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Friday, September 9, 2016

Movie Talk - Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition


It’s September, so you know what that means: I get older! That’s right, my age officially gets higher and those few specks of white hair in my beard start to multiply… oh yeah, it’s Superman Month. This month really has no theme since I really couldn’t come up with one. I guess if there is a theme, it’s that I’m mostly looking at out-of-continuity stories. Anything’s really on the docket this time. Today’s quick look is definitely an example.

Back in March, I did a review on the theatrical version of Zack Snyder’s court drama, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Even when I saw it, I knew things got cut out and that hurt my enjoyment of the film even though I liked it. When word of an “Ultimate” edition started to crop up, I knew I was going to check it out. Before I got it, I had heard that it was better than the theater cut but not by much. Eventually, I got it and saw it over the span of a few days. Hey, I was watching it before work, so I had an excuse to split it up. So, is it indeed better than the theater cut? By the way, "there be spoilers here, arrr!" Also, if you want to know at I originally said in March, click here.


PROS
More Clark Kent is always good.

This was much better. I think watching the movie again helped things make more sense. A lot of the things I said were good are still good. Ben Affleck is still a cool Batman even when he’s pretty bloodthirsty. Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman was still cool and Henry Cavill still brought it as Superman. The action still rocked even though we had that really forced fight between our heroes. More on that later. Finally, Jesse Eisenburg’s Lex Luthor felt a little better to me. He really reminded me of the Lex from Superman: Birthright (they even had the same hair) and provided some levity with that performance.

The inclusion of those 30 minutes definitely help out the film. They made things much more clearer. A majority of those scenes were ones that revolved around Superman’s story and Luthor’s plot to defame Superman. Basically, we got more Clark Kent who was marginalized in the theater cut. He was investigating the Batman and trying to see what was what. We had Lois investigating the explosion at the Capital and that bullet more. 

We even got scenes that made Lex’s plans work better than in the original cut. The scene in Africa got expanded on and we got to see Lex's main henchmen clear up loose ends. Even things that folk definitely wondered about like why Superman couldn’t sense the bomb was explained. In the end, it was definitely better than the theater cut. It also felt more like a Superman movie to me since we got a lot more of Clark doing his thing.
Yes, I'm saying I like this version of Lex. He could switch to decaf though.


CONS
Still felt forced. It was like someone got a couple of action figures together and boom, you have a fight.

While I liked it more this time around, the cons from before still got to me. The fight between Superman and Batman is so forced. The whole movie is plotted around these two going at it and they both come out bad at the end. Supes could have easily took down Batman without killing him.  Batman came off like a loon though to be fair, that was the point of the fight. I get what Snyder was going for the he “Martha!” scene, but even that was weird.  The fight itself is at least entertaining. I just wished the factors around it were better handled. You also still had some misplaced scenes like the “JLA Roll Call.”

I do still think Superman dying at the end wasn’t earned but it does work a little better here. I think if we had more of this Superman (another movie before BvS), I think it would have worked much better than it did. While Eisenburg’s portrayal of Luthor felt better to me, he did have those over-the-top moments that made me scratch my head a bit. He had a couple of grating moments but he was the villain after all. There were also a couple of points where it did get a little too long. Three hours is a bit much and I don’t know if it needed to be this long. I’m not annoyed since “the more, the merrier,” but I can see why some people would feel that way.

Oh yeah, how did Clark find out Bruce's identity? It's assumed he used X-Ray vision but that should have been revealed here. I thought this cut would have revealed it but it didn't.

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Overall, I did like this better than the theater cut. I do wish this had been the actual cut we got in theaters, but I completely understand why some of this was cut out. Even my bladder didn’t last through the original cut. I do wish some of the Clark scenes and a couple of other stuff made it into the theater cut though. A lot of folk may had viewed the movie better. Here’s hoping next year’s batch of movies are better critically and financially. I know 2016 hasn’t been kind to the DCEU or really any comic movie that’s not Marvel or Deadpool. Suicide Squad was fine but I’ll get to that at a later date. For now, Peace and God Bless.


NEXT TIME: SUPERMAN – FOR TOMORROW… HMM…

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