This is it, the pinnacle of Zack Snyder’s film. This is his full vision with an additional 30 minutes of content. I reviewed the theatrical cut of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice here on Action Figure Junkies (see review here). I called the film “Completely uneven”. I was hoping that many things would be explained in the extended cut that was promised. I went in with an open mind. After all, I did like the core of the story that was present in Batman v Superman. I just felt as if this Batman should have had his own film first and that, most of the time, the film felt rushed. How could it not with introducing characters like Lex Luthor, Wonder Woman, and Batman to the Man of Steel’s established universe? Would the extra 30 minutes allow the story to breathe? No, not at all. In fact, I have even more questions than I did before. Here are my questions, questions that need answering.
Editor’s Note: I broke the questions into two blocks. The first is made up of lighter questions, things that I could overlook. The second group of questions addresses issues that any fan of these characters, the genre or just simple storytelling will understand.
The Lighter Questions:
- Jena Malone’s casting was a big deal. Early rumors had her pegged for Batgirl or perhaps a female Robin. The Ultimate Edition revealed her to be Jenet Klyburn. Who? Turns out that she is “one of the lead scientists at at S.T.A.R. Labs in Metropolis”. So this really warrants her a credit in the opening title sequence? I seriously had to Google her character. I believe Ezra Miller (who played the Flash) may have had more lines.
- An opening title card reveals that the events of Man of Steel, which lead to the destruction of Metropolis, happened 18 months ago. Yet, practically every character states that it was two years ago. So which was it? Apples and Oranges, but one does contradict the other.
- If this film does not tie into Christopher Nolan’s Batman, then can I please have a reason as to why Wayne Manor is in rubble?
- We see Superman barely blink when Wallace Keefe’s (Scoot McNairy) bomb explodes in the Capital. His hair doesn’t even get messed up. But hey, he is Superman. So riddle me this, why does the rain wreck Superman’s hair, but an explosion does not?
- Why did the writer and director feel as if this Batman needed a Rocky montage before his fight? Isn’t he supposed to be the brains-over-brawn character? It was just an unnecessary scene. A montage of Batman weaponizing the Kryptonite would have been better.
- After Batman and Superman reconcile, there are only 10 minutes to save Martha Kent (Diane Lane). So that is more than enough time to shed his armor, change into a new cowl, and apply black eye makeup, right? (If we really want to throw stones, Wonder Woman even changed her hair and removed her nail polish before suiting up).
- Why does the prison shave Lex’s head again?
- Why did Clark mail the engagement ring to Martha? Is he not faster than a speeding bullet? If he is, that would make him a lot faster than the United States Postal Service. I don’t know which fascinates me more, the fact that Superman trusts the USPS with an engagement ring, or that Warner Brothers missed a perfect product placement opportunity with FedEx.
The Serious Questions:
- Batman (Ben Affleck) is on the hunt for the White Portuguese in the film. He is trying to find out who or what that is. With all the means at his disposal, he didn’t have a simple Google Alert notify him of a boat called the White Portuguese in the harbor? He is the world’s greatest detective, right? I guess only a government encryption device could reveal the answer.
- Clark Kent (Henry Cavill) is a reporter for The Daily Planet, the equivalent to writing for the New York Times. How does a reporter not know who one of the world’s richest men is? I might turn a blind eye to this, but Metropolis and Gotham are almost as close as Hoboken, New Jersey and New York City. I guess Clark really is just a country bumpkin reporter who has only been in the city for two years (or 18 months).
- Let me get this straight. Lex Luthor, goes through legal channels to obtain a large sample of Kryptonite. He basically gets a government sanction to experiment on the rock. He is the bad guy, right? However, Batman, the hero of the film, steals it from LexCorp and then leaves a calling card. So, in essence, Batman is now a criminal? Well, outside of operating above the law as a vigilante.
- It is revealed in the film that Affleck’s Batman has been at it for over twenty years. So where the hell was Batman when the Kryptonian World Engines landed in Metropolis? He comes to the city as Bruce Wayne! The guy has a Batplane at his disposal, but takes a helicopter and then a Jeep to get his employees out of the Metropolis Wayne office.
- Anyone else find it a little too convenient that Batman pre-sets his Kryptonian spear right where he would end up needing it? This Batman was out for blood, and he wasn't going to listen to anything the alien had to say. Why not start right off with the spear? Oh, wait, we need the big action scene. I guess fanboy cheers overpower story logic.
Initially, I gave this film three stars out of five (see my review linked above). I would now reduce it to one star. This film is a mess of storytelling and simple logic leaps made by people who were either rushed into production or had little clue as how to tell a complete coherent story. The writers borrowed a lot from Frank Miller’s “The Dark Knight Returns” and Dan Jurgens “The Death of Superman”. I don’t know where they got the rest from. They probably figured that the fanboys would just hoot and holler to see these characters duke it out. I want a little bit more from my movies, especially my superhero stories. Fans of these characters had been waiting decades for this. They deserved better.
This is where you now call me a Marvel fanboy.
Own Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition on Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack or DVD on July 19 or Own It Early on Digital HD on June 28!