Nomis' Review of Batman v Superman ***WITH SPOILERS****

Nomis' Review of Batman v Superman ***WITH SPOILERS****

Nomis' Review of Batman v Superman ***WITH SPOILERS****

The 'World Finest' Team meet together on the big screen for the first time in a showdown for the ages in the sequel to Man of Steel! Here's my take on Zach Synder's second directorial film in the DCEU!



1986 was a pivotal year for DC comics. 

Just one year after the company turned its universe inside out by collapsing it multiverses into one with the seminal mini-series 'CRISIS ON INFINTY EARTHS', the company  produced that  year what is arguably two of the finest publications in comic book history with Alan Moore's WATCHMEN and Frank Miller's 'THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS'. 

To say these two publications had an impact on the world of comics and popular literature is an understatement. They didn't just break the rules in what was generally accepted as to how a comic book was to be produced; they rewrote the rules to where their acclaim was felt in the non-comic book reader’s world as well.

Frank Miller's work on TDKR was particular celebrated for numerous reasons. 

For one it brought Batman back even farther to his more darker roots of the early Bob Kane/Bill Finger days (I say Frank Miller Further did this because in the earlier '70s the great DENNY O NEIL, along with NEAL ADAMS, originally started Batman on his more darker roots in his comics)  as an aged and retired crime fighter seeing his beloved Gotham go to hell under the weight of sadist murdering teenage gangs called the Mutants and a police force that was ineffective to do anything about the out of control crime that permeates the city.

More significantly, Miller destroyed the "Superman/Batman team" or the "World Finest Heroes" when he paired them against one another in the final book of the series (original TDKR was a 4 issue "prestige comic series before collected into one graphic novel) with Superman being a lackey for the government who wants to curtail Batman activities since his coming out of retirement.

The two had been partners in crime in the WORLD FINEST comics since 1941 until 1986.

This change in Batman-Superman relationship from Miller's work became so popular that the editors of DC at the time used their conflict as the basis for how they would interact with one another in their current comics if they would ever meet.  

They would have tense and uneasy relationship toward one another even at times coming to blow due to their philosophy on how to fight crime as well as what is considered to be morally right or wrong.

And since that time some of the more memorable and popular Batman or Superman story arcs in comics have revolved around that uneasy relationship in which the two would come to blows both philosophically and physically such as "Kingdom Come" and "BATMAN:HUSH".

And their relationship for the past 30 years in the comics seems to be the basis for the new movie 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice".

This is the sequel to 'Man of Steel', but it can also be called a prequel to the upcoming 'Justice League' movie.  Even Today the merits of 'Man of Steel' is still debated among comic book movie fans as to whether it was a more closer version  of Superman from the comics or was it a "hack" job from a director that don't understand the character at all. 

Personally it was my second favorite Superman movie after the original Richard Donner movie and it comes closer to the comic book Superman than the Donner films particularly after John Byrne mid '80s revamping of the character and his alter ego.  I always thought the Donner movie was more in tune with the superman of the 1950s George Reeve Show just updated for the 70s.

From the start of this movie it was evident that Zach Snyder was going to continue to explore the same issues that was brought up in 'Man of Steel" concerning the knowledge and repercussions that a "god' (Superman) lives among us. 

And does his action justify the collateral damage and human lives that happens when he attempts to stop threats even greater than himself, in particular his battle to stop the world engine and General Zod IN the climaxes of 'Man of Steel'.

It is shown during that battle that Bruce Wayne had an up front and personal ground view of the chaos and destruction and what it done to people as he was flown in to Metropolis right before the battle occurred. This leads to Bruce Wayne extreme negative scrutiny of Superman's action which he feels he need to be stop or at least put in check.

Add in some very sadist manipulation from Lex Luthor and an explosion at a senate hearing on Superman's latest actions and you have the ground work for the impetus for Batman to fight Superman.

This movie very successfully manages to capture the feel of a comic book by addressing real world situations.  

Is the very thing that saves us (superman) also the same thing that can destroy us? Obviously a parable to how much confidence should we put in our leaders or should we place more stock in ourselves? How should we view ourselves if "god" walked among us?

This is the kind of  "deconstruction" of the "super “hero archetype that I always found fascinating and wished would be explored in more in comics as it would really be if they really existed in the world.

Zach Snyder does a masterful job in exploring that issue with the take in Superman that even "god" can be manipulated into doing a man's bidding if he is all good. Something Lex Luthor explore in a hideous manner and goes totally with the incarnation of the character as seeing himself as some savior for the human race or a t least for his own megalomaniacal means .

As for the performances of the actors in their respected characters, I can't praise them enough. They never felt so real to me in any other previous movies or TV show. 

Henry Cavill is the embodiment of Clark Kent/Superman. 

When he talks about his perception of Batman "brand" of Justice to Lois or Perry white (as Clark Kent) you can feel his simmering disdain for his action and righteous indignation that he has to be stop. As well as the scenes of him doing some very superman like things that reminds us how awe inspiring Superman can be in particular the montage of saving the little girl, rescuing the stranded ship on ice and saving the exploding rocket.

But the last scene he has with Lois lane after saving her from drowning and almost killing himself to retrieve a krypton staff is the one that had me getting a little misty eyed. He just knew after he told her "you are my world" and going to face doomsday that he was going to die. And that willingness to knowingly sacrifice himself for his "world" is what separate Superman from most comic book characters and Cavill portrayed it to the letter.

And what can I say about Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne/Batman but HE IS THE GREATEST BATMAN TO EVER BE ON THE SILVER SCREEN! 

With all due respect to previous actors who have portrayed him before, Ben Affleck Batman is now the standard in portraying the caped crusader! And this is certainly FRANK MILLER's BATMAN! And not just DKR version but he was bordering on the "All Star" version! The "God Damn" Batman! 

Brutal! Unforgiving! Tortured! We see perfectly why criminals fear him and why he is known as "the most dangerous Man on the planet" according to Superman in Grant Morrison's famous JLA run. 

When He saves Martha Kent from her kidnapers it is a sight to behold! And that Batmoblile is a beast! 

And I was pleasantly surprised by Jessie Eisneber's Lex Luther it was a different take on the character. One that has never been presented in the comics or a movie before! But within the confines of the story arc it worked. Every time I thought he was about to go over the top in his performance he reign it back in so that his performace doesn’t become a parody of itself.

And his last scene is out of this world. Ding. Ding. Ding. Sounds like a "mother box' to me. ; )

But the most surprising actor in the film is Gal Gaodot.

All the praise that has been heaped upon her performance is true!  Albeit limited time in the movie she command ever scene she's in! And she is one fierce Wonder Woman who enjoys the battle with Doomsday perhaps a little too much! (Look for the smile)!

I can't wait for her solo movie! 

The additioanal suporting actors we're very good as well, especially Larene fishbourne as Perry White.

Overall I really, really enjoyed this movie. It was one of the best times I ever had at the theatre and is a great stepping stone in the DCEU leading up to the Justice League!  And with the cameos and Easter eggs throughout the movie the "dawn of Justice" subtitle is very appropriate! 

The flaw I had with the movie is the editing in the first act is really bad, but the 2nd and third act flows perfectly. And wemight had one to many scenes where Lois Lane was in on the action. 

And one a total geek out fanboy side.....the LAST TEN MINUTES OF THE TRINITY GOING AFTER DOOMSDAY IS A SIGHT TO BEHOLD!!! MY MIND WAS BLOWN AWAY AND THE COMIC BOOK NERD IN ME CAME OUT WITH A VENGENCE!!!!

In conclusion: ONE OF THE BEST COMIC BOOK MOVIES EVER MADE! 


 

 

 

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