Movie Review: BATMAN & ROBIN

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batman & robinWarner Bros.
1997
PG-13

“What killed the dinosaurs? The Ice Age!”

So, here we are, at what is universally thought of as not only the worst Batman movie, but maybe the worst superhero movie ever made. I personally disagree with the later assertion (Catwoman? Barb Wire? Freakin’ Superman IV, anyone?); as to the previous — that this is the worst Batman movie — yes. I whole-heartedly agree that Batman & Robin is a rank pile of bat-guano. Pun intended.

Again, I watched Batman & Robin the weekend it was released. I went with my brother-from-a-different-mother Scott. We’re both aficionados of bad, cheesy movies; watching Batman & Robin was nearly our undoing. That’s right, people. I deliberately watch movies like Manborg, and this was the movie that nearly broke me back in 1997.

Here’s the rundown: Batman (now played by George Clooney) and Robin (still played by Chris O’Donnell, but sporting a costume more in keeping with Nightwing) go up against the nefarious Mr. Freeze, who’s stealing the diamonds from the Gotham natural history museum to help power up his suit needed to keep him alive. Meanwhile, at a Wayne Enterprises lab in Brazil (wow, his corporation can be found anywhere), a Dr. Isley is helping to develop the Venom drug under Dr. Woodrue (hey, shout-out to the Swamp Thing, nifty), which leads into the creation of the hulking Bane. Then Dr. Woodrue tries to kill Dr. Isley, which only results in turning her into Poison Ivy and destroying everyone and everything in the lab, except for Bane, who is essentially her muscle, escaping to Gotham to wreak havoc on Wayne Enterprises. Meanwhile meanwhile, back at stately Wayne Mannor, Alfred Pennyworth’s niece, Barbara Wilson, surprise visits. Both Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze crash a charity event attended by the Dynamic Duo, Robin starts getting all angsty with Batman, Alfred is dying from the same affliction that Mr. Freeze has, and Barbara stumbles upon the Batcave and becomes a nipple-less Batgirl. They all team up and defeat Poison Ivy, then head out to stop Mr. Freeze from freezing Gotham and making horrendous ice-based puns. They arrive at the spot a bit too late, is attacked by Bane, where Robin and Batgirl take him out, while Batman stops Mr. Freeze with hope for finding a cure for his wife. Also, a few punches. Gotham is de-iced, Alfred is cured (because of course he would be), and we end on the silhouettes of the three heroes running away from this awful movie. The end.

Batman & Robin is a glorious train wreck that is still talked about 20 years after the fact. It’s easily the worst superhero / comic book movie to have been released in 1997, and that was the year that the live-action Spawn movie was released. The camp is turn up to past 11, with every opportunity for puns exploited to full effect. If you groaned at the idea of Bat Shark Repellent from the 1966 Batman movie, you’re going to love things like the Bat Credit Card, pop-out ice skates in the boots, the numerous ice-based puns and one-liners that Arnold Schwarzenegger chews up and spits out at an 87% efficiency rating. To say nothing of the head-scratching decisions this movie decided to go with. Batgirl is now Alfred’s niece, and not the daughter of Commissioner Gordon? Bane is a meat-headed, non-articulate muscle regulated to Poison Ivy’s bodyguard, instead of the criminal mastermind who broke Batman in the comics? The Nightwing costume for Robin? George Clooney? Truly, Batman & Robin is the worst Batman movie ever made…

…and yet, I can’t not watch it whenever I stumble upon it. It’s horrible, yes, but it’s gloriously horrible. For the same reason I love the 1960s Adam West Batman series, I will watch Batman & Robin just to glory in the campy badness. Really, to quote a better Batman movie, Batman & Robin may not have been the Batman movie we wanted, but (for 1997) it was definitely the Batman movie we deserved for the time. Recommended to watch at least once.

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Movie Review: BATMAN FOREVER

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batman foreverWarner Bros.
1995
PG-13

“One man is born a hero, his brother a coward. Babies starve, politicians grow fat. Holy men are martyred, and junkies grow legion. Why? Why, why, why, why, why? Luck! Blind, stupid, simple, doo-dah, clueless luck!”

So, here we are at the third installment of the Burton / Schumacher Batman movies. This, of course, being the one where Schumacher took over the directing duties, while Burton — not wanting to continue on with the franchise — was given Executive Producer credit.

Boy, howdy was there a noticeable tonal shift with Batman Forever. I went with a bunch of friends to see this the weekend it was released in 1995. I remember sitting there, watching the movie play out, thinking ot myself, “There’s a lot of dayglow in this movie.” Mind you, Batman & Robin was two years off at this time. But, Batman Forever seemed less whimsically dark and more…well, campy. But, I’m getting ahead of myself, here. Let’s make with the rundown, shall we?

In Gotham City, former district attorney Harvey Dent turned supervillain Two-Face is causing all sorts of shenanigans, narrowly escaping capture by Batman, who starts off the movie with a quick McDonald’s commercial take. Meanwhile, Wayne Enterprises employee Edward Nygma is developing a way to beam television directly into everyone’s brains, which, as it turns out, is considered immoral by big industry, and thus Nygma is promoted to customer. After killing his former supervisor, he takes on the persona of The Riddler, devising a way to take down Bruce Wayne. Meanwhile, at a circus performance, Bruce and his psychiatrist date witness the death of a trapeze family saving everyone from a bomb planted by Two Face, leaving late-20s-looking “teenager” Richard Grayson an orphan. Of course, Bruce Wayne takes in “young” Grayson as his ward, while The Riddler teams up with Two-Face to mass-produce the mind-television thing to learn the secrets of Gotham’s citizenry…and also Batman’s secret identity. Meanwhile, Grayson is being a whiny ponce, and earns his name Dick by managing to break into the Bat-cave and taking the Bat Mobile out for a joyride. After running into the Dayglow and Glowsticks Gang, Dick demands Batman let him find and kill Two-Face, with Batsy not havin’ any of it, especially after stealing the Batmobile so soon after having it detailed and all. But, they have bigger problems, as The Riddler and Two-Face have discovered that Bruce Wayne is Batman, and thus arrive at stately Wayne Manor cause wacky mayhem and blow up the Bat Cave. Thus, Alfred creates the Robin costume, and he and Batman head off to take down the two nefarious ner-do-wells, just in time to sell more Batman action figures.

The best way this movie was described comes from the Honest Trailers on YouTube: “This is definitely the worst Batman movie I’ve seen thirty times.” I have to admit, despite the flaws in the plot and characters, there’s a certain kind of charm to this iteration of the Caped Crusader. You do have to agree that Joel Schumacher managed to do the impossible in making Jim Carrey not the most over-the-top character in this movie. Somehow, Tommy Lee Jones manages to out-mug Carrey. Chris O’Donnell is far too old to be playing the Boy Wonder, making his teen angsty thing rather off-putting. As for Val Kilmer as Bruce Wayne / Batman, at the time when I first watched the movie, I thought he made a pretty good one. Now…eh, he’s decent, but that’s merely because there have been more actors having played the part. He’s still better than George Clooney’s portrayal.

Overall, yeah, I still watch Batman Forever once in a while. It holds a kind of campy fun, like with the 1966 Batman movie. However, to misquote a much, much better Batman movie, Batman Forever may not be the Batman movie we wanted, but it definitely the Batman movie we deserved in the 90s.

Movie Review: BATMAN RETURNS

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batman returnsWarner Bros.
1992
PG-13

“Actually, this is all just a bad dream. You’re at home, in bed, heavily sedated, resting comfortably, dying from the carcinogens you personally spewed in a lifetime of profiteering. Tragic irony or poetic justice, you tell me.”

So, now that the world knows my thoughts on the 1989 Batman movie (and if you somehow missed it, it’s right here), you’re probably wondering if I happen to harbor the same “meh” reaction to the sequel, Batman Returns. Well…yes and no. And as always, there a long-winded story behind this.

Unlike the first Batman movie, I actually watched Batman Returns in the theater when it came out in the summer of 1992. And upon my first viewing of the movie, I wasn’t all that impressed. Looking back there were some factors that lent to that: The big one probably being expecting an action movie based on a comic book character. I was not expecting a really dark comedy disguised as an action movie.

It’s Christmastime (even though the movie was released in June, but whatever, it’s Christmas now), and after a flashback featuring a surprise Pee Wee Herman, we meet Salina Kyle, the rather put-upon secretary of Gotham business magnate Max Shreck, a man who, as the name suggests, is a very power man who probably fades away when the sun comes up. After accidentally discovering some nefarious doings Max’s company was involved in, Max personally pushes her out of a multi-story window, where she presumably dies but then brought back to life by ally cats. Meanwhile, there’s a deformed weirdo that dwells in Gotham’s surprisingly elaborate sewer system, calling himself the Penguin working with Shriek to become Mayor of Gotham. Between that and the appearance of Catwoman in the mix, Batman has his hands full this go-round.

Upon initial watching, I have to say I wasn’t very impressed with Batman Returns. It was just a little too weird for my tastes back then. Of course, as time passed and my tastes and sensibilities developed to what they are now, Batman Returns grew to become my favorite of the four Burton / Schumacher-era Batman movies. I’ve grown to appreciate the darkly Gothic weirdness, the bizarre twisted take of the comic book superhero world. The take on the Penguin here is gleefully terrifying, Catwoman proves to be a perfect foil to Batman (though I found myself wondering more than once how she could actually movie in that vacuum-sealed costume), and Gotham itself is a fever dream of a nightmarish Wonderland architecture. The fact that it is set during Christmas just adds to the ambience.

Overall, if you’re going to watch only one of the four Burton/Schumacher Batman movies, I recommend Batman Returns. Now, to relive the horrors that were the two following Batman movies…*shiver*

Movie Review: JUSTICE LEAGUE

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justice leagueWarner Bros.
2017
PG-13

“I miss the days when one’s biggest concern is exploding wind-up penguins.”

Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists newfound ally Diana Prince to face an even greater threat. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to recruit a team to stand against this newly awakened enemy. Despite the formation of an unprecedented league of heroes — Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and the Flash — it may be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.

Lead-up to the big DCEU team-up movie has not been an easy one. While I seemed to be in the minority in thinking that Man Of Steel was decent if not severely flawed, Batman V Superman was a hot mess, and Suicide Squad was also a hot mess, but at least it was a bit more entertaining. Wonder Woman was awesome, but something I consider more an exception to the rule, rather than being a positive step in the right direction for the DCEU franchise. So, it was up to Justice League to fully turn my doubts around about the viability of the series. Will Justice League prove to be the contender with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, or will this prove to be its undoing, ending up like Universal’s Dark Universe?

Also, I realize this is going to be posted at the beginning of the new year, a couple of months since it premiered in theaters, but regardless, possible spoilers ahead. I won’t know until I’ve written this thing, and all.

Pretty much picking up in the aftermath of Batman V Superman, it seems the death of Superman has caught the attention of an ancient intergalactic warlord named Steppenwolf, who has tried to conquer the Earth before, but was stopped by the ancient heroes…heroes which included the Amazons, the Atlantians, and the Green Lantern Corps, among others. Now that the so-called “old gods” have disappeared, Steppenwolf has come back to retrieve three hidden alien devices that, when combined, will turn the planet into the hellish world he desires it to be. As such, Bruce Wayne and Diana Prince begin recruiting other superpowered heroes to help stop the invasion and beat it back from whence it came. Among the ranks are half-Atlantian, half-Human Arthur Curry, aka Aquaman, Speed Force-adept Barry Allen, aka the Flash, and Victor Stone, aka Cyborg. Cyborg is unique in that his powers stem from bonding with the very alien items that Steppenwolf is searching for. Even with that lineup, though, the team still seems to get their collective butts handed to them. They need to get another team member with a bit more power to go toe-to-toe with this New God. Someone…super. Some kind of super man, if you will.

Okay, fine: they resurrect Superman. I told you there would be spoilers.

So, Steppenwolf gets all three devices, goes to Russia and begins terraforming, and the superheroes plus a newly revived Superman (complete with shiny new duds) shows up, lay the smackdown, and everything ends on a happy note, with Bruce and Diana continuing with the notion of formation a league of some sort, for justice. Then the post-credits scene happens, and now I’m sad again. You’ll see what I mean when it happens.

I’ll be forthright: I went into watching Justice League with some very, very lowered expectations. Like, nearly non-existent. I was pretty much convinced that Wonder Woman was a fluke, and Justice League would continue in the same level of suckage the other two “team-up” movies in the DCEU were. But, I was proven slightly wrong.

First, the good: all the superheroes were done right. I’ve said that Ben Afleck was probably my favorite Bruce Wayne / Batman so far, and I’m sticking by it. Wonder Woman is still awe-inspiring as well as a furious butt-kicker (all apologies to Lynda Carter, you’ll always be my first Wonder Woman). As far as the newbies go: I had my doubts about Aquaman, and especially Jason “shirts make me itchy” Momoa’s kind of dude-bro vibe I got from the previews, but that actually works for the character. I was impressed. I am now interested in a possible Aquaman stand-alone if he continues playing the character, no mean feat. This iteration of the Flash, while effective as the comic relief of the group (because the world is not yet ready for Plastic Man, pity as that is), I wasn’t fully convinced he was Barry Allen. He seemed more Wally West than Allen. But, that’s the direction they took, and he played it well. The biggest surprise for me here was Cyborg, as I was convinced he was going to be regulated to background character that only comes up to give out technobabble and such. No, his arc was fairly substantial, given the time frame. And since I’ve already let the cat out of the bag, I have to say it: Superman is finally Superman. No longer is he brooding, he actually laughs at times. Even his costume is brighter than on Man Of Steel. Also, the running time is significantly less than the other movies, so it goes by in a relatively brisk pace. Which, really, brings up:

The bad: While I was glad for a nice, refreshingly shorter movie run time, I get the feeling that maybe that extra half-hour would have actually been beneficial to flesh out things a bit better. Like, with the main baddy of the film, Steppenwolf. He’s not only the most two-dimensional villain I’ve come across since the heyday of the 1990s superhero films, but his motion-capture CG rendering is the worst I’ve seen. It took a lot out of my enjoyment, as I kept thinking how hard it could have been to just use a live actor and use the CG sparingly to beef things up? Could have used some more baking time, guys.

Overall, while the action and fight scenes were breathtaking, and finally getting to see Supes back in form, Justice League seemed to fall just short of the epicness that a team up movie like this should have been. Regardless, it wasn’t as bad as it could have been, and while not a complete turn-around, Justice League is a step in the right direction for the DCEU. Definitely try and catch this on a big screen some time.

Movie Review: BATMAN

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batman (1989)Warner Bros.
1989
PG-13

“Batman! Batman! Can somebody tell me what kind of world we live in, where a man dressed up as a bat gets all of my press? This town needs an enema!”

I remember all the hype surrounding the Batman movie of 1989. There was suddenly an explosion of merch items and tie-ins everywhere you turned. The classic 1960s television show was being shown in daily afternoon re-runs on the local UHF station in my area. The billboards were ubiquitous. There was a cereal, for crying out loud. I knew of at least three guys from my class that watched it multiple times in the theaters that summer. Even if you never had an interest in the comic book character itself, you knew of its existence that year, let me tell you.

And I never watched the original 1989 Tim Burton movie. I had better things to do, really. You can send your hate mail to my email address.

Seriously, even though I did watch all the other following sequels in the Tim Burton Batman series in the theater, I never did get around to watching the 1989 Batman, until about last year when I finally got around to popping it in and seeing what all the hype was about. And I know I’m going to be in the minority here, but…I really wasn’t all that impressed.

Maybe it was because I’m writing this post-Christopher Nolan Batman Trilogy, or because this is what you would call the Comic Book Movie Renaissance. Maybe it was because everybody who not only have seen it and were equally shocked that I hadn’t yet (despite being both a Batman and Tim Burton fan) and had raised my expectations of this being the GREATEST MOVIE EVER(TM), that I was rather underwhelmed when I did watch it.

Mind you, I don’t hate 1989’s Batman. Far from it, for all of you extremist fanboys out there. It was quite entertaining, and had a nice dark yet whimsical quality that is vintage Burton shining through. For my money, Michael Keaton remains the undisputed Best Bruce Wayne / Batman in cinematic history (all apologies to the late, great Adam West). And Jack Nicholson made The Joker an icon all his own. No argument there. I think everybody should watch this Batman at least once, preferably as a double-header with Batman Returns.

I know, I know. There’s the point that, when this was released, the whole live action comic book adaptations available were dismal, and this Batman proved that you could make a dark and somewhat serious comic book superhero movie without delving into camp. And, I’m sure if my parents did decide to let me watch this back when I was 15, it would have certainly blown my mind, and I would be writing this with less jaded nostalgia glasses.

And so, here we are. 1989’s Batman. I like it, but I don’t love it. It is what it is.

Movie Review: The LEGO BATMAN MOVIE

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lego-batman-movieWarner Bros.
2017
PG

“Wait a minute. Bruce Wayne is Batman…’s roommate?”

There are big changes brewing in Gotham, but if Batman wants to save the city from the Joker’s hostile takeover, he may have to drop the lone vigilante thing, try to work with others and maybe, just maybe, learn to lighten up. Maybe his superhero sidekick Robin and loyal butler Alfred can show him a thing or two.

Admittedly, 2014’s The Lego Movie was probably one of the more unexpected hit movies based on a toy property to come out that didn’t have giant robots turning into vehicles or Michael Bay’s name attached to it. I still haven’t watched The Lego Movie as of this writing, mind you; that’s mostly due to my disdain of the nigh-ubiquitous “Everything Is Awesome” theme song that certain chipper types at work seem to utilize as their own personal theme music. I’m sure I’ll get over myself and get around to watching it eventually. Not as of yet, though.

Anyway, reportedly the most popular side character in that movie was Batman, which lead to the spinoff, The Lego Batman Movie. There was no doubt in my head that I was going to see this movie. I remember sitting in the theater a year prior, waiting for the exorcise in overstuffed mediocrity that was Batman V. Superman, and watching the teaser for The Lego Batman Movie, then leaning over to one of the Exalted Geeks in attendance and saying, “Why aren’t we watching this movie?” The Lego Batman Movie, even then, looked to be the superior Batman movie to, not only the one that we ended up watching that day, but to pretty much every other Batman movie that has come before.

Calm down, fanboys and fangirls. You know I’m right. Just hear me out. But first, the rundown (also, there may be spoilers ahead, so be ye warned):

The fun begins with Batman villain The Joker, along with pretty much all of Batman’s rogue gallery (and then some) attempting to hijack a plane carrying stupid amounts of explosives, when he’s once again foiled by The Batman…only to have his heart broken when Batman informs Joker that he doesn’t consider him his greatest nemesis. This prompts the Joker to begin planning his greatest revenge against the Dark Knight…by surrendering himself and the rest of the rogues to the newly appointed Commissioner Barbara Gordon, thereby rendering Batman’s crime fighting services superfluous. Bruce Wayne, while attending a charity event, inadvertently adopts Dick Grayson, then hatches a plan to sneak into Superman’s Fortress of Solitude to steal the Phantom Zone projector with plans to put Joker in the most inescapable jail in existence. Of course, this is just playing into the Joker’s hands, as his master plan is to break out all of the ultimate baddies that were stuck in the Phantom Zone previously to take over Gotham. Can Batman get over his need to be on his own to fight the evil that has taken over Gotham? Will he allow himself to be part of a family again? Is it possible to reference every single aspect of Batman history without coming off as pandering and ham-fisted?

As many have already indicated, The Batman Lego Movie was a highly enjoyable animated action comedy that not only works well as a satire of the various bits of media that Batman has appeared in since Detective Comics No. Something-or-other, but somehow gets to the very heart of who the character of Batman is much better than the other movies ever did. And that is, deep down, Batman doesn’t want to suffer the pain of losing the people he loves, so he keeps everyone at a distance. Until he comes across a situation in which he has to drop those emotional shields of his and let others inside to work together. As a family, if you will.

Character deconstruction aside, The Lego Batman movie should be watched by everyone, not only the fans of the Batman movies, or the first Lego Movie, but everyone. The writing, the animated action, the imagination that went behind this, everything gels together so well that you almost have to take in a second showing just to get all the things you may have missed before. And believe me, if you want to go just to geek out on the Batman, this movie is jammed to the cowl with various references and Easter eggs to geek upon. Even I was impressed at how obscure some of the villains included were.

I need to reel myself in, lest I spend more time geeking out about this movie. Bottom line, if you haven’t seen The Lego Batman Movie by now, you need to go see it while it’s still out in the theaters.

Movie Review: BATMAN v SUPERMAN: Dawn Of Justice

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Batman_v_Superman_posterWarner Bros. Pictures
2016
PG-13

And now, you will fly to him, and you will battle him to the death. Black and blue. Fight night. The greatest gladiator match in the history of the world. God versus man. Day versus night! Son of Krypton versus Bat of Gotham!

It’s been nearly two years since Superman’s colossal battle with Zod devastated the city of Metropolis. The loss of life and collateral damage left many feeling angry and helpless, including crime-fighting billionaire Bruce Wayne. Convinced that Superman is now a threat to humanity, Batman embarks on a personal vendetta to end his reign on Earth, while the conniving Lex Luthor launches his own crusade against the Man of Steel.

I’m going to let everyone know right off the bat: there’s going to be spoilers in this here review. After a couple of days of chewing on the movie, after watching with some of the Exalted Geeks, it’s probably best that I let loose with my various brain droppings on this latest superhero flick unfettered.

I had no intention of watching Batman v Superman during its initial theatrical run. I wasn’t impressed with the previews. I had a feeling, like with Man Of Steel, that this particular attempt by DC to continue building its cinematic universe was going to be more dark, grim and humorless waste of time. Maybe I would watch it at the El Cheepo second-run theater; chances are, though, I would wait for the release on DVD, then take my time with renting the thing to see how it actually is. You know, like I did with Man Of Steel. But then, some of the aforementioned Exalted Geeks decided to catch an afternoon showing on the Saturday of its release, and offered me a chance to buy one of the reserved tickets. Eh, it was a Saturday. I figured, if I were to suffer, at least I have friends along to suffer with me.

So, now here we are. And I’ll just say this again: THERE BE SPOILERS AHEAD. Yar. Ye be warned.

In Batman v Superman, it’s either 18 months or two years (depending on where you’re getting the plot descript from) since the events of Man Of Steel. Due to these events, Bruce Wayne has a super-sized hate on for the last son of Krypton. Also, the public opinion has been split over him, Supes being seen as either Alien Space Jesus a force for good, or a threat to the human race. Meanwhile, there’s a new player in town that also has a hate-on for Superman, the eccentric (read: insane) multi-billionaire Mark Zuckerberg Lex Luthor, who manipulates politicians’ suspicions of Superman’s true intentions to gain access to the Kryptonian space ship and the body of one General Zod. Why? To turn him into Doomsday, silly. Meanwhile, Superman is all angsty, Lois Lane has to be rescued a bunch of times, Bat-Affleck has some dream visions, and Wonder Woman shows up for…reasons. Lexie-poo kidnaps Superman’s mother, makes him and Batman fight, Batman has on his Hulk Superman buster armor(TM) and some kryptonite gas, and then they make up and fight Doomsday. But that’s okay, because that section of the city is deserted, we’re told ad nausium. Then Superman dies. Que the obligatory bagpipe rendition of “Amazing Grace”, and it’s finally done. Until the next movie.

This…was a long movie to sit through. I pretty much felt every minute of the 151 minute run time. That’s approximately two-and-a-half hours. Make a note of that, because I’m going to circle back around to that in a bit.

But first, I thought I’d get all the stuff I liked about this movie out of the way. And there was quite a bit that I did find enjoyable. Namely, the action-y bits. There was a car chase that was pretty breath taking, and of course the (too brief) throwdown between Batman and Superman and then the massive three-way team up to take down Doomsday was, in fact, epic.

I admit that I was proven wrong. Ben Affleck really is, not only a good Batman, but also a very good Bruce Wayne. Still gonna be refering to him as Bat-Affleck, thought. Because it’s hilarious. And really, I have no complaints with Henry Cavill as Superman/Clark Kent. Those two and Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman do their best with the script they were given. Which brings me to this…

The story of the movie and general flow of the thing was, to put it mildly, off-puttingly disjointed. It was almost like the narrative itself was put secondary to a bunch of “This is COOL!” shots of the heroes and villains doing…stuff. And that doesn’t seem to help things when, despite its TWO AND A HALF HOUR running time, it still felt like an unfinished movie. Plot points unexplained, character motivations suddenly turning and changing for no reason, and “twists” that we all not only saw coming months away from opening night, but even the big one (that I spoiled for you in my synopsis up there) at the end, which was supposed to elicit an emotional Darth Vader-like NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! complete with jazz hands, fell with such a splat I had to check the bottom of my shoe to make sure I didn’t step in something. And that’s to say nothing of the over-the-top, completely WRONG characterization of Lex Luthor they went with. Gads, don’t get me started.

I could go on. But, I think the biggest tell was that, although the theater I was in was rather full, they were the most well-behaved and quiet fanboys and fangirls to attend a big, blockbuster featuring two iconic DC characters that was decades in the making. There was no cheering. There was no clapping. One of the Exalted Geeks I was with actually fell asleep at one point.

So, overall, I would have to say that Batman v Superman…well, it was a Zack Snyder movie. It was gorgeously shot, and the action scenes rivaled that of Michael Bay, but when all is said and done it’s just a mess. An entertaining mess, yes, but a mess none the less. I do not see myself watching it again, in any format. Not voluntarily, anyway.

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