Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition
review by Bobby Blakey
There are few movies that have been hyped as much as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. With the new DC cinematic universe kicking off in 2013s Man of Steel that was met with mixed results. When they announced Batman v Superman the fans lost their minds, but then the criticism began with the casting of Ben Affleck as the Dark Knight. When the film hit theaters it was met with mixed results across the board. Now Warner Bors. is bringing the Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition that not only jacks the rating from PG-13 to R, but it also adds 30 more minutes to the film, but does it do anything to better the film or will it be filler that is just wasting time?
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice follows the aftermath of Superman’s fight against General Zod and Metropolis has been leveled making Superman the controversial figure in the world. While for many he is still an emblem of hope, a growing number of people consider him a threat to humanity, seeking justice for the chaos he has brought to Earth. As far as Bruce Wayne is concerned, Superman is clearly a danger to society. He fears for the future of the world with such a reckless power left ungoverned, and so he dons his mask and cape to right Superman's wrongs. However, a dark new threat arises in the form of a third man: one who has a power greater than either of them to endanger the world and cause total destruction! Going into a movie like this you already know it is near impossible for it to live up to the hype of the diehard super fans and while the film does have issues it did a pretty good job pulling it off. The big issue with the film comes in the first half as it makes a lot of cuts from scene to scene that felt rushed at times. H this edition of the film it adds in some of the things that actually help the film flow better and fill in moments of the story that make it feel more complete. There is little action in this first part of the film which works fine and is telling some compelling story, but every time you just got engaged it seemed to shift to something else now it works so much better. The side of the story that focuses on the threat of Superman within the government is necessary, but felt like they dragged it on for way too long with no real purpose in the end in the original and this doesn’t change a lot, but there are a few smaller moments that help you be more engaged in the intent of the story.
The cast all do a great job with Cavill stepping right back into the blue tights and brings the Man of Steel to life to perfection. Some will complain about the brooding of the character at times, but if you look at what the character has done and the weight it puts on him it makes total sense. This is still an early Superman that is finding himself and that which makes him become the character fans love. On the flip side you have the latest rendition of Batman with Affleck stepping into the role. He is easily one of if not the best Batman to date. Saying that, this is a different kind of Batman than we have seen in previous films with the character more aged and fed up. He is ready to snap and the connection to the previous film is the perfect catalyst to bring them together. There are a few other Easter Eggs that set the tone of what has already happened in his world and makes even more sense to where he is. Much like the Man of Steel they use a few flashbacks to tell Bruce Wayne’s journey to the bat without forcing an entire origin story down our throats again. Amy Adams does a fine job, but is kind of just there for no real reason and offers up little to the film much like a lot of the supporting players. New Alfred Jeremy Irons isn’t given all that much to do, but he is a more involved Alfred as opposed to the usual butler version we typically get. Gal Gadot finally brings Wonder Woman to the big screen with a bang with a silly story element, but effective use of the character and she embodies it well. There isn’t a whole lot more added to the main cast storyline, but there are some others that are brought back in that help to bring it all together in a smoother way. That doesn’t change the fact that the most debatable character here will still be Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor.
First the complaint about him having hair is just dumb as there have been numerous versions of the character over the years including a time when he had a strange red afro like hairdo so the hair issue is a waste of time. His obvious insane nature works the majority of the time making him a great villain, but at times is a bit too over the top and silly making him almost feel like he is in a different movie. Overall he delivers and the ending to his arc in the film sets up for what could be a cool version for future films. For all the debates in the film there is no denying that it kicks some major butt when the fight of the century finally kicks off. Director Zack Snyder took great inspiration from Frank Miller’s iconic Dark Knight Returns and brought it to amazing life. There are visuals and moments that jumped right off the page to perfection. To say that their fight was epic is an understatement. It delivered everything you could want and was literally just the beginning of the epic finally of the film. As we all know from the trailers Wonder Woman gets in on the action and while she doesn’t all that much screen time, her entrance and contribution to the battle is pretty awesome.
Before you see it know that many more pieces of city are destroyed, but listen closely as they say all the people were evacuated so all the innocent lives argument is off the table. Most know there are some other cameos in the film as well, but without spoiling anything they are there and while brief are well placed without feeling forced. The biggest misstep of them all is that too much was revealed in the trailer that would have made for some great twists so if you have avoided it continue to do so. There will no doubt be arguments over this film both good and bad, but DC has stepped up their game and delivered an epic chapter in their new cinematic universe that is firmly cemented and ready to move forward. While it will be hard to get anyone that have expressed their hate already to revisit the film, but this latest cut is a way better film that fleshes out some important moments as well as generic filler that just makes it flow better.
In addition to the film this Blu-ray features the theatrical version on Blu-ray and DVD as well as numerous bonus featurettes that take you behind the curtain of not only bringing this film and characters to life, but also crafting their new DC Cinematic Universe. Witness a newer and better version of DC’s trinity when Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition comes to Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD on July 19th as well as Digital HD available now from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.