MOVIE OF THE WEEK (3/25/16): BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE

"That's right, super guy – this suit won't rust out in the rain like Iron Jerk's!" Batman (Ben Affleck) prepares to face off against Clark Kent, a.k.a. Superman (Henry Cavill) in a scene from director Zack Snyder's superhero epic BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE. Credit: Clay Enos ™ & © DC Comics. © 2016 Warner Bros. Pictures and Ratpac-Dune Entertainment and Ratpac Entertainment LLC. All rights reserved. 
Clay Enos / TM & © DC Comics

WATCH THE TRAILER(S) HERE: 



KEY CAST MEMBERS: Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Ben Affleck, Jesse Eisenberg, Holly Hunter, Gal Gadot, Laurence Fishburne, Jeremy Irons, Diane Lane ... And a few other people in smaller yet notable roles


WRITER(S): Chris Terrio and David S. Goyer (screenplay); Bob Kane and Bill Finger (characters); Jerry Siegel and Joel Schuster (characters)



DIRECTOR(S): Zack Snyder

WEB SITE: http://batmanvsuperman.dccomics.com/

60 SECOND PLOT SUMMARY (OR AS CLOSE TO THAT TIME AS ONE CAN MAKE IT): Following up on the events found in director Zack Snyder's previous effort Man of Steel, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice finds mankind at odds with the godlike figure that protects them from evil ... Who they fear in turn could wipe them all out at a given moment should he choose to do so. This is why billionaire Bruce Wayne, a.k.a. the masked caped crusader better known to criminals throughout Gotham City as Batman (Ben Affleck) is worried about all of the damage and destruction Superman is capable of causing. Bruce's fears are elevated when Superman (Henry Cavill) shows up on the scene of a supposed terrorist in Africa where journalist Lois Lane (Amy Adams) – has been taken hostage. Considering that Lois is the girlfriend of Superman's alter ego Clark Kent, however, it shouldn't come as a surprise that the Krytonian came to rescue her. Of course, Superman has his own concerns about the armored vigilante that is seemingly running around Metropolis, taking the law into his own hands – or in some cases, permanently onto his "victims" bodies. 

But what might come as a surprise is who set up the whole scenario and why ... But let's just say the offspring of a certain well-known businessman (Jesse Eisenberg) might have a very dastardly plan up his sleeve that might just take out all super-powered people – human and alien – alike. 

That is, of course, if the world's greatest detective and the adopted son of a farmer from Kansas don't destroy each other first ...

WHO WILL LIKE THIS FILM THE MOST? Henry Cavill fans; people who have longed to see a film set-up the arrival of D.C. Comics' Justice League franchise; people who enjoy extended fight sequences in superhero movies; those who have wanted Lex Luthor to be portrayed with less of a campy villainy to him

WHO WON'T (OR SHOULDN'T) LIKE THIS MOVIE? People who don't like Ben Affleck and/or Jesse Eisenberg; people growing tired of the brooding superhero thing; anyone who has found Zack Snyder's previous works too bombastic; those who want their characters presented in more traditional than modern means; those who may become bored over the film's two-and-a-half-hours with all the over-the-top exposition of the plot; anyone suffering from superhero movie hangover; those who just find the whole idea of Superman vs. Batman ludicrous, even in a comic book-inspired world

SO, IS IT GOOD, BAD OR ABSOLUTELY AWFUL? A film that will certainly entertain many while making others entertain the idea of certainly not watching another film in the franchise, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice does enough things well to make it watchable ... Even if it isn't exactly a "marvel" of a start for franchise universe of costumed superheroes and villains. 

The things that B V S does well are fine, but they often come off with the classic "mixed bag" role of effectiveness: While he's going to be polarizing no matter what he does simply by being in the film, Affleck does a decent job as portraying Batman as a man steadfast in his cause who truly believes in what he's doing to the point that even if you don't like him personally, you have to give him credit for his dedication to the role. Likewise, the addition of Jeremy Irons in a Lucius Fox (remember when Morgan Freeman was in those three Batman movies Christopher Nolan did?) role as Batman's key assistant can be viewed as a breath of fresh air ... Provided that you don't find Irons' portrayal as droll as his character apparently views some of his boss' evening pursuits. 

Eisenberg, who discussed the advanced criticism of his casting as Lex Luthor during his visit to Cincinnati this January, does a fine job of making the role as the new antagonist for Superman and "the Bat" as he calls him his own. Whether or not you are ready for a hipster (or at least one that is much more a hipster than not as you could picture him on a half pipe at the X-Games or at an Arcade Fire concert more easily than any Luthor prior) version of him, however, remains to be seen ...

Likewise, some might find the critical (in terms of the story) inclusions of Diane Lane as Ma Kent, Adams as Lois Lane and Gal Gadot as Ms. Diana Prince a.k.a. a famous hot pants-wearing woman of wonder in the 70s re-imagined as a more mysterious super "meta-human" here as good moves. For each has a vital role to the plot and each plays their respective role well ... Some, however, might be a bit taken aback at just how involved one of those three is in the unfolding events during the film's climax – and it ain't gonna be the one you'd think would make the most sense.

In short, it used to be an old standard that it was impossible to make everyone happy when it came to movies, especially those based on comic books. While Marvel has pretty much taken that idea and thrown it out the window, movies like Green Lantern (yeah, I DID like it) and last summer's debacle Fantastic Four (NO ONE likes that movie ... NO ONE) prove that it still rings as true as any good cliché would. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice isn't going to end that debate any time soon, but perhaps that was the point: By creating a film with so many different things going on at once, it's guaranteed to at least get people talking about the film enough to pique most people's interests ...

Here's to hoping the inevitable and already well on its way Justice League film it sets up doesn't leave audiences feeling like a hung jury as much as this one might.

OVERALL RATING (OUT OF FOUR POSSIBLE BUCKETS OF POPCORN):

Comments

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    1. There is always going to be a huge confusion between these two. I have two kids, one is a big fan of batman and the other one is crazy for superman. But, both of them love to watch shows by Andy Yeatman together on Netflix. I am glad there is something that holds them together.

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