Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pt. 1 – Prologue

“There was a time above. A time before. There were perfect things. Diamond absolutes. But things fall, things on earth. And what falls, is fallen. In the dream, they took me to the light. A beautiful lie.”

As Batman vs. Superman starts we are shown a prologue that plays an important role in  the story and has major repercussions for the rest of the movie. I haven’t seen too many prologues that have such an influence on the rest of a film as this one does. In this prologue we are shown the death of the Bruce’s parents at the hands of Joe Chill, we see Bruce’s discovery of the caves near his home, and we see the final battle of Kal-El and Zod in Man of Steel but from Bruce Wayne’s perspective. This is a lot of ground to cover in the short 10 minutes that is devoted to these scenes.

The prologue starts with the Death of Thomas and Martha Wayne while the haunting score of Hans Zimmer’s ‘Beautiful Lie’ plays during this scene. We also hear the above quoted dialogue from an older Bruce Wayne during this scene.

In regards to the death of the Wayne’s, this is a scene that has been shown many times on the big and small screen. I myself have seen it four times in various formats prior to this movie. However, I believe this one is the most impactful of the ones that have previously been shown. This scene focuses solely on the mugging and murder of the Wayne’s. Only one word is spoken in this scene, “Martha”. This scene focuses more on the loss of Martha Wayne and how a little boy had to watch his mother die. While Batman Begins had focused on the relationship between Bruce and his father, Thomas, this movie is more about the loss of Martha. This scene is juxtaposed with the funeral of the Wayne’s and in this film, Bruce discovers the cave full of bats near his home during this time. As Bruce discovers the cave of bats they end up carrying him up to the light and out of the cave as the older Bruce says “In the dream, they took me to the light. A beautiful lie.”  These two short scenes are the essence of Batman and are the impetus of how he comes to be. Bruce Wayne becomes Batman because his parents are killed and he desires to right this wrong for the rest of his life.

From there we jump ahead in time to the events that we see at the end of Man of Steel (2013). Bruce Wayne arrives in Metropolis via helicopter from Gotham and witnesses first hand the final battle between Zod and Kal-El while driving on the streets of Metropolis. Bruce has an office building full of friends in Metropolis that he is trying to reach as Metropolis falls apart around him due to the World Builder wreaking havoc in the city. As Bruce reaches his office building, he is too late as he witnesses Zod destroy the building with his laser vision. Bruce can only watch in horror as his building collapses killing his friends and coworkers. Bruce then makes his way to the building to try and find survivors. He helps a security guard, Wally, who is trapped in rubble. He also is able to save a young girl from being killed as debris collapses almost killing her. As Kal-El and Zod continue to fight in the sky above Metropolis, Bruce watches with hatred towards these two aliens who are destroying a city and killing innocents.

This is the moment that Batman starts planning to stop Superman. This is the moment when Batman vs. Superman starts. A common complaint of this movie is that there were only a small amount of actual fighting between Batman and Superman. When in reality, Batman vs. Superman starts 9:50 into the movie.

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Zack Snyder does an excellent job of tying in Man of Steel to this movie and propelling the overall story forward. Including this prologue scene setting up Bruce Wayne’s hatred of Kal-El and what he did to Metropolis was a smart move in more ways than one. Not only does it move the story forward, Snyder validates one of the biggest complaints from Man of Steel. This complaint is about the wanton destruction of Metropolis during the final battle and the major loss of life. Snyder doesn’t attempt to excuse or explain why it happened, but instead infuses those complaints into Bruce Wayne and his motivations for Dawn of Justice.

Before this horrific moment, the public and even Bruce Wayne did not know of Kal-El and his existence on Earth. Then all of a sudden in a matter of days, the world changes and these aliens are destroying cities and people are dying as a result of their feud. Dawn of Justice deals directly with this fear, from Bruce Wayne and others being scared of what Kal-El can do, to the media having a heyday with biased reporting and trying to pit half of the population against the other half. In real life we can’t even have a presidential election without arguing and protests, with the media fueling hatred for the two parties to go against each other. Imagine if an event such as what happened in Man of Steel actually happened and how the media would cover it and try to influence the population. I imagine it would happen pretty close to what is portrayed in this film, half of the population would hate Superman, the other half would love him and the media would do all it could to demonize the other half it doesn’t agree with. I believe this to be a genius move by Snyder and the story writers. This isn’t your father’s 1978 Superman feel good story, and nor should it be. A lot has changed in 35 years and a modern retelling of Superman should reflect that.

 

 

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice

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“Black and blue. Fight night. The greatest gladiator match in the history of the world: God versus man; day versus night; Son of Krypton versus Bat of Gotham!”– Lex Luthor

Batman versus Superman. When this title was announced at San Diego Comic Con in 2014, it blew my mind! I was eagerly awaiting the announcement of a Man of Steel 2 movie, but this! This, my fellow nerds, was paramount to the Second Coming! Then to top it all off – Wonder Woman was announced to be a part of the movie too!

Batman AND Superman in the same movie?! The Man of Steel AND The Dark Knight at odds one with another?! Wonder Woman fighting alongside the two most iconic superheroes of all time?! Finally! This will be the first time The Trinity would appear on the big screen for fans to enjoy. For the first time we will see Diana Prince in action on film. The potential for greatness and movie making history was finally announced! And let me tell you, this film did not disappoint.

Wait, WHAT?! What is this you are reading? I’m sure you’re asking yourself, “Am I truly reading a review of Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice that isn’t disparaging the film left and right?” or “Am I understanding this correctly? This guy actually LIKED this movie?!” The answer is yes, you are.

But all joking aside; yes, I did enjoy this movie from the first viewing. I saw it multiple times in the theaters, four times in fact. I would’ve gone once or twice more had I had the time to do so. I bought the Ultimate Edition when it came out on home video and my appreciation and enjoyment of this film grew even more. The storyline and character development was fleshed out to be more fulfilling and robust with the Ultimate Edition. If this Ultimate Edition had been released in theaters, I believe it would have been better received.

I intend to break this film down into various parts from beginning to end, as well as to write a character analysis for each of the main players in the film, over the next few weeks. To discuss and analyze everything this movie event has to offer would be too long for one blog post. I will attempt to win over those that dislike, are ambivalent, and even hate this movie; as well as reinforce the greatness of this movie with those that do enjoy it. I’m looking forward to this experience as I delve deep into this film, which in my opinion could be considered the greatest movie of 2016. It’s only competition being Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

But at the end of the day, if you don’t like the film – that’s fine, if you do like the film -great! Either way, life will go on and Warner Bros. will continue to produce and release films from the DC Universe for those that enjoy them.

Listed below are the topics I will address and expound upon, I will activate links to the various topics and characters as I finish writing them.

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pt. 1 – Prologue

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pt. 2 – The Setup

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pt. 3 – Investigations

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pt. 4 – The Plan is Set in Motion

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pt. 5 – War

Bruce Wayne/Batman

Clark Kent/Kal-El/Superman

Diana Prince/Wonder Woman

Lex Luthor

Lois Lane

Alfred

Zod/Doomsday

Justice League Footage!

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One of the most exciting things to come out of San Diego Comic Con this past weekend was a trailer of sorts, of the upcoming Justice League movie. In this exclusive footage, we get to see Bruce Wayne visiting Arthur Curry (Aquaman) and Barry Allen (The Flash) and inviting them to join with him for an upcoming, unknown threat. We see Bruce and Diana Prince (Wonder Woman) planning out how to create a super team. We also see three of them (Bruce, Barry, and Diana)  together, along with Cyborg (Victor Stone) walking into an abandoned room.

Following on the heels of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, where we saw very small glimpses of Aquaman, Flash, and Cyborg, it was great to see them a little longer in this trailer and see more of their personalities as we watch them interact with Bruce. We also briefly see a Mother Box being buried in the ground. We saw two Mother Box’s in Dawn of Justice, one that essentially combined with Victor Stone and presumably turned him into Cyborg. The other was in Ultimate Edition, when we see Lex Luthor communing with Steppenwolf (a DC villain and Darkseid follower) and a Mother Box is present.

Justice League is set to be released November 17th 2017.

 

Smallville Season 7 Episode 18-Apocalypse

Apocalypse shows up what would happen if Kal-El hadn’t made it to Earth and the results of Lex Luthor’s quest for power. While reminiscent of It’s a Wonderful Life, this episode shows us some previews of Clark and Lois and the chemistry they will later have. We see how Clark will embrace his destiny after trying to put it off for some time. In this alternate timeline, we get to see Clark Kent in the press reporter outfit with glasses that we have come to know and love. Kara is rescued from Krypton and we get to see baby Kal-El once again. This episode is full of nostalgic moments, at least if you’re old enough to have seen the Superman movie from the late 70’s.

While I am not a fan of the episodes where Clark’s secret is revealed to a major character, but then by the end of the episode those characters no longer remember it, this one was well done and entertaining.

At the loft in the Kent barn, Clark Kent is reading Dr. Virgil Swan’s journal. Choe Sullivan comes in and Clark tells Chloe that he received another message from Kara Kent on Krypton. Clark needs to go back to Krypton to stop them from destroying him as a baby. Clark decides not to go back in time to Krypton. Chloe pleads with Clark to go back to Krypton, and puts the key into his hand. He says that this planet would be better off if he had never existed. They key emits a light and Clark wakes up in the barn. A teenager comes in and asks him what he is doing in there. The boy reveals that he is Clark Kent.

Clark goes into the farmhouse and sees pictures of Jonathan and Martha Kent with the new Clark Kent. The new Clark Kent tells him to get out of the home. Clark decides to check on his friends, and looks up their addresses to go talk with them. He tracks down Chloe Sullivan, and she doesn’t know him. He introduces himself to her and asks about Lana Lang. She doesn’t know where she is. Chloe is engaged and introduces him to her fiance. Clark tells her that he is happy for her.

Clark goes to the Daily Planet and runs into Jimmy Olsen. He enlists Jimmy to help track down Lana. Jimmy does a search for her, and discovers that Lana is now married with kids. Clark is happy for Lana, and turns to leave and bumps into Lois Lane. Clark catches her and she comments on how cute he is. She invites Clark to have a drink with him after work. Just then, the feds come in and arrest Lois for possessing government property. The leader of the group is Kara Kent, they take Lois off in handcuffs. Jimmy reveals that Lex Luthor is President. Clark tells him that he has to stop Lex. Jimmy is about to shred some evidence and tells Clark that Lois has him run errands for her. Jimmy tells Clark who to talk to to find out more information.

Clark goes to a bar to find this person, and sees the old Sheriff of Smallville, Sheriff Adams, but she doesn’t recognize him. She happens to be the person that Clark needs to get information from. He tells her that Lois was arrested, Adams doesn’t know this. Clark wants to know where she is, Adams tells him.

Black SUV’s pull up to a facility and bring Lois out. Clark disables the security guards and grabs Lois. She is twitterpated at being rescued by Clark.

They go to Jimmy’s place and Lois tells Clark that she has confidential information,a video, that would incriminate Lex Luthor and expose his lies. While in captivity, Lois overheard that they will be taken Lex to NORAD to hide out. Lois thinks that it’s the result of an impending nuclear threat. The video shows that Milton Fine is working with Lex. Clark realizes that because he wasn’t there to stop them, Lex and Fine are taking over the world. They devise a plan to stop them by getting the codes for the nuclear launch. Clark puts on a suit and tie and Lois gives him her press pass. Lois then puts the famous dark rimmed glasses on Clark.

At a press conference, Kara and Lex are discussing how while Lex is looking out for the greater good of humanity, Fine is behind the false information of a nuclear attack. Kara reveals a document that proves this. Lex burns it and tells her that Fine is following his orders. Lex pulls the guilt card on her and tells her that he is disappointed in her. Lex reminds her that his father found her ship by the Reeves Dam and protected her. Kara backs down and Fine comes in to take Lex to the press conference and they leave.

Clark confronts Kara and reveals himself to her. They talk about how to stop Lex and Fine. Kara is reluctant and says she is loyal to Lex. Clark tells her that Fine is Brainiac and that he must be stopped. Apparently Kara knows who Brainiac is in this alternate timeline and agrees to help Clark stop Brainiac. They go to Lex and tell him of Brainiac’s evil plan. Clark tells Lex that Fine is using him to gain access to the nuclear arsenal. Lex reveals that he knows this and that the world’s best and brightest are safe and that he will be their leader. Lex pulls a gun and shoots Clark with kryptonite bullets. He then shoots Kara too. Fine comes in and has Kara transported to medical care with kryptonite handcuffs. He brings in the briefcase and Lex gives the codes for the nuclear launch. Lex leaves for NORAD, and Fine stays to deal with Clark. They talk about how Fine will use Kara’s fortress to release General Zod from the Phantom Zone.

Fine shoots Clark in the head, but it reveals that this alternate reality has been put in motion by Jor-El. He tells Clark that he must stop Brainiac and go to Krypton. Clark is then back in the barn with Chloe. He tells her that he must go to Krypton to stop Brainiac.

On Krypton, Brainiac has baby Kal-El and is about to stab him. Kara steps in and tries to stop it. Brainiac throws her and tells her that she can’t stop him. Clark shows up and he and Fine struggle. Kara comes up behind him and stabs him with the knife. Clark grabs his babyself and puts him in the ship. Kara deals with Brainiac and the ship with Kal-El takes off. Clark asks about Brainiac and Kara tells him that she destroyed him. Kara and Clark escape through the portal back to Earth.

On Earth, Clark checks on Lana via telephone and she is getting worse. Clark and Kara talk about going back in time again to try and fix things again, they could save their planet. Clark tells her that they can’t change the past, they can only affect the future. Kara tells him that no matter what she will be there to support him.

Lex visits Clark in the barn and they talk about Lana Lang and her condition. Lex has had the best doctors check on Lana and they don’t have any idea on how to heal her. Clark tells Lex that he doesn’t know what can be done. Lex doesn’t believe him and tells him to come to him if there is anything he remembers.

At the Daily Planet, Clark is researching ways to help Lana. Lois comes in and questions what he is doing. He tells her and she doesn’t know what to say. Lois wants to help Clark, but doesn’t know what to say. Clark tells her that she is a good friend, and she invites him to go out for a drink with her.

At the Kent home, Kara is up and goes to get a drink of milk, but starts to have a major headache and falls to the floor in pain.

Smallville Season 7 Episode 17-Sleeper

Overall, I thought this was a boring episode, and that it was aptly titled -Sleeper.  But it did bring to light some good information for the ongoing story plot. Obviously the whereabouts of Kara and Brainiac are huge and what Brainiac’s evil plot to destroy Clark Kent is. While this nugget of information is huge and very interesting to find out, the rest of the episode is a foray into the relationship of Jimmy Olsen and Chloe Sullivan. While I find these characters interesting, as long as they don’t overstep their bounds for their roles in the series, I don’t find their relationship very interesting. It could be that I have a longing for Chloe and Clark to get together in a romantic relationship, which will probably never happen. But I think Jimmy is best relegated to a secondary or tertiary role in the series, as this attempt to have him as a primary role in the episode fell flat, for me anyways. The introduction of Special Agent Vanessa Weber and the introduction of her into the series was well done and I found her character and involvement more interesting than Jimmy Olsen in this episode. Sadly, I doubt we’ll be seeing Agent Weber very much if at all in the future.

The subplot of Lex Luthor opening the lock box in Zurich was a big deal and what the reveal for what was inside it is a big plot point too. However, this subplot took very little screen time and could’ve been easily added to any other episode. Continue reading “Smallville Season 7 Episode 17-Sleeper”

Smallville Season 7 Episode 16-Descent

Lex Luthor has been flirting with the dark side for some time now. He has been on the edge, but has always had a reason to not jump off. In this episode, titled Descent, we see the events that pushes him over that edge and causes him to descend into the darkness. He not only commits a physical act that has him embrace the darkness, but an internal struggle is going on inside him as well. These two events are the final acts that enable Lex’s journey to pure evil become complete.

We also see how the friendship of Lex and Clark Kent will never be repairable and how after six and a half seasons, there is no going back for them.  Continue reading “Smallville Season 7 Episode 16-Descent”

Smallville Season 7 Episode 15-Veritas

We learn more about Veritas and those that founded it. We learn that Lex Luthor is gaining memories lost due to his exposure to the meteor shower. We learn that Clark Kent still can’t fly. We learn that Virgil Swan, Lionel Luthor, Robert Queen and Edward Teague have known about Kryptonians and in a round about way, Clark Kent since he arrived in Smallville. We learn that there is a mysterious envelope locked in a Zurich vault that contains secret information that only the now deceased Virgil Swan knew about.

I was hoping that we’d actually get to see Clark fly, the other times we’ve seen ‘Clark’ fly don’t count as it wasn’t truly Clark. But, no it was only a tease to get our hopes up. We did get to see the dynamic duo of Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen work together for the first time as reporter and camera man. Hopefully we’ll see more of that in future episodes.  Continue reading “Smallville Season 7 Episode 15-Veritas”