EDITORIAL: How BATMAN VS SUPERMAN Can Succeed On MOS's Strengths & Weaknesses

EDITORIAL: How BATMAN VS SUPERMAN Can Succeed On MOS's Strengths & Weaknesses

Last year's Man Of Steel had a very mixed reaction from fans, critics and general audiences alike. Many of you loved it, others loathed it. This editorial looks at how it's creative team can use some of the criticism they got from the first movie to create a great sequel for 2016...

Hey guys, I just want to start of by saying I thought Man Of Steel was a good film (3.5 Stars out of 5 for me) - not exceptional, but a decent movie that had a few brilliant individual moments. I am aware that perception of Man Of Steel on here is pretty split, with a lot of fans really enjoying the film, while others seemed to have hated it.
I hope that Snyder, Goyer and WB can take on board some of the common criticism there was for this film, and use it to create what could hopefully be a more universally liked movie in Batman Vs Superman…
Work With The Criticism
The main two factors people complain about the movie are: the destruction levels and Zod’s death. Snyder & co can use these to their advantage in the sequel
1) Let Lex Luthor channel the critics
-          Lex Luthor’s motivation for hating and mistrusting Superman can come from the way Metropolis was destroyed in the fight with Zod
-          Some of the best villains are ones that can win you over to their way of thinking (e.g. Ozymandias), and Lex’s complaints are the same as a lot of the critics

2) Use it as character development for Clark to become a true ‘Superman’
-          Clark ought to be haunted by memories of killing Zod (it would have been tough on him), while also feeling guilty about the way his own people killed so many…

-          It should be emphasised that this happened because Superman is a raw and untrained hero – at the beginning of his journey. Use Batman as an example of a more experienced hero – whom Clark can learn a few things from.
-          By the end of the film – we should be seeing a much more experienced Clark, who has learned from his mistakes in the first film – he has become more like the classic Superman, no longer feared, or hated, but loved.

Recognise The Real Faults
At the end of the day, Man Of Steel’s real problems were definitely not its destruction or Zod’s deaths. It was a weak screenplay with clunky dialogue that hampered the movie.
-          WB have clearly already started the process of improving the screenplay – by recently bringing in Oscar winning writer Chris Terrio to ‘help’ the misfiring Goyer out

-          The sequel should also improve on the chemistry between Clark and Lois which was clearly missing in the last movie – and develop a good romance-arc (which general audiences love)
-          Cut-down on Jor-El – he is a walking plot-hole at times. His work as a father figure is done. Instead use Affleck’s Batman to help provide the finishing touches towards a complete Superman as more of a ‘brother figure’ (Clark shouldn’t need a mentor anymore)
A minor complaint would be the lack of overall direction for the DCCU in Man Of Steel. This movie will fix that by bringing in Wonder Woman and Batman – finally launching the shared universe.
-          For this reason, Holly Hunter, Callan Mulvey and Tao Okamoto really ought to be playing characters from the comics instead of characters just randomly ‘made-up’ by Goyer. It is a comic-book movie after all, and Superman & Batman have a wealth of great supporting characters from their histories.
Recognise The Real Successes
As I said at the beginning, the movie overall a good one, and had some truly great elements. BvS should build upon these too as well as the mixed and weak points…
-          90% of audiences will agree (love or hate the movie) that Henry Cavill was a good Superman. He should be given better material to show how what a good actor he can be. Likewise, Gal Gadot can hopefully emulate Cavill’s performance as a rising star to become a new household name as Wonder Woman.
-          The sequel should continue to benefit from the strength of it’s veteran supporting cast. Lane, Costner and Crowe were great in Man Of Steel. Hopefully the likes of Ben Affleck, Jeremy Irons and Holly Hunter can do the same here.
-          Creating an even better villain. Michael Shannon’s Zod was menacing, but perhaps lacked true greatness at times (due to sloppy writing). Snyder should embrace the series’ dark tone to produce a villain people will be talking about for years to come in Lex Luthor.
-          The film’s heart and emotion was my favourite thing about Man Of Steel, and set it apart from a lot of the other more flashy CBMs around nowadays. BvS probably shouldn’t repeat the flashback technique, but should still aim to emphasise Kal-El’s humanity above all else.

If Batman Vs Superman can fix some of the weaker points from Man Of Steel as well as build on its strengths, it will be a better movie for it, I felt the first movie suffered from having all the weight and expectation of The Dark Knight Trilogy on its shoulders, and therefore came across as a little disappointing more than ever.
Lowered expectations this time round should help the movie, while I feel the performances of the controversial castings (Eisenberg and Affleck) will stun the critics and bring a lot of the haters around – much like we saw Heath Ledger and Michael Keaton in The Dark Knight and Batman ’89.
All in all, I think that Batman Vs Superman has a great chance of becoming one of the best CBMs ever, and a lot of that potential has come from less-appreciated groundwork Man Of Steel has laid down – much like Batman Begins did with The Dark Knight.

Anyway, hope you enjoyed the read. If you liked it, thumbs-up and comment. Agree? Disagree? How do you think BvS will turn out? Let me know down below!

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