Well folks, it’s here. After literal years of speculation, second guessing, and sad batman memes we’ve actually made it to Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. And well… it’s just kinda weird isn’t it? I can’t remember ever going into a movie with as much baggage as I’ve got going into this one. Most movies I’m either excited about, not excited about, or going because my wife wants to see it and thus entirely ambivalent about it. These are the categories. Batman V Superman though is just… odd, some bad trailers, some weird marketing, and just the time that’s passed since it was announced (July 2013) have all come together to give us a lot of reasons to have a lot of doubts. So here are five reasons to forgive Batman v Superman, to go into it with fresh eyes, and (like Creed would want) with arms wide open.
Reason 1: Forgive the Doomsday Reveal
Okay, one of the bigger problems with BvS was one of the earlier trailers giving up the big Doomsday twist. Obviously: this was not good. Trailers aren’t supposed to give things away, they’re supposed to peak interest and start speculation, but not give away major plot points. That said, trailers generally do show more than just the basics (the Avengers trailer famously gave away the whole ‘Hulk catches Iron Man’ ending.
Plus, honestly, we all pretty much knew Doomsday would be in this, right? I mean Michael Shannon (Zod) came out with that weird story about wearing fins and the bathroom or something, and there was bound to be some ‘Oh no, we better stop fighting each other so we can fight that thing’ moment in the movie. It’s just what happens. So yeah, I’m not saying it wasn’t a mistake, just that it wasn’t as big a mistake as we might have thought it was. It was too much information. The classic “girlfriend tells you intimate secrets about her body hair” situation, you know it’s a thing that happens, you just don’t want to know too much about it. Don’t let it ruin your relationship… or your re-movieship.
Reason 2: Wonder Woman
I wrote about a thousand words on this a few weeks ago for moviepilot.com, so I’m not gonna belabor this point too much, but suffice to say, one of the best things happening in this movie is (somewhat ironically) neither Batman nor Superman. Wonder Woman is DC’s big trump card over Marvel and it seems from our fairly limited looks at her, that she stands to make a big impression in this movie. Hopefully she also brings some level-headed “Why are you men doing nothing but grimacing at each other??” into this very grimacey world. Check out my full article on this over here, but I’m excited to finally get a decent Wonder Woman on the big screen.
Reason 3: Lex Luthor
Whether your a fan of Jesse Eisenberg’s fluffy wig or not one of the few consistently positive things coming out of early reviewers has been Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor. Seems like he’ll bring a lot of menace to the role while also (pre-menace) providing a little bit of comic relief. Lex has been very hit and miss movie-wise and while Eisenberg isn’t as big and muscular as his comic book counterpart he can still bring a good bit of gravitas to the world and provide more of a believable bit of subtle villainy, as opposed to Zod’s sort of shouty “I will find him!!!!” villainy from Man of Steel.
Reason 4: The Fisticuffs
Look, Zach Snyder is not an awesome director. He struggles with variety, and story and Man of Steels climactic fight was about twenty minutes too long and didn’t make a crap ton of sense BUT, the guy can make a cool fight scene when he wants to. And now he’s not just working with “these two guys are real strong, watch them punch each other” which was all he had with Zod and Supes. Now he’s got Batman, Doomsday, Wonder Woman, and Superman all of whom (hopefully) have a lot of variety style-wise. So if nothing else we should get some cool fight scenes out of this, and there’s nothing wrong with that!
Reason 5: Batfleck is best
In my mind, the biggest thing this movie has going for it is Ben Affleck’s Batman. Weird the journey he’s gone on since the last time he put on the old spandex, huh?? I mean for a bit there he got kicked out of Hollywood entirely and now here he is playing probably the most marketable character there is, and I think he’ll do really well with it. He’s got the gravitas and the huge chin required for this sort of role and his bat-stubble is absolutely on point. I’m way more excited at the idea of him getting his own franchise rolling (particularly if the Red Hood rumors prove to be true) but I’m very excited to see what he brings to the character as a part of this showdown. Throw in the Jeremy Irons as Alfred factor, and I’m very excited to know these characters and see how they fit into this new, larger DC world. Also: no vocal chord strangling Bat-voice… so that’s something.
So there you go guys, look, I’m not saying Batman V Superman will be great, I just have too many question marks about the grim gritty world and the plot to really really buy in. But I think the three year (just about) gestation period has really hurt the movie more than anything. In the internet age you have to play things so very carefully in everything you do and I think over those three years we just had too much time to pick it apart. So look, it won’t be great, but it might be good. I’ve been (at times) driving the criticism train for this movie, but I’m ready to give it a shot. To go into it with an open mind, and just sort of see what old Snyder’s got for us, the only person I’ll be hurting by going into it with negative expectations is myself.