Review: 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice'
As if the trailer and promotional images weren't dark enough, the film opened with the murder of Bruce Wayne's parents (don't worry, this is only one of two spoilers in the review, if you would consider it one). It set the tone for the rest of the film: a story of dark and brooding undertones, albeit being a visual delight of beautiful cinematography—nope, no bright, sunny blue skies in Metropolis or Gotham. The first half of the film focused in part on the question: Is Superman really a hero the world needs? Should he be held accountable for the damage he causes in the midst of his superhero antics? It seems that Batman certainly thinks so.
If you were caught up in the whole "whose side are you on" commotion before the movie release, well, you'll find it hard to stand on the dark caped crusader's side here. I loved Batman in the Dark Knight trilogy, but the bitter, vengeful version that was portrayed in this movie—not so much. Ben Affleck may be a fine actor, but in this case he fell victim to a poorly written part. It is probably the case of trying to tell too much in too little time. It was hard to understand his vengeance against Superman, particularly when Batman wasn't doing much good himself, save for branding criminals.
And then there were the other parts I didn't get—maybe it's just me, but what do the Batman's dream sequences signify? And the part where the Flash appeared to deliver the message that Lois Lane is the key to everything (second spoiler. Also, key to what?), was that a dream or reality? Those bits left me slightly puzzled. On another note, Cyborg, the Flash and Aquaman's first live-action portrayals were more like cameos. But I guess that was understandable, with so much going on, there would hardly be space for adequate character development. At least we have Wonder Woman as consolation. Speaking of which, I think it's safe to say Gal Gadot's portrayal of the Amazonian warrior princess did it justice (thankfully), despite her brief appearances. And how can we forget Lex Luthor—Jesse Eisenberg's take on the genius/villain lightened the mood a little at times with his slightly psychotic and quirky demeanour with a twisted sense of humour.
The best part of the movie came in the last half an hour. Filled with gripping action and marked with Wonder Woman joining the forces, I dare say it might just make it worth sitting through the first two hours for. You get the promised showdown between Batman and Superman, and you get all three superheroes coming together to face one common enemy. What happens in the end? You'll have to catch it in the cinemas soon to find out.
Will I have watched it even after reading less-than-great reviews? Being a sucker for superhero movies—yes.