot-wise that's really all they're about. There's some sub story inspired by Akira Kurosawa's  Seven Samurai  (1954) movie, and some other subplot about our main character, Kora (Sofia Boutella), being 'the one' person the Space Nazi's must apprehend for 'reasons' (she's some kind of murderous deserter, I think, but that doesn't seem reason enough to me for our main bad guy, Atticus Noble (Ed Skrein), to be so obsessed with apprehending her).  I think I've come to the conclusion that writer/director Zack Snyder, while great at casting, spectacle, cinema photography, and visual effects, he just doesn't know how to tell a story to people w

Skateboarding @50+ Reigniting the Learn Kickflips Battle

My skate coach, Oscar dog. O ne of the things I'd like to do before I get too old to do much more than roll around on a skateboard is relearn kickflips. Not that I ever had them on lock. I maybe landed a flat ground stationary kickflip no more than a handful of times, and I only remember landing one rolling kickflip because I had it on video tape for a second (recording over it because I only had a few Video 8 cassette tapes back in the 90s). I actually had a higher chance of landing a kickflip into a trick, on a curb, than landing just a stationary kickflip. Kickflip to; 50-50, to blunt, backside kickflip to tail, and even kickflipping out of a blunt. None of which I had on lock nor can do currently. Getting back into skateboarding again, after a year's break to let my sore feet heal, I started to try kickflips again and discovered I'm actually closer than ever to landing them. I'm able to commit with both feet staying in the air as the board flips. As opposed to tryin