Thursday, March 31, 2016

Mark Zuckerberg Force Feeds Someone a Jolly Rancher: Batman v Superman

No caption needed.

Do we need more writing about Batman v Superman, the artistic/critical/fan disaster and financial success? No, but I'll type out my thoughts as a way of coping.

I just got back from a family vacation, during which I watched Batman v Superman with my mom and sister. My sister and I are longtime Batman fans. We knew the movie would likely be bad, but we were still going to see it for the reasons described in this Onion article. My mom does not care about Batman, but does care about Jeremy Irons, this version's Alfred. My mom later told us she was confused during the entire movie and thought my sister and I would know what was going on. She was wrong.

Let me start off with the two moments of the film during which the audience actually indicated enjoyment. These were:

  • Wonder Woman enters the battle
  • Batman says "oh, shit" at a funny moment

During the interminable movie, the people wanted Wonder Woman and some fun. Who can blame them? 

I will also add that the "murder pearl" scene (when Bruce Wayne's parents are murdered, his mom's necklace breaks, sending pearls bouncing dramatically in slo-mo) was very beautiful. The murder pearls always border on ridiculous, since they happen in every single telling, but I would honestly lose my shit if the Waynes were murdered with Martha wearing a diamond choker.

Plink, plink, plink! Now you're a furry vigilante!

Random Observations:

-One of the weirdest parts of the movie (saying a lot) is Zack Snyder's version of Lex Luthor. He has Jesse Eisenberg, the mumblecore version of Michael Cera, playing his Mark Zuckerberg role again. Ok, young Lex Luthor with a Silicon Valley vibe. J.J. Abrams made millennial Vader and Tarkin work so why can't...oh, right. Because J.J. Abrams is J.J. Abrams and Zack Snyder is Zack Snyder. Lutherberg gets increasingly off the rails as the film continues. What is his motivation in manipulating a fight to the death between Batman and Superman and making a monster out of Zod's corpse? WE HAVE NO IDEA.

-HOWEVER, I will admit I was kind of intrigued by the chemistry between Lutherberg and Holly Hunter's no-nonsense Kentucky senator. I can picture an off-putting but compelling erotic thriller featuring the juvenile, awkward enfant terrible and the older tough cookie Southerner who feels out of place in DC. Not directed by Snyder, though. 

-Going back to Lutherberg's motivations, would it be giving Snyder too much credit to think this might be explained in the upcoming Suicide Squad? Lex's obsession with making Batman kill someone, knowledge of Batman's true identity, and penchant for sending taunting messages in scrawled red letters are all Joker trademarks. Could Joker have been controlling him all along? 

-Did Snyder seriously kill Mercy? We're about to get the first live-action Harley and she can't have a kick-ass fight with Mercy as nature fucking intended? Crossing my fingers that she inexplicably survived. 

Ladies, we all know who the real enemy is.

-All of the Rogues Gallery apparently moved out of Gotham, leaving Batman to battle quotidian human traffickers and pedophiles. He also mutilates them, which I thought was going to be revealed to be the work of a Batman impersonator, but wasn't, I guess.

-Alan Moore's overrated (imho) but iconic The Killing Joke, as well as many other Batman stories, explore Batman's refusal to kill Joker or even passively let him die when he throws himself off buildings or gets sentenced to death for poisoned stamp murder. This would break Batman's "one rule," which is never to kill anyone, no matter what horrific atrocities they have committed. After seeing the carnage left by criminals and cops alike, Batman refuses to take a life. Anyways, in this movie, Batman pretty much immediately decides and then relentlessly attempts to kill Superman. 

-Quick! You're dying! Your final words are to tell the guy killing you to save your mom! How do you phrase this? Do you say, "Save my mom"? Do you say, "Save [your mother's full name]"? Or do you just say, "Save [your mother's first name only]" and hope your murderer can figure out which Joan or Trisha or Leslie you meant? What if a plot point rests entirely on that third option? 

-The director's cut of this film is three hours long. I cannot fathom what could possibly be in those additional thirty minutes, nor do I wish to endure them. 

-Ben Affleck has written his own Batman film for him to direct and star in. You know what? Fine. 

-David Ayer's Suicide Squad is out this August. We're counting on you, Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Annalise Keating, DC Prom King & Queen, et al. 

Lex was just an Amy lackey.

Image info:
Horrified Joker, Penguin, and Riddler: the classic 1966 film
Bouncy murder pearls: from the Gotham TV series, this time
Harley v Mercy: Batman: the Animated Series 
Rosamund Pike contemplating murder: Gone Girl