Dawn of Justice? Still in the dark if you ask me. Quite literally, as Larry Fong’s photography was really gloomy, as if we were watching through 3D glasses; except we weren’t. By no means the worst thing about the film but certainly the most obvious.
It starts off well, as Man of Steel also did, this time showing the wanton destruction of Metropolis from the climax of the first film from the perspective of those innocents caught up in it all, including Bruce Wayne. This provides the initial antagonism between the two superheroes. However, it seems to be an eternity until something actually happens, but when we finally get to the final showdown, it’s all wham, bang, bash, explosion, (empty) buildings being destroyed. Basically , we’ve seen it all before; and it was hard to make out what was going on.
There was one good scene, about halfway through I guess. Batman gets out of the back of a lorry and proceeds to nobble some bad guys; but in a pure Snyder moment, it’s all done in one take as the camera slowly rotates around capturing all the brutal action. There are also a few beats from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, which is nice. But apart from that, everything is fairly pedestrian and does nothing special.
For all the hoo haa about Ben Affleck being Batman, he was good; but then Ben is a good actor. A far more astute man than me said at the time of Ben’s announcement as the Dark Knight: “We shouldn’t be worried about Ben Affleck being Batman, we should be more worried about Batman being in a Zack Snyder film”. Couldn’t agree more. Henry Cavill was still fine as Superman, I still don’t like Amy Adams as Lois; but for me the performance of the film was Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor. He bring the same energy that his Mark Zuckerberg from The Social Network had, and I think that worked great for Lex.
Effects from Weta Digital were great, as we expect these days in these kind of films and of course Hans Zimmer’s score was top notch. Perhaps his composition was a bit more under the radar this time apart from the Superman and Wonder Woman themes. Otherwise I thought this was a rather run-of-the-mill affair with nothing really to recommend it. Still the creative genius behind the Dark Knight trilogy (Christopher Nolan and David S. Goyer) can’t help this turgid series. But, you know, that’s just, like, my opinion man.