If you’ve read my blog before, then you know I’m a huge comic book fan. I’m especially happy the entire genre is in the midst of a renaissance in movie theaters across the globe. With the massive success of Nolan’s Batman Trilogy, Fox’s X-men films (LOVED DEADPOOL), and anything Marvel one has to ask, when will the bubble burst? When will superhero films go the way of the old cowboy serials, as Steven Spielberg predicted last year? Answer: March 26, 2016 the day Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice is released. But why? You may ask. Aren’t’ Superman and Batman the biggest superheroes of all time? YES AND THIS MAY BE THE DOWNFALL OF COMIC BOOK FILMS. Here’s why:
1. It’ s Too Damn Big: It’s no secret DC is playing catch up to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe when it comes to the box office. The current success Disney is having comes from a big gamble Marvel took back in 2008 on a character little knew or cared about outside of the comic shops and arcades: Iron Man. Marvel has taken the time to build a solid foundation for their films so when the Avengers assembled on screen for the first time in 2012, people had a reason to care. After a “eh” Man of Steel, DC is rolling the dice by throwing the two biggest properties in comic book history and throwing in characters movie goers haven’t been formally introduced to yet i.e. Wonder Woman, Flash , Aquaman, Cyborg, and Doomsday. With little or no introduction to these new characters, the Justice League may feel more like the “Just Us” League.
2. Too Much Info
: Call me crazy but I like to be surprised by my films. After seeing the trailers , teasers, and commercials I feel as if I may know the plot of the film already. If I’m correct, it’s all too familiar. Heroes meet for the first time and have a misunderstanding. They start fighting until they realize they’re actually working on the same side (which will probably be pointed out by Wonder Woman) or being manipulated by a common enemy (in this case Luthor). They join forces to defeat the enemy just as they’ve amassed a huge amount of power – in this case Doomsday. A big evil power is teased at the end, in this case Darkseid. Speaking of which:
3. Doomsday: I love the idea of Zod becoming Doomsday, it makes sense and works well into Luthors’ persona as a bit of a mad scientist. I would have loved if they kept the creature’s involvement under wraps, it would have been a nice little surprise. Instead the beast who dismantled the DC heros before single handedly killing off Superman in 1994 looks a lot like the Golgotha from the Kevin Smith film Dogma. Hopefully this won’t be the characters final form or film.
LAST BUT NOT LEAST…..ZACK SNYDER
Best way I can say this: I’m not a fan. I feel as if he cannot make a film based on original source material. Dawn of the Dead was great but it was based on a decades old zombie film. 300 was amazing but it seemed as if he had a copy of Frank Miller’s epic comic with him and tried to copy as much as he could. Although he did also try to copy Watchmen shot for panel, it failed to capture the essence of the story and made me realize Alan Moore was 100% correct when he said, why would you want to adapt a story that is perfect as is? His film Sucker Punch, although original, comes off as a sloppy video game rather than a film. Not a video game you would buy either, one you would rent from Blockbuster back in the day and beat in a matter of hours.
Snyder also relies too heavily on special effects. I understand in the days of talking trees and characters who can regenerate on command cgi is a necessity but when over done, it can take a viewer completely out of the film. This was the case for me in Man of Steel when Superman was fighting the Kryptonians. I felt as though I was watching a round of Mortal Kombat rather than a film. It took me right out of it.
Hopefully I’m wrong. I sincerely want this film to be great. Superman in such an iconic character, its a shame he hasn’t really had a great film since Christopher Reeves. Plus if a film of this magnitude fails, it will surely sink the genre. Here’s hoping I’m 100% wrong.
Philip A. Maenza aka “Philtastic Phil” is an internet entrepreneur and consumer behavior professional whose interests include art, film, music, stand up comedy, fitness, and comic books. Phil is also a dedicated community volunteer and always open to connecting with like minded optimists.