Holding Our For a Hero: A review of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice

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Spoilers

I’ve never been majorly into superheroes. When I was little, I loved the Spider-man films but only as I’ve grown older have I got into them a bit more. That’s down to Marvel and their domination of the multiplexes, I’ve enjoyed their world building and despite never truly adoring a Marvel film, I do like the best ones a lot and follow the series ardently.

Thus, I’ve never really been into Batman or Superman, and, of the ones I’ve seen, namely the Nolan films, I haven’t particularly liked. I really hated Man of Steel and so I just assumed that I would not like this, what with the bad reviews and fairly stupefying levels of naive confidence DC has in its world building.

Yet, y’know what. I didn’t hate this film. In fact, I actively enjoyed good portions of it. I liked it more than something like Thor: The Dark World or Fantastic Four and I came away from it having enjoyed a fair percentage of it.

To explain, the film is very flawed and is generally a poor film, but it’s not an awful one. Let’s go into the good points first. Yes, Ben Affleck is good as Batman/Bruce Wayne. He’s an older, more grizzled dark knight. Someone who’s already dealt with the real bad guys and who hasn’t gotten anything in return.

We begin the Film as Bruce witnesses the destruction of Metropolis, his own tower crumbling at the hands of Superman during his climatic fight with Zod. This triggers a chain of events that leads the two to their own confrontation. Thrown into the mix is Lex Luther, a manic, not successful but not particularly bad, version of the character and Gal Gadots Wonder Woman, easily the best thing about the film.

Maybe it’s simply because just seeing any sort of female superhero is a blessing, but Wonder Woman is simply amazing. She’s more than a match for the final villain and when her past is hinted at during the Film, it sets up the future of the character on the screen in an intriguing way. Despite my love for Marvel, DC were the first to get a female superhero her own movie, and she’s a person of colour too.

The inherent problem with this film and the DCEU is they’re trying to build it all too quickly, instead of slowly and surely over time live the MCU. Even though there was a bit of a mess, trying to kickstart the justice league in this film, I was genuinely quite excited when we got to see some of the other heroes.

The glimpse of The Flash, Aquaman and Cyborg are interesting and kind of have me sort of hooked. I think if they get the story right and the right director, then they next few DC films could surprise us. Whereas Marvel had a problem in getting every one of it’s best heroes into The Avengers, due to the copyright issues, DC has got all of it’s best heroes, ready to put them on the big screen together.

What I like most about the Film is the build up of interesting ideas. Superman as a false god, going to court and being seen as a figure of hate are all nice ideas and some of the imagery, particularly a montage of his rescues, give the sullen character some depth, it definitely makes a change.

Though some of the imagery is heavy handed, it’s never as showy as, say, a Michael Bay Film and despite it, I felt compelled by the interesting social themes that were presented to me. I can’t say I’m an expert on these characters so I didn’t particularly care about the presentation of Superman, but I didn’t mind the way he was portrayed.

The plot is very forgettable, I have no clue what was really going on. The reasons for them to fight, contorting their stories together was very contrived and, in the end, it wasn’t really a proper fight, as they only thought they were enemies. For me, though, the Film had an excellent climatic fight that was incredibly special effects laden, stocked to the brim with explosions and pure pyrotechnics.

But, with the soaring music, and seeing Wonder Woman be awesome, I gotta say I got goosebumps. The Batman V Superman fight was drab and pummely, yet this one had me going.

The music was good, Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL are a good mix and the cinematography was good at various points.

Listen, I can’t say that I loved it, but I didn’t hate it either. I expected to be bored but I was genuinely entertained and I see the flaws but I’m just moving past them cause I enjoyed myself. Everyone has a guilty pleasure. I’m proud to admit that I like the occasional clunker, I count Speed 2 as one of my favorite Films, along with Jurassic Park and Shaun of the Dead.

Everyone thinks differently and some people are gonna like this Film, whilst everyone else hates it. I feel no need to defend BVS beyond that, I didn’t find it that bad, but I’m happy to report that yes, I saw it, I enjoyed some of it and would see it again.

Of course, it was drab and slow, boring and stodgy at a lot of moments. The female characters were damsels and the villains were preposterous but, to be honest, if you can’t enjoy a bad Film every once in a while, then what’s the point in watching Films at all.

Rating: B- (That’s a 6 out of 10)

 

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