Batman V Superman: Dawn of Mediocre

The Logo for this film is only the tip of what shows up in this film (Image taken from Movie

Seth Anderson, Staff Writer

This movie is probably one of the strangest releases of 2016, and it’s only in the first quarter of the year. This film was intended to go up against the blockbuster Avengers 2: Age of Ultron last summer, but to Warner Bros. credit, they decided to delay the release. Not to the next summer, but to March. A strange decision, as most movies released in the first three months of the year are average at the very best. But with only one film, Zootopia, being the only real threat in terms of box office, March seemed like the best shot for the film to make bank and ensure a “DC Cinematic Universe” akin to Marvel’s/Disney.

Well, they did achieve a profit. Batman V Superman opened to over 150 million dollars domestically, a success for any film. However, the film’s critical reception was lower than the previous Man of Steel. And the fan consensus was all over the board. Some lauded the movie as the best of the year, with others claiming it killed their childhood icons in front of their eyes.

Let’s start at the beginning. As this is a new universe, we have to see the death of Thomas and Martha Wayne again, something many were rolling their eyes at when first announced. “We’ve seen it a million times, what could possibly be added?” And the answer is a chilling score with excellent cinematography making this the best Batman origin story ever shot on film, bar none. In fact, the first 20 minutes of this film had me believing that the critics had been seeing the wrong movie, because there was nothing I disliked. Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne is probably the best casting choice in a Superhero film since Heath Ledger as Joker. He makes me believe in his convictions, no matter how insane they are, and while he (Bruce) may be a mentally unstable Bat, Ben portrays him so well I’m always invested in his scenes, no matter how boring or stupid.

However, once Lois Lane is brought in, everything starts going wrong. (Both in the film and out) Superman goes to save Lois Lane from terrorists, (after letting Jimmy Olsen die, thanks Zack Snyder) and afterwards he is accused by the United States government for killing Terrorists, something that’s apparently a big no-no. With this going on, Batman has been patrolling Gotham city again recently, and this displeases Superman, as he is a vigilante and a menace to the peace. (Pot calling the kettle black much?)

So while Superman deals with a politician who is accusing him of being a menace, and Batman trying to figure out how to kill him, Lois is… trying to prove Superman didn’t kill the Terrorists. With regular bullets. Something never done by him before, so why would there be any reason to believe he suddenly used a gun? This is only the start of why Lois Lane was shoehorned into this movie and it gets far worse from here.

In the middle of the film, Lex Luthor (Played by Jesse Eisenberg) hosts a party, which introduces the alter egos of Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne to each other, and even introduces us to Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) for the first time. And while this seems like a perfect amount of characters to introduce in this film, we forget that Batman decides to research on more than just Superman and Wonder Woman. By doing this he steals Kryptonite to kill Superman, and files on the founding Justice League Members of these films.

And we still aren’t done. Lex decides he needs a backup plan if Batman can’t kill Supes, “then the devil will do it!” (more religious overtones in this film than there are in the Bible) so he uses Zod from the last fims and some of his blood to create Doomsday. This leads to an 8 minute fight between Superman and Batman. Afterwards, the two of them go and fight Doomsday and join up with Wonder Woman to defeat him.

What I just wrote is about half or less of the plot. I’m not kidding when I say this film is over stuffed more than Spider-Man 3 and the Amazing Spider-Man 2.(Funny it’s two Spider-Men movies with this problem) Zack Synder tries too hard to force everything in here so the solo films of each hero can be its own thing. Which is fine, but it takes away from the main title of the film, Batman V Superman.

The actors range from amazing, (Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jeremy Irons to name a few) to average at best (Henry Cavill) and horrible. (Amy Adams) But by far the most controversial performance was Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor, who actually gave a great performance as the Joker. But not Lex Luthor. The main problem wasn’t the actors, it was the terrible script. Many scenes have terrible lines that I’m surprised were allowed through revisions, and the plot doesn’t help matters, with some scenes serving little to no purpose making it even harder to care for characters.

In the end though, while Batman V Superman is by no means a bad movie, it is very enjoyable, it is filled with far too much padding, foreshadowing, and nods to movies that haven’t even happened yet that this seems more like a “Justice League Origins: Batman V Superman” movie than anything else.