Thursday, March 24, 2016

Quick Reaction to Batman v Superman (No Spoilers)

Here are my immediate reactions to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. There is a lot to analyze and interpret (which I really appreciate in movies), so I'll have more in the future, but for now I just have to list some bullets:
  • My overall reaction is positive, probably about an 8 out of 10 at least for now, and it is primarily based on deep character arcs, exhilarating moments (especially in Act 3), some poignant and touching scenes, and the excitement for things to come. Basically, I loved the big things, but I think there were some minor flaws. At the end, it really made me want to watch it over again and it got me pumped for Justice League.
  • There are some stunning visuals and the music is outstanding.
  • I loved the way they handled Diana / Wonder Woman and her role in Act 3 was awesome. I can't wait for her standalone.
  • I really liked the new interpretation of Lex Luthor, though I can understand if some other people aren't big fans of it.
  • They made a few bold choices in this film, but I can see from a story and character perspective why they did, and I'm fine with them.
  • Batman is intense, brutal and damaged. I think his character represents the psychological toll of heroing, and I think the reasons he gives for targeting Superman are actually just rationalizations that he has used to convince himself of why he's doing, but there are actually deeper-seeded issues driving him.
  • Superman has a great character arc continuing on from Man of Steel, and I think his character represents the philosophical questions related to power. How do you wield power responsibly and how do you deal with those who will second-guess or resent your power? I also love that, after we see Superman eventually choose humanity in Man of Steel, we now get to see humanity grappling with whether or not to accept Superman. Great continuation!
  • I really liked how they introduced the Justice League characters within the natural flow of this story.
  • Act 1 has a little bit of a momentum problem, but it also contained some great standalone scenes, and it sets up the character dilemmas that are the starting points for their arcs (Batman, Superman, and Lex).
  • Lois did a few things that didn't quite make sense to me, but I'll have to rewatch it see whether they are really plot holes. (There is also a chance some things will be explained by the deleted scenes.)
  • There were a few big surprises that I did not expect, even though I've been following BvS news for a couple years. The marketing team did not give everything away.
  • There are a bunch of comic book homages, which I loved, but some of which might be confusing to the general audience (I'm thinking of a particular one with a Justice League member).
Here's a video containing a more detailed reaction.

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