Worf Reviews – Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice

B v S


Hello Gents, Worf here.  For those that do not know me, I`m a long time follower of the blog and ocasional contestant.  Today I'm going to give you my 2 cents (it is kinda long so maybe it's more like my 2 dollars) on Batman v Superman. The first part will be spoiler free (Well assuming you've seen a trailer or two and have not been living under a rock for the past year) and I'll let you know when to stop reading if you don't want spoilers.

Let's begin with the questions that were on everyone's mind: Batfleck and Gal Gadot's WW. I will say that I was very close to first in line to diss these casting options, however....

Ben Afleck is actually very convincing in both roles.  His Bruce Wayne is a charismatic and believable.  He channels a bit the idea that Bruce is a facade and Batman is the true persona.  Very interesting take and I dare say, it was better than Christian Bale's Wayne.  As Batman he is just friking awesome. The fight scenes are just badass.  If you like your Batman with an attitude this is the one for you.

Gadot does a very competent job also.  I, personally, still think Wonder Woman could have a better person physically, but she is convincing in her roles.  Her speaking role is pretty much as Diana Prince, and she totally kicks ass as WW.  I'm actually anxious in anticipation of her movie next year.

Now for the rest of the cast:

If you didn't like the casting/acting in 2013's Man of Steel, You won't like them here either.  Henry Cavill (Superman), Amy Adams (Lois Lane) and Laurence Fishburne (Perry White) all reprise their roles from that film with the same level of believability. Personally I like that movie and in this one I particularly like Cavill's interpretation when he struggles with who the world wants him to be.

Closing out the main cast we have Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor.  The trailers don't give you much insight into the character, and he is a little scrawny, specially if, like me, you read a lot of post-crisis DC where Luthor was always a big guy.  Eisenberg's Luthor delivers big on his intellect and is as scheming as they come and contrary to every movie version of Luthor before, he is not comical, which is a good thing. It would have really felt out of place in this movie.

The plot is believable, I don`t remember anything just coming ou of the blue, as it where.  Things have a reason to be, but at the same time it doesn't treat you like a 5 year old that has to have everything spelled out for them. It is complex with a layer of subtlety.  Obviously it contais many references to the comics and borrows a fair amount from many stories but it never feels like a patchwork.  You DO have to have Man of Steel in mind as this is a direct sequel to it and parts of the story stem from it.

That being said, I hope I've convinced you to go see it for yourself without giving details or sound too much like a gushing fanboy.  Now for the meaty part.

****** ATTENTION ******
****** SPOILERS AHEAD *****






If you're here you either don't care about spoilers or have seen the movie, either way let's start.

Plot-wise I love that Luthor is the main driver here.  He is a megalomaniac , manipulative, intelligent, greedy, no-holds-bared bastard, and it suits him.  He understands that he can't go toe-to-toe with Superman so devises a brilliant indirect attack on his image and credibility.  He makes Superman appear to be a bully, a buffoon and an inattentive idiot. I mean, we all expect Superman to rush in and save Lois whenever, but to make him look like an international bully who kills without consideration is brilliant. To then make him look like an ignorant buffoon for not being attentive and seeing the bomb in the Senate is a stroke of genius.  And all the while playing the long game with Bruce Wayne to push his buttons and get him riled up against Superman?  Impressive. And again, subverting the trope calling Superman to him by pushing Lois off of a building? Major props. This is a mad genius that knows what he wants. The only thing he didn't count on was "Martha".

Which leads us to the awesomest bat fight scene in movie history.  As much as I like the ones in the previous bat-trilogy, this one gives us a believable live-action Batman who has just walked right out of the pages of the comic books.  He moves like you'd imagine him from reading said comics. AND he kicks ass. Also, we finally get a bat-plane that is great AND doesn't get shod down by 1 frikin bullet.

Wonder Woman is very much at the fringe for most of the movie, and that is good. She wants her anonymity back and unintentionally brushes with Bruce.  We see her waver for a second as her desire to go home and her heroism clash in the airplane, but when she decides to go, she is all in. Her portion of the fight is intense and furious and she shows her warrior side, even giving a little smile when she sees she can let loose against Doomsday.  Both Batman and Superman fight out of necessity, Wonder Woman, as a born warrior, likes a good challenge.

Now, speaking of comics there are many, many comic book plots referenced in the movie. Let's run (at least a few of) them down shall we?

Frank Miller's Dark Knight is the first we have to talk about.  From it we have the older Wayne that has semi-retired, the Martha Wayne's pearls scene, the dead Robin suit, the almost indestructible batmobile (only someone not from this world can disable it), the whole scene where we first see Batman in action (with the two police officers entering the house), the nuclear bomb leaving a skeletal superman and the obvious fight between them.  A fight that gives us the Batman who is a strategist (pretty much absent from all films up to now), he leads the fight where he wants it to go, and while surprised in a couple of places, never seems unprepared.

"The Death of Superman" is the second main reference. Finishing the movie the way they did both surprised me (I NEVER thought they would do "Death" in a movie) and made me respect them more for going there.  For me it also felt "right" for Superman who, after a slight moment of consideration, stoically sacrifices himself to save everyone.  It felt true and that is good in any story where this amount of disbelief is necessary (we are talking about immortal women and demi-gods who can fly and shoot megawatt lasers out of their eyes after all).  Zod/Doomsday's creation borrows from the origins of Superboy (a clone from a mix of Superman and Luthor's DNA).  Doomsday seem to retain some of Zod's memory and knows Superman is his antagonist. That that is the guy who destroyed his purpose/dream of a new Krypton.  The fight (for me) felt very grounded, very "real" for the characters.

Two references that I also have to mention are the Flash appearance from the future in an unmistakable reference to "Crisis on Infinite Earths" and the Batman's future dream that makes a somewhat veiled reference to "Injustice" (or some of the other alternate story lines where Superman watched Lois die) where Superman becomes a sort of dictator and Batman becomes a freedom fighter (his desert clothes also kinda remind me of "Red Son").  We also get a future character reference in that dream sequence.  First the huge omega sign in the desert and later the parademons that attack, both references to Darkseid, who is, at the moment, believed to be the villain for the Justice League movies.

Lastly, I'd like to touch on a couple of easter eggs:
- I liked the way they put Cyborg and Aquaman in the movie.  It didn't feel out of place and sets up the audience for the upcoming movies.
- The device that Cyborg's father activates that fuses with him appears to be a motherbox, another New Gods/Darkseid reference.
- In Bruce's dream sequence where he visits his mother's grave, the creature that pops out is Man-Bat.

- The Russian that gets blown up is named Anatoly Knyazev who is none other than the KGBeast.
- Luthor's prision number is TK-421. It is the designation of the storm trooper who gets knocked out and has his uniform stolen by Han solo in "A New hope"
- The photographer/CIA agent who dies in the desert? Jimmy Olsen.
- Perry white mentions 1938 to Clark, a reference to the creation date of Superman.
- During the funeral, just before the music rises and drowns it out, we can hear a thump, thump, very much like a heartbeat, a reverse reference to The Dark Knight where it is Superman that hears Batman's heart.
- Injustice appears to be referenced again in that the Flash who comes back in time is wearing armor.

Well, that's it for me. Hope ir reads coherent enough and not too much rambling.

Cheers, (or Qapla')


About Kaldath

EMAIL ADDRESS: Kaldath@HeroMachine.com ---------- TWITTER HANDLE: @Kaldath ---------- YOU CAN FIND ME ON GOOGLE+: https://plus.google.com/+HarryCreter/about ---------- FIND ME ON DEVIANTART: http://kaldath.deviantart.com/ ----------