Quick Hit: A film that is tremendously overly ambitious, yet oddly entertaining popcorn fare.
Let's get it out and say it: I'm a Superman fan. I think that much is obvious in my photo. I eagerly went into this expecting Superman/Man of Steel Part II.
Which is not what I got. Before I get up on my fanboy soap box, I'll talk about a few other things. Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice (man I get exhausted just typing that unwieldy title: from now on it's BVS) is a Batman movie first, and a Superman movie second. The movie has quite a few good things going for it. I didn't realize how much I missed the Bat on the big screen until he was back. Batfleck (Ben Affleck) does a good job, both as Bruce Wayne, and a gruff, angry, albeit confused at times Batman. The other casting in the film is good. Jeremy Irons as Alfred is inspired casting. You can taste the years behind his sarcastic comments towards "Mr. Wayne." Gal Gadot exhibits the grace and beauty, as well as fierceness that you would expect in an Amazonian warrior.
For me though, the two standouts are Henry Cavill as Superman and Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor. Though Cavill lacks the charm that Christopher Reeves brought to the role of Clark Kent, I don't think I have ever seen a more convincing Superman. He owns the role in a way that I don't think anyone else has since Reeves (Sorry Dean Cain). Jesse Eisenberg was not a person I thought would own the role in the way he does. I am happy to admit that I didn't like this casting before I saw the movie, and left impressed and excited to see more of him. There are times in the movie that he exhibits true insanity with just a change of expression or a darkening of the eyes. I'll also say that the writers did a good job portraying him as the eccentric genius of our current times, that is tech savvy and very in our faces.
The action scenes are also tremendous. As Snyder did with Man of Steel, you can feel the power behind the punches, and the speed of the film is almost to much for a spectator to handle. Indeed, I didn't see it in 3D because I thought I might have a little too hard of a time. But the sound editing/mixing and the score itself is another highlight. Hans Zimmer's score adds a resounding darkness to the film...
Oh did I say darkness? Ya... this film is dark. Really dark. And here I go, up onto my soap box. That bugs me! I don't mind having gritty realism. In fact, the Dark Knight Trilogy was amazing. But Superman isn't supposed to be about gritty realism. We are talking about a super powered alien from another planet that gets his power from our sun, and stands for truth, justice, and the American way. A truly realistic Superman would have us worshipping him like Zod wanted to in Man of Steel. Superman is a character that is supposed to exude goodness and light, and this movie consistently has him sad, dark, or mad. Ugh.
Spoilers... I think?
Another detraction for the film that I think everybody could agree on is just the overstuffedness of it. I know I made up that word, but it fits. It has so many Easter eggs that it feels like they just wanted to throw in everything. All the actors, all the dream sequences, the cameos, the world building for the Justice League films... it's just unnecessary. Just make a film. Allude to other people like they already exist. You don't need to actively show them.
Anyways, the film was still good. I was entertained pretty much the whole time, but I don't know if that is because I'm such a fan boy in the first place. I give the film a B.
After my traditional IMDB link, I'll give you the famous Batfleck glare, which is just bound for meme status.
For more information about Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, just check out IMDB.
"All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy"