So here we are, Friday, March 25, the Friday that film and DC Comics fans have waited for. After years of discussion and leaked images, Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice has arrived, and even before its “official” release, it seems like everyone has something to say (and mostly negative).
The reviews I’ve seen, to be frank, have been quite terrible. It’s to the point where I’ve been thinking, “Did we see the same movie?” For those of you that have been out the loop, allow me to fill you in. For those of us in the film industry, early screenings have been available for us in certain markets since last Friday (ours was Tuesday, March 22). Since then, there have been scathing reviews coming up from every crevice of the earth. Why? I have no idea. Here are a few headlines:
New York Post: “Batman v Superman is so bad it could kill plans for a DC Universe”
USA TODAY: “Batman v Superman gets no super reviews”
Rotten Tomatoes: 1.5 stars and 31% rating
And the conspiracy theory: “Some people think Disney paid critics to give bad reviews.”
If you type in your search engine “Batman v Superman negative reviews” you’ll see the internet circus in full effect. The funny thing is, a lot of people are going to see the film with preconceived notions already. As opposed to just watching a movie and judging it for what it is, many already have standards set so high that they will be impossible to meet. Some people don’t like director Zack Snyder, others aren’t fans of DC, yet, they are still going to see the film. I personally can tell you there is a boatload of Marvel bias. Because of this obvious bias, I knew the film was going to have a rough week. Here are two examples:
- We’re allowed to bring a guest with us to early screenings. My guest had been amped to see this for months. After the film’s conclusion, everyone was excited and talking about how awesome it was. The very first thing out of his mouth? “Deadpool was better.”
- Everyone stayed seated after the movie was over. I’ve never seen so many people sit through the credits (in anticipation of a sneak preview of a sequel). After the credits finished and people were disappointed in the absence of a sneak peek, you could hear groans of “Of course there’s nothing, its not a Marvel film,” and “Only Marvel films do that” and my favorite “Screw DC! That’s why Marvel is better. They would’ve left us a preview!”
That ladies and gentlemen is enough to support my point. Everyone should go into a film and give it an unbiased, standalone look that it deserves as a creative piece of work. But it was very apparent that loads of people have, and are going to, compare this to anything Marvel has made (and most recently the success of Marvel flick Deadpool). So now that I’ve addressed that, let’s get to the good stuff.
The film is awesome. Perfect? Absolutely not, but its definitely awesome. I only had two concerns coming into this: How are they going to have these two fight each other, and If Ben Affleck fails, I’m done with him forever. Well, I’m here to say Ben Affleck did not fail me and I unfortunately cannot rid him from my life from here on out.
I’m not going to give any spoilers so don’t worry. The way they tied Batman and Superman into fighting each other was pretty good. Henry Cavill (Superman/Clark Kent) did a good job and I was pleased I didn’t have to deal with an ill-placed, smushy, love fest with him and Amy Adams (Lois Lane). Gal Gadot was a great casting as Wonder Woman and I like how she’s introduced. The trailers make it seem like a fight is taking place between Batman and Superman and then poof, she just appears, conjuring a “Is she with you?”
The only problem I had with the cast was Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor. If you are just seeing this as a movie buff then you may like it. But I’m 99% sure if you’re watching this as a super geek, comic aficionado, or DC fan, you are not going to like Jesse Eisenberg. I felt like I was watching him compete with Heath Ledger for title of “The Best Joker” instead of the head of LexCorp. Lastly, there are a few slow moments in the film but, not enough that it should affect the feel and flow of the story (it is a story by the way, not just a three hour long brouhaha).
I give Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice a 9 out of 10. There’s tons of action and the suspense build-up is immense. I have no doubt that even with these negative, unjust, biased, awful reviews, it’s going to do great numbers in the box office this weekend. You should leave the theater feeling fulfilled, having seen the greatest fight in the history of mankind. Or, you could walkout thinking to yourself, “I had no idea Metropolis was so close to Gotham?”