Batman Vs. Superman & Suicide Squad

This year we see DC really go big in the movie world with Batman Vs. Superman and Suicide Squad, with Batman Vs. Superman in just a few weeks.

Now, I’m a confessed Marvel fan, but I do like the character of Batman and all of the pieces around him. Gotham and the characters that challenge Batman I think are really quite fascinating, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how DC pull this off.

Even though I am a huge Marvel fan, I’m not of the mindset to hate or belittle DC like a lot of people seem to like doing. Marvel have pioneered this Cinematic Universe idea and I’m quite excited to see what DC do (lets face it, if we’re getting all these films and they’re good then we as the fans win).

I’ve never been a huge fan of Superman; that said I did like Man Of Steel quite a lot. I’m a bit of a fan of Zach Snyder and there wasn’t much in Man Of Steel that I didn’t like. I thought Henry Cavill was very good as both Clark Kent and as Superman, but I thought most of the cast had were spot on.

Onto Batman though, I think the Dark Knight is becoming one of my favourite characters out there. Although I liked the Christopher Nolan Batman films I was never blown away by them, but I love the Tim Burton ones. I’m not worried about Ben Afflect as Batman/Bruce Wayne though; from what I’ve seen of him in the trailers I’m quietly optimistic about seeing the Bruce Wayne I want to see. As Batman I think he’s going to rock it, but it’s going to be as Bruce Wayne that I’m eager to see what he does with it. That was one of my major issues with Nolan and Christian Bale’s Batman. Bruce Wayne seemed more like an obnoxious playboy than a business leader, but with the advertising for the film I’ve seen I’m hoping we get a Bruce Wayne who, as far as the public is concerned, is quite happy in his life and is enjoying running Wayne Enterprises.

So, I am looking forward to seeing Batman Vs. Superman. I wasn’t really bothered about it until I saw the first trailer, and how it showed that Bruce Wayne was in Metropolis on the day that Superman and Zodd battled it out.

Suicide Squad though, that’s the one of these two films that I am really looking forward to. That first trailer really blew my mind away. It looked creepy and dark as hell, and the bare few seconds we see of Jared Leto’s Joker was genuinely terrifying. The whole trailer sold me though, there was nothing in it that caused me any concerns. Then the second trailer was released, and its got a totally different tone to that of the first trailer. This second trailer has given the film quite a humorous feel to it. So I’m kind of looking forward to seeing what the final film is like. With how the Joker, in particular looks, I think it is going to be quite dark, but I’m hoping it does have some decent humour in it because if it’s just dark then it could be quite a hard watch. So I’m hoping the director, writers, and the rest of those involved have managed to craft a film that has a good balance of the two.

I think both films are going to be good, but I’m really hoping to be blown away; and I’m hoping it gets me excited for the forthcoming Wonder Woman and Justice League films and what DC have got coming in the future.

 

Man Of Steal

A film which I had no real desire to see was Man Of Steel. I was never a huge fan of the Superman character as he was too perfect and I like my comic book characters to have a little more darkness to them, I’m a huge fan of Judge Dredd, The Punisher, Batman and Blade. I also like what Marvel have done with their characters for their movies which despite being generally positive expose the characters to the daemons and the flaws they have.

So I didn’t really take to the perfect Superman/Clark Kent character that we have seen in the movies. I will just point out that I have not read the comics at all and most of my knowledge comes through the movies and tv.

I could easily watch the Christopher Reeve Superman movies but I was never a fan enough to buy them for my collection. Bryan Singer’s Superman Returns is one that I did buy, but I had not seen it and I brought it more for the fact that Singer had directed it. I’m a fan of Bryan Singer’s work. His Superman Returns isn’t a bad film but it did not really change anything about the world it was set it and I think that is why I never really took to it much, it was still generally the same old Superman.

Now we come to Zach Snyder’s Man Of Steel. I initially saw this at the cinema and on first viewing did enjoy it, especially the beginning of the film but I didn’t fall in love with it. Owning it on Blu-Ray though is where I have truly discovered this movie. This is a whole new film, even though it tells the origins of Superman it did not once make me think of its predecessors. Yes, its telling me the origins of Superman but its doing it in a much more gritty and real way.

The story tells us the journey that Clark Kent goes through from a child struggling to cope with being able to do things that others cant and trying to discover who he is and where he comes from.

At the start of the film we see how his home planet is destroyed as he is still a new born baby and the circumstances that surround his escape from the planet he was born on.  This sequence alone is one of the best pieces of filmmaking I have seen in a long time. Russell Crowe plays Jor-El, Superman’s father, and he is really good here. He takes the character and puts a lot of depth and determination into it. What I really enjoyed seeing though was this different world with a different culture and the complexities of its social structure. If I had the money I would go to the Man Of Steel producers and have them make a film out of this prologue because it is a fascinating world they created here. Having not read the comics I don’t know if they ever looked at Krypton in any depth.

Then we see Clark Kent discovering who he is. I’d not seen anything with Henry Cavill in before this and I thought he played Superman and his alter ego of Clark Kent really well. He shows strength, humility, weakness and a sense of humour. The actors that play the younger Clark do a very believable job as well.

The rest of the film is mainly focused on seeing how the U.S. Government, in particular the military, react to Superman and the alien spaceship which has appeared in orbit demanding that Kal-El (his birth name) is handed back to them and the big epic fight to save the earth from these aliens.

A giant epic battle at the end of the film is to be expected with a movie like this. It’s the style of the movie and the fresh take of this character and world that finally made me a fan of Superman. In Man Of Steel we see what a struggle Clark Kent had as a child and the difficulties he faces when he has to step up and become the hero that we think of when we hear the word Superman.

Man Of Steel does have its flaws but none that are really stand out, aside from it being very loud at times. Trying to find a decent volumn when watching at home is difficult. Too low and the dialogue is difficult to hear and if you turn it up the sound effects can be a little too much.

Amy Adams as Lois Lane is very convincing, she shows a lot of determination, even to the point of irritating early on. Michael Shannon as General Zod eats the role up and dosent apologise for doing what he thinks is right. I thought he made Zod a very strong and determined character. I really enjoyed seeing Kevin Costner on the big screen again, he is very humble and clear thinking as Jonathan Kent. I wasn’t as convinced by Diane Lane as Martha Kent but she was okay.

We didn’t get enough of Lawrence Fishburne as Perry White but there was a lot of story that was put into this movie so I understand why he didn’t get much screen time. I’m hoping we see more of him in the next film. There’s a character called Colonel Nathan Hardy in the film, I don’t recall hearing his name mentioned but he plays a military, air force I think, officer who we see early on and throughout the film. He is played by Christopher Meloni and I really liked his character. He was very likable and was not just a random military officer. Antje Traue played Faora-Ul, Zod’s second in command and she was very good. Each time she was on the screen she all but stole it.

Zach Snyder led a production which lead to a very good movie, we don’t see the Superman we have seen before. The character feels a lot more real and I’m looking forward to seeing the sequel and where they take Superman and the world he lives in.