It’s 03:14AM on a Friday, I’ve just sat down after coming home from the midnight screening of Batman Vs Superman and I’m left with a conundrum. See, the thing you have to know about me is that I am hard to sway once I have an opinion, and going into BvS I had the opinion that I was not going to like it. So now, I have to work out how to say I was wrong, and why.
Should be easy right? I expected not to like the film, I watched it, I liked it, must be because it’s a good movie, but then, I’m not so sure. What I can tell you, is that it has a fantastic score, and the cinematography was spot on, but there’s my problem. I shouldn’t have noticed. For a film to work, you don’t notice the individual parts, you don’t look at the cogs working the hands of the watch. You just watch and enjoy, you consume it as a whole. But I noticed the cogs, I saw the Direction, I saw the cinematography, I heard the score, and in those moments, I lost the story.
That’s what you go to the movies for right? The story, but Batman Vs Superman doesn’t have a bad story, set in a world divided in its opinion about Superman, Batman/Bruce Wayne sits firmly in the “against” camp and his reasons are made pretty clear from the onset with the opening scenes taking place in the middle of the third act of Man of steel. Skip forward 18 months and the world is fighting over whether or not Supes is a man to be Feared or worshiped while Clark Kent is writing sports columns and dreaming of Batman expose’s at the daily planet, meanwhile a gloomy Bruce Wayne is chasing down leads on a new case in Gotham, A case that will lead him back to Metropolis.
Through-out the admittedly long 1st act the seeds of doubt are strewn across both camps, all masterminded by Lex Luthor, who, portrayed by Jessie Eisenberg, was a fantastic villain. Comic book fans may take some time to get used to this new version of a beloved character but I personally really enjoyed it, definitely one of the high points of the movie, unlike Henry Cavils Superman who just felt… weak, in amongst such well portrayed characters as Ben Affleck’s Batman (I know, I can’t believe it either) and Jessie Eisenberg’s Lex, Henry Cavil felt wooden and emotionless. But the film was building to something, it had promise, it had depth, I was hopeful.
And along came the 2nd act, this is it, this is “the gladiator match of the century” as pitched by Lex, and I must say, as far as they go, this one was rather underwhelming, now, don’t get me wrong, but as a Batman fan I loved seeing Batman hand Supes ass to him on a silver platter (Don’t worry Superboys, there’s plenty vice versa as well) but considering the build-up, which must have been a solid hour/ hour and a half of movie time, not to mention over a years’ worth of PR , it was all over pretty quick, And just like that, they’re best pal’s working together against Lex. I think, here lies my issue with this movie, it spends so long on the build up to the second act and setting up the big fight, that the 3rd act seems like a tag on.
It feels like the writers chickened out last minute and said, “Hold on, we can’t have a whole movie of these two fighting, lets create a big bad for them to fight.” And so, Doomsday comes into the picture, but again, much like the title fight, after a whirlwind of smoke, lightning VFX and fancy camera angles, it’s over. Again. Lead into a justice league set-up and cut.
So, do I like this movie? I don’t know, and that’s where they get you isn’t it, cause now I’m going to go again, just to find out. But should you go? Yes, definitely, go and make your own opinion then come back here and tell me why I was wrong. But also, go and find out Why Ben Affleck’s Batman is arguably one of the best ones yet, and why Jessie Eisneberg’s Lex Luthor sent chills down my spine. Go because for the first time in history, Wonder Woman, Batman and Superman are on screen together in a live action movie and that alone is spectacular.
There is no End credits scene.