Film Review: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

Director: Zack Snyder

Starring: Ben Affleck; Gal Gadot; Henry Cavill


Batman v Superman


By Hayley Skinner

“What’s happening Alfred” asks Batman. “How best to describe it?” Alfred replies. Well I’m going to try, and at 2 and half hours of ups and downs it isn’t going to be easy.

This is easily one of the most anticipated films of the year. A chance to see two of the greatest superheroes of all time go head to head in a battle of muscle and philosophical ideals. What starts out as a great idea quickly dies out as Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice attempts to cram too much into the one film.

Our introduction to Batman (Ben Affleck) is great, we are treated to a summarised origin story with fantastic Zack Snyder visuals, and quickly move on to see how the battle that occurred in Man of Steel affected him. The film’s first half hour sets up the two leads and their motivations for wanting to fight the other. Superman (Henry Cavill) has caused destruction in Metropolis including of the Wayne tower building, and Batman has his own vigilante ideas of justice which Superman disagrees with. This premise is exciting and it makes you pick a side. Unfortunately the film isn’t content with just one narrative.

Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) is then introduced as the threat that will intervene and cause destruction in Metropolis. Eisenberg plays the same cocky, irritating character he played in The Social Network, except here, we are supposed to find him threatening. Whilst Eisneberg is a weak link, the script itself lets him and everyone else down. There are long, drawn out speeches about religion and philosophy, none of which make sense and seem out of place in the film. Affleck and Cavill deliver their lines as best they can but are let down by mediocre dialogue from screenwriter Chris Terrio.

Where director Zack Snyder excels in action sequences and dark gritty visuals he lacks in storytelling and flowing narrative. The editing of this film is one of its biggest problems. As you invest yourself in a scene and its characters, we jump unnecessarily to something less interesting. What we are therefore left with is great fight scenes but nothing to keep you invested in the characters.

Underneath the sloppy script, there is greatness in this film to be found. Affleck is one of the most real and interesting Batman/Bruce Wayne’s on screen. His performance and action set pieces leave you looking forward to the Batman solo film. Jeremy Irons as Alfred is another stand out and provides the fleeting moments of dry humour throughout. Most importantly we get one of our first DC female superheroes in Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and when she shows up it isn’t a moment too soon as she makes a huge impact on the film, leaving you wanting more.

What people will go see this film for is to see Superman and Batman fight and when we get to this you won’t be disappointed. The fights plays out just like Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns comic and panders to the fans who have been waiting to see this on screen. It’s the rest of the film that leaves you worried about the upcoming Justice League films and hoping that there can be more substance to Snyder’s style.if (document.currentScript) {