Batman

What do you write about during the summer when you don’t really do a whole lot?  The past 6 weeks for example, have been full of kid swim lessons, a wedding of people you’ve never heard of, a bachelor party for which I will not write about… and… that’s about it.  The previous six weeks of summer… not a whole lot happened there either.

I saw Captain America: Civil War.  It was good.  What do you want me to say?  It was pretty much what the previews showed.  If you saw the previews, you saw 90% of the important parts of the movie.  The end was a little bit different than I expected, but I had some problems with the ending.  Like what happens if Iron Man doesn’t go after Captain America and The Winter Soldier?  The whole premise of the movie hinges on that one event happening.  If it doesn’t?  Then they just sit around staring at each other.  Super fun movie.  If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then you didn’t see the movie.  If you saw the movie, you get it.

So over the past few days, I saw two different Batman movies.  I finally saw Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice.  I also so Batman: The Killing Joke.  I’m not sure which was more surprising.  That I didn’t hate BVS as much as I thought I would, or that I didn’t like TKJ as much as I thought I would.

I know I am way behind the curve here on Batman V. Superman.  But it just looked terrible.  So I waited till it was on DVD to watch it.  I couldn’t justify spending ticket prices on this movie.  It wasn’t as bad as I assumed it would be.  It’s still not good.  The film is two and a half damn hours.  The first hour or so is just them standing around meeting each other.  LET’S GO!!!  I get it, gotta set up the trinity and all that.  But geezus, row across lake point!!  Move it along!  The worst part of the movie was the casting of Jesse Eisenberg.  I am not a huge fan to start with, but I would like to see who didn’t get the role.  A dog?  Phil?  There had to be someone better.  And maybe he will be better in Justice League.  Who knows.  But he was dreadful.

The thing I find most interesting about BVS happened in the aftermath of the film.  It was such a critical disaster that Warner Bros. decided to move people around on Justice League.  Ben Affleck is now an executive producer.  The obvious choice to make is the one that they refuse to actually make.  The reason BVS was so terrible, and the reason Justice League is going to suck beyond belief, is Zack Snyder.  The director needs to go.  But WB probably has too much money invested in him to replace him at this point.  Chicken sh*ts.  Snyder ruined this movie.  If WB and DC wonder why they are so far behind Marvel in their cinematic universe, they need to look no further than Snyder.

I was so excited to see The Killing Joke.  And it was such a letdown.  The second half of the movie is great.  It is very true to the graphic novel on which it is based.  I didn’t know what to expect, really.  I had heard rumors about a scene between Batman and Batgirl.  The internet went ape sh*t.  Apparently people have a huge problem with the two of them… being intimate.  I get that there is a huge age difference, and she was involved with Robin at one point in history.  But whatever, it didn’t bother me that much.  It was the aftermath that bugged me.  They turned her into this whiny, damsel in distress character that just wasn’t Batgirl for me.  To be fair, I haven’t read a lot of Batgirl books, so I am not as familiar with her history as others, and maybe this is true to her.  It just didn’t work for me.  Once they switched to the Batman/Joker dynamic, the movie got a lot better.  If you’re a fan of this particular book, it is worth checking out.  Just don’t have high expectations.

Superman vs. Batman

Over the weekend at the San Diego Comic Con, Zack Snyder, director of the less than enjoyable Man of Steel, announced that the sequel will be Superman joining forces with The Caped Crusader, Batman.  Nothing has been set in stone, and basically that was all the announcement was.  No plot, no casting announcements, just the main characters.  Which left me perplexed and excited at the same time.

On the one hand, I will absolutely go see a Superman sequel, even though I didn’t particularly love the first one.  I am a sucker for superhero movies.  Also, I loved The Dark Knight trilogy.  And Chris Nolan was involved with Man of Steel.  So there’s that.

On the other hand, there are lots of questions that need to be answered.  Who will be cast as Batman?  Christian Bale, who was so great in the cape and cowl, has shot down all rumors that he will play Batman again.  So that’s out.

So who is next on the list?  I haven’t seen or really looked at any rumors.  But the big question to me is, where does Snyder take the movie?  Henry Cavill’s Superman is still in his infant stage.  But he is still 30 years old.  The rumor that has been out there since The Dark Knight Returns, is that Joseph Gordon-Levitt would take over the Batcave.  He’s actually 32.  Which I didn’t believe.  I think he is really good and is becoming one of my favorite actors, but come on, the guy looks 12.  I just don’t know how he can play Batman.  I would rather see him as Nightwing (not Robin) in a Justice League movie, or even Terry McGinnis in a Batman Beyond movie.  But he’s probably too old to play a teenager, even with his boyish looks.

That’s my other question.  Do you have Batman as an entry level superhero?  Someone towards the beginning of his career like in Batman Begins?  Or more of a battered, time tested vigilante at the end of the trilogy?  My guess is since they will be recasting, they will basically be rebooting the Batman franchise with the new actor and have a fresh start.

I guess we have nothing to do but sit and wait for a couple years.  I think this actually could be a good idea.  Here’s my problem with superhero movies going forward.  I have no problem with new actors taking over these characters.  I am just going to get tired with seeing origin stories every three or four movies.  This will obviously lead into a JLA movie, which I think is moving too fast.  I’d prefer if they took the Marvel approach, but perhaps Wonder Woman and Flash couldn’t hold their own movies, but I’m almost positive they could.