Cast: Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams
Director: Zack Snyder
At one point in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, the arch-villain Lex Luthor says that the battle between Batman and Superman will be the greatest gladiator fight in the history of the world. No such luck. Director Zack Snyder’s face-off between the superheroes is loud, joyless and profoundly dull. The narrative is so convoluted that it’s almost incoherent. It doesn’t grip you or make you invest in any of the characters. As our superheroes looked pensive and debated the future of mankind, I could only think—what’s for lunch?
It doesn't help that Snyder and his writers, Chris Terrio and David S. Goyer, are straining to create an epic that matters—and that’s with a capital M. So the narrative echoes current political tensions. The clash between the superheroes is meant to represent a larger clash of ideologies. But little of the subtexts come through. Instead, we get characters who always look serious. They don’t deliver dialogue. They make pronouncements. Batman asks Superman, “Do you bleed?”
As it turns out, he does. Lex, played by a hyper-ventilating Jesse Eisenberg declares: God is tribal. God takes sides. What does that even mean? Meanwhile, other folks are droning on about radioactive xeno minerals and the meta-human thesis. All of which is frequently interrupted by Batman’s bizarre dream sequences. And to top it all, there is an unintentionally comical mother angle that even a Bollywood writer would have rejected because it’s so melodramatic.
Under these trying circumstances, both actors do what they must—lead with their jaws. Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck are competent enough but they fight a losing battle. Two hundred and fifty million dollars and all the visuals that this money can buy can’t dress up this incredibly inept and creatively vacuous script.