Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Review

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Review

It’s a Set-Up!

By Aiden Harmitt-Williams

The Dark Knight Returns. Arguably one of the best comic book stories every written, especially when it comes to Batman or Superman. This seemed to be the template leading up to Batman v Superman’s release. Batman’s suit(s) and build were ripped from the pages of the aforementioned book, and the title itself told fans what to expect.

I’m coming from the perspective of an avid comic book reader who happens to also enjoy comic book films. Seeing as BvS is also a comic book film, I’m going to review it with the mind-set that it is based on a solid foundation of rules and lore that should respectfully be followed. I’m also not going to go into too much detail so I don’t ruin anything for future viewers.

So let’s begin.

This was the second showing at my local cinema, I was sitting next to a guy who offered me a Twix bar, and my first thought was, I hope that this Twix isn’t better than this film. It didn’t start off well. For the first ten minutes of the film the projection was out of focus. So it was like watching the film through the eyes of someone who really needed glasses but refused to put them on. Then it was fixed, and we began from the beginning. It was like the transition from potato to 4K. Admittedly the premise was set up well, though I had already seen it in the trailer. Then from there it just got random.

It’s like the writers had an idea, and thought, “Now how can we link every major character to this idea?” went from there and left that same idea in the middle of the story. This is probably because there is a hell of a lot going on. As the second film in this new DC Cinematic Universe behind Man of Steel it shouldn’t have had this much weight on it to set up the entirety of the following movies, but I understand that Warner Brothers are trying to play catch up to Disney and Marvel. Small(er) steps would have been better.

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The problem with the plot isn’t that it’s convoluted. There are a number of random plot points that are obviously thrown in to set up things for the future, but its done in a way that breaks up the main narrative and adds literally nothing to the story. Nothing at all. Literally.

Forgive me for comparing this to Deadpool but bear with me. Deadpool was a film that thought was maybe a bit too small in scale, but it benefited from that, especially since a sequel can become bigger and better than its predecessor. BvS is guilty of doing too much. While it is fun to see some of these strange scenarios through, they didn’t offer anything.

What they did get right were the visuals however. Zack Snyder is most notably known for 300, Watchmen and Man of Steel which are striking visually and with the except of Man of Steel have a comic book feel. With this film though it gets a bit grey at times. It tries to be dark and brooding a lot of the time and can be tonally awkward. Batman (Ben Affleck) is pulled off well and is accurately reminiscent of TDKR. If his first proper scene is what the future Batman film may be like, then I look forward to it. SPOILER ALERT But Batman is blatantly killing people? Come on, I know he’s older and angry but he doesn’t compromise his morals. SPOILER END.

Superman (Henry Cavill) is Superman and we all know how that is. Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) feels tacked on and doesn’t really have an identity except to have the Justice League trinity together, but Gadot does her as much justice as she can. The one thing that they kind of managed to implement was the political and moral side to the destruction Superman leaves in his wake, though it doesn’t affect Batman in the slightest. Lex Luthor comes off more like The Riddler than the calm, composed genius he is (ding, ding, ding). But that’s neither here nor there.

Doomsday happens to be the biggest farce of the whole movie. Once you watch it (and you know who Doomsday is) you’ll see why. He’s The Incredible Hulk’s Abomination except not as good. He doesn’t even talk.

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When I say that this movie is a set-up, I mean in terms of narrative. It’s an overlong introduction to the dawn of the Justice League (pun intended) and it deserved more attention to detail than it got. Snyder has said that there is supposed to be an Ultimate Cut with over half an hour of footage, and maybe that will make it better than the theatrical version. I can only hope. By the end I knew the answer to whether the Twix was better, and It wasn’t. But at least it was worth it.

P.S. There is no after credit scene. Go home.

4.9/10.0

Nautilus

There is no escape.

There is no escape 
and I am the one who has trapped myself here. 
I am in too deep, and if I try to crack the shell —
I will die. 
I will drown in the seas that surround me.
Though this ship cuts through the meat under Earth’s skin with ease,
without it I am little more than an insignificant atom
ready to join the congregation of the others 
who had been ceased in the fires of death. 
These narrows halls are filled with a comfort 
all my own because all my own is all I have,
forever alone trapped in this zone beneath the ocean.
My aquatic home away from my home,
never have I let anyone be shown where my lost time has gone. 
Crafting this beast. This prison, this cave
reducing my rights at the same time of increase 
waiving my claims to see the sun 
or to see my son whom I’ve left on the earth of Earth. 
I’ve left behind the notions of who I was capable of becoming,
left it in the rear view of this metal whale 
my guile and cunning for the lifestyle of a recluse
no longer a cannon loose, 
more like the pirate I was supposed to be 
after hanging for hours in the loop of a noose.
Still. Watching this world go by 
fish instead of birds flying in my blue sky lost, 
but found at the bottom. Of the sea. 

The Horns of the Bull

The horns of the bull have manifested themselves within me. 
I fear that soon I shall be completely taken over
if another night of fruitless heat burns like this. 
Steam is emitted from my temple,
as it is ransacked by thoughts of a 
nameless lover,
a thief of emotions and the giver of a throbbing
all over the body until these vibrations act as one,
akin to a convulsion.
But I am a man. 
This lover is no friend of mine. 
Erecting pillars in my home of Pisa,
each piece of me stolen, 
replacing my peace with a piece of her pull. 
Her gravity too strong to ignore
I scratch and scrape along the floor while I’m powerless 
to stop the inevitable swallowing of my soul.
At first I was whole —
then she emptied me of myself,
leaving me with nothing but my now wilted thoughts
thinking to myself what would the courts of heaven say about this. 
Too often my temple is desecrated,
and I am never to rebuild —
for I do not have the will, nor the skill 
to refute her wicked eloquence 
wanting no recompense because I needed relief.
And I received it in full.
Until the next time the show themselves.
The horns of the bull.
  

Ai-Photos

By Aiden Harmitt-Williams

So this is the beginning of the Ai-Photos (Love-Photos) section. Here I’ll be uploading various projects I’ve undergone pertaining to photography and will act as my online photography portfolio. Feel free to comment on any future posts and discuss the projects, ask any questions as well as offering up any ideas, constructive criticism or help with anything.

Welcome!

The Vampire

You left me exposed. 
Naked in the cold streets
laying in my sheets 
after we did what we did that night of the blue moon. 
You left me exposed. 
My guards were up but you pushed aside my forearms
with your soft hands and your eloquent touch
that spoke more than the tongues of 1000 men.
See, it was all just too much. 
You left me scarred, beaten and bloody. 
Scarred where your fingertips dug into my back
which my strength gave you power to pierce.
Beaten by the promises you made 
coaxing me to come from behind my comfortable palisade
and bloody where your eyes broke through the steel of my heart and left it leaking.
Like it didn’t matter. 
Like it wasn’t matter but pixels in a game. 
Like after you’d had your fun I would have no name.
I even gave you pieces of it to fill your own.
You filled your own, took my soul home with you
and left my skin empty.
But I still looked back to you.
I looked back at whatever we had so many times
my empty self was filled with salt.
But every time we kissed you said I was
flavourless. 
Though I noticed that you favoured me less and less every day 
I still try to press my lips against yours to bring back 
some sort of sensation in you,
force you to make another evaluation on what I could be,
of what we could be.
All for naught. 
Manners were taught less than sense it seems
as she took advantage of my weakness
massaging her ego with oils and creams 
I could not afford, selling my soul for another night in her sheets.
I’ll never escape. 
She’s my queen.
So again I willingly let her bite into my nape. 

Moon

A thief in the night

of not objects but light
has its way with the tides
even if it hides 
behind the clouds.
Home to the darkness but still it helps
to shroud the eyes of its over bearing power,
in order for us to see
the world in a new perspective,
as a new collective 
akin to a white face
in a dark place. 

Crackers and Scars

I made a right, 

then a left and another right. 
Blood in my sweat I am far from free yet. 
Cuts above my eyes from the thorns like I’m their saviour.
A saviour on the run, 
favoured under the sun.
Freedom is my portion, 
but the crackers’ nearby I can feel it. 
Craters in my back
where the stars fell before my eyes,
darkness in its purest form clouds over my highs. 
Over again the sound resounds in my dreams,
echoing through the air while I stifle my screams
and numb the pain with visions of
back when I was in Africa —
with my woman on my side 
and my child above her hide. 
Now I am forced to pander to massa not my master.
The sound of the whip cracking in the night sky
only makes my feet move faster. 
I cannot bear to be on my knees again knowing it shall not be in the presence of the pastor. 
If I had the weapons they used I would find the wife of the master and I would blast her.
Force him to prick his fingers in the fields of cotton trying to fill a quota in this arduous task or,
watch while we rape his defenceless sisters or,
take their children and claim them as our own or,
sell them like cattle forever ready for the slaughter or,
take them from their homes back to Africa and force them to chew on the religion of our gods or,
pull their mother tongue from out of their mouths or,
sit atop thrones of white men while we nary have to bend our backs to pick up the very whip we’ll use to put cracks in their backs and scars on their hearts for a genocide long forgotten, and a pilferage of an entire race that will always be remembered like the remnants of the embers that were used to brand us all niggers.
Or I could keep running, 
and hope that the blackness of my skin and my cunning
will aid me throughout the night 
to further myself from that uncomfortable sight
where our backs are their canvas 
which they choose to stain
with their pious justification, 
feeling no pain for there have been no ramifications
for we fight against each other —
and while we say we love ourselves 
hypocrisy reigns deep for like crabs in a barrel
we only want to see our product left upon shelves
for the acceptance of a people that will never be ours.
We rarely remember when we hung like strange fruit for hours.
Running from crackers and hiding our scars. 
Living behind masks, 
dying behind bars.
If only we could go back to the red sanded planet of Mars 
and reclaim our place among the stars.