Monday, March 28, 2016

Monday Movie Mania - Batman v. Superman

First of all, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice doesn't suck as much as people on the internet would like you believe. I say that as someone who went into the theater with very low expectations, mainly over Wonder Woman, but that's another story.

Second of all, I don't get why people are expecting a Jon Favreau, Joss Whedon or Kenneth Branagh from Zack Snyder. This is the guy who brought you Sucker Punch (which I loved) and Man of Steel (um, not so much for reasons I'll get into below).

So if you see it, go in with an open mind and don't expect a fucking Marvel movie.

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1) Ben Affleck has the acting chops when he chooses to use them. This is the best job he's done since 2006's Hollywoodland. (I say that because I haven't seen Argo or Gone Girl yet.)

2) I want more Alfred! Jeremy Irons brought a delicious irony to the role, as in "I haven't been able to stop the kid from wearing tights for twenty years, so I might suck it up and make sure he doesn't kill himself." As much as I love both Michael Caine and Jon Pertwee as the iconic butler, Jeremy has won top spot as the world-weary Alfred J. Pennyworth.

3) At the climax, when Gal Gadot smiles, you'll know why I give her major kudos, and why I can't wait for the Wonder Woman feature film!

4) Jason Momoa only had a cameo, but with him, Aquaman's no longer going to be the butt of Superfriends jokes anymore.

5) The writers, Chris Terrio and David S. Goyer, respected their source material. They did a terrific job of weaving the best elements of The Dark Knight Returns (the graphic mini-series by Frank Miller, not the Christopher Nolan movie which was The Dark Knight Rises), the first Justice League storyline under the revamped New 52, and a certain storyline from the 90's Superman comics that I shall not name in case you, like me, managed to avoid the spoilers because I want you to be as pleasantly surprised as I was.

For the record, Terrio and Goyer did two right things:

a) Restoring Bruce and Clark's personalities. One of my biggest pet peeves of the New 52 was Batman acting calm and caring and Superman having the anger issues.

b) Restoring Diana's relationship with Bruce (pre-52), or at least the start of it. There are some things you just don't fuck with, and sticking Clark and Diana in relationship (i.e. the comics) just because they both have super-strength and no other reason is one of them.

6) Zack Snyder learned some lessons from Man of Steel. He definitely picked up the pacing in this film. As in, I didn't almost fall asleep here.

7) Diane Lane as Martha Kent had the best reaction and line in the whole damn movie upon meeting Batman for the first time. I'm still giggling.

1) Goddess, you have no idea how much it pains me to say this because I love Jessie Eisenburg, but his Lex Luthor was the weak link in the movie. It was almost like he was playing Mark Zuckerberg, if Zuckerberg was the Joker. There was very little of the comics version Lex Luthor, whether it be the scientific genius or billionaire megalomaniac, in his performance.

Over all, I was pleasantly surprised and pleased by this DC movie rendition. I give it 8 out of 10 stars.

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