Early screening of Justice League deem it 'unwatchable'

Kyrian007

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Even after hearing that JL is "unwatchable" ever since SDCC I have actually had a little hope for the future of the DCEU. I have been nothing but "reboot please" ever since I left the theater having been tortured sitting through the awful Man of Steel. I haven't actually paid money to watch a DC movie since. But, now that they have scrapped whatever they were doing for the Flash movie and have replaced it with Flashpoint... they finally may be using their soft reboot. I was advocating for Crisis on Infinite Earths, but Flashpoint works as well. As long as it resets the timeline and erases the events of Man of Steel, Suicide Squad, and BvS... there may be hope yet. It gives them the chance to purge the Snyderverse, do some much needed recasting, and even keep the one or two things they got close to right. And they can make the deep changes to the story needed to correct how badly they've gotten the characters so wrong. With Flashpoint, maybe they can turn it around.
 

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immortalfrieza said:
Hawk of Battle said:
I did hear the other day that Henry Cavill has been called back in to do reshoots, but he's currently working on the new Mission Impossible movie where he has grown out a mustache for the role, and he has been told not to shave it off because they're still filming. So he's had to do all his Superman reshoots with a mustache and they now have to digitally remove it in post and it's gona cost a fortune.

I find this hilarious.
What I don't get is why they don't just have Cavill shave the mustache off and just have him put on a fake mustache, it's not like they can't afford to have some decent makeup, if it was good enough nobody would notice the difference, and it would be WAY cheaper than digitally removing the real mustache over at Justice League.
It's 2 different movie studios doing two different movies. Justice League is WB, Mission Impossible is Paramount, the mustache is for Mission Impossible.

Why would Paramount inconvenience themselves and have extra make-up time and costs just to let Henry Cavill shave his mustache so that he can better play Superman in a different movie by a different studio which will not make Paramount any money?
 

Hawki

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Gethsemani said:
The Dark Knight trilogy is good for all those reasons you mentioned and the fact that the Nolan's absolutely knew where they were going with their stories. The trilogy is a character study of Bruce Wayne and the toll it takes to be the Batman and the sacrifices it requires. What the Dark Knight movies do and the MCU does that the DCEU so far fails at is giving enough time for set-up. Batman Begins spends a lot of time with setting up Wayne's struggles to become Batman and we are an hour into the movie before he even puts on the suit.
How long does it take in MoS and WW for the characters to wear their suits? I'd wager a similar amount of time.

Gethsemani said:
The MCU, notably were 5 movies in before the Avengers, were we finally got to see the Avengers together. In the DCEU we got BvS as the second film, which then had to quintuple duty for setting up Batman as a character, setting up Lex as an antagonist, setting up Superman's growth from MoS and finally setting up the conflict at the heart of the title.

The DCEU probably doesn't lack direction, but the direction seems to be too pre-occupied with darkness and getting to the "good bits" of playing characters of one another. For Justice League the only character in there that has gotten its' own movie will be Wonder Woman (and Superman, since he'll return for sure), which means that instead of having 6 well introduced heroes, we'll have 2 (3 with supes) that are introduced and three or so that JL has to introduce us to, while setting up its' antagonist and plot. That's a lot of work for one movie.
BvS suffers from a bloat in worldbuilding, but I don't buy the idea that you need pre-existing films for an ensemble piece. If you want an MCU example, take Guardians - it sets up a crew of five, and all receive some degree of characterization. That number increases in films like Star Trek 2009 (seven; Kirk and co. each get at least one moment to shine) or nine (Fellowship of the Ring). Looking at the Avengers, alright, fine, every one of the titular characters had appeared in at least one film. That isn't enough to make it a good film in my eyes, since it's plagued by a cliche script, with cliche characters going up against a cliche villain.

I don't have much hope for Justice League, but the lack of pre-existing films isn't an issue in of itself for me.

DrownedAmmet said:
I think the "Dark" is a problem because they made "all" their movies dark, so when Batman met Superman they were practically the same person
Had they gave their superman movies a bit lighter tone they could have brought in Batman as an interesting foil. They are both on the same "side" but superman could have believed in truth justice and the American way, and batman could have brought up the point that the only way to stop crime is to brand pedophiles for murder or something
That's a fault with BvS. I disagree it's a fault with MoS or SS. And Wonder Woman isn't a dark film by any means. I mean, okay, it treats WWI with more gravitas than Captain America treats WWII, but that's a very low bar to surpass.

Basement Cat said:
I don't get the Joss Whedon hate. One thing WW taught Warner Bros was that "lighter" films than Snyder's were better received by a broader audience.
Okay, fine, but is this what we're lowering expectations to? Wonder Woman is arguably the best DCEU movie (for me it is at least), but it's also the 'safest.' I agree that execution trumps conception, but great, and even simply good films are able to do both.

At the end of the day, the DCEU and MCU have the opposite problems. The DCEU has produced flawed films, but conceptually interesting ones. The MCU has produced more solid, but conceptually vapid films, with the exception of Iron Man 3, and people loathed it for it. At this point in time, I can't see the MCU breaking out of its comfort zone of giving undemanding popcorn entertainment. The DCEU had the potential to do that (and I've seen films of this genre do such a thing with stuff like The Dark Knight and Logan), but if that's what audiences and producers are after, then I guess that possibility's gone up in smoke.

Basement Cat said:
And given that this is a Snyder movie "lightening things up" could simply mean stopping it from being an Emo "Life is pain--slash your wrists" flick. That doesn't directly mean Joss is turning it into "My Little Pony". :D
Snark aside, I could see Whedon directing MLP - let him loose on the Mane 6, and let the character dynamic speak for itself.
maninahat said:
For better or for worse, DC movies have chosen to be far more self-serious in tone, and whilst that looks terrible in movies like BvS, it's also part of the reason Wonder Woman was so good
Wonder Woman was "serious?"

I mean, okay, it took its subject matter more seriously than its contemporaries, but like I've said, that's a low bar to surpass.

maninahat said:
no one else is making sincere, straight faced superheroes anymore, especially now that X-men has finally dried up.
Um, Logan?

Yeah, I know, Deadpool 2 is coming up and my heart weeps at the prospect of that piece of garbage getting a sequel, but still, credit where credit is due - Logan was damn good. Best X-Men film for me personally, and at this time of writing, the #5 film I've seen in cinemas this year.

Darth Rosenberg said:
I can only see this becoming a black mark on his career.
As opposed to Titan A.E., Alien: Resurrection, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, etc.

Whedon isn't infalliable.

Darth Rosenberg said:
Er, no. Favreau's Iron Man and RDJ set the tone for the MCU - not Joss Whedon.
I can't agree there. Iron Man is relatively light-hearted, but it does at least take itself seriously. It helps that Tony has an actual character arc, and Stane, while not the most brilliant of villains, is at least a villain with some menace and actual motivations. In contrast to...

Darth Rosenberg said:
Two Iron Man's, a Thor, and a [brilliantly] pulpy Captain America helped solidify precisely what the MCU was about.
Undemanding popcorn entertainment with shallow good guys fighting shallow bad guys?

"Brilliant" is also the last word I'd use to describe Captain America, but whatever.

Darth Rosenberg said:
And after The Avengers we had The Winter Soldier, whose tone was markedly darker and more serious than The Avengers or anything before it. Ditto Civil War.
How the heck was Civil War dark?

I mean, okay, at the very, VERY least, you could say that Civil War has some level of analogy to contemporary issues with the debate of security vs. freedom and the nature of oversight, but they're such broad strokes and so academic to the overall product, I can barely give it credit for it. I mean, the scene everyone remembers from that film is the airport fight scene, which, to quote another piece of work, is "a tale, told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." Heck, at least the fight between Tony and Steve at the end has some level of emotional gravitas.

And okay, fine, a film doesn't need to have some kind of underlying theme or message to be good, but if Phase 1 sets the standard for the MCU, then it's little wonder why there's so few MCU films I can consider "good," considering how vapid the characters are (especially the villains).
 

Gethsemani_v1legacy

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Hawki said:
How long does it take in MoS and WW for the characters to wear their suits? I'd wager a similar amount of time.
Haven't clocked them, but that sounds about right. My point was aimed at BvS and how hastily and sketchily Batman gets introduced, set up and then set off so he can drive the plot of the titular showdown with Superman.

Hawki said:
BvS suffers from a bloat in worldbuilding, but I don't buy the idea that you need pre-existing films for an ensemble piece. If you want an MCU example, take Guardians - it sets up a crew of five, and all receive some degree of characterization. That number increases in films like Star Trek 2009 (seven; Kirk and co. each get at least one moment to shine) or nine (Fellowship of the Ring). Looking at the Avengers, alright, fine, every one of the titular characters had appeared in at least one film. That isn't enough to make it a good film in my eyes, since it's plagued by a cliche script, with cliche characters going up against a cliche villain.

I don't have much hope for Justice League, but the lack of pre-existing films isn't an issue in of itself for me.
It isn't, and I think I might have put forth my argument rather poorly. The problem with BvS, SS and what is likely to happen to JL is that the DCEU wants to reach the same level of character interaction and conflict that Avengers had. Avengers had the luxury of having six out of seven characters set up (Black Widow having been characterized in Iron Man 1/2 and Hawkeye being the only real newcomer) going in, so it could immediately start setting up the tension and most of Avengers is driven by the tension of those six (not counting brainwashed-Hawkeye) characters trying to work together. As the cherry on top the main villain (Loki) had already been set-up by Thor so he needed no introduction either. BvS tried to do the same, but since Batman and Luthor were new to the franchise they both needed establishing and the movie crammed Batman's establishing piece, the conflict with Luthor and the Supes/Bat showdown into one movie.

The deal with GotG is that the characterization is very, very sweeping and there's very little inter-personal drama. Groot is groot, Rocket is a sociopathic raccoon with a heart of Gold, Star Lord is a laid back dude, Gamorra is an emotionally distant killer with a troubled past and Dax is the comic relief powerhouse. GotG runs on cliches to cut down its' need for establishing scenes, which saves it a tremendous amount of time. BvS didn't want to do that and JL seems to try for deeper characters too, which you just can't fit into a ensemble piece where 3 or 4 people must try to hug the spotlight while the plot drives forward and the big bad is established too. To make that work you need to go the Star Trek/Suicide Squad way and establish a pair of main characters (Spock/Kirk and Deadshot/Harley) and leave the rest of the ensemble as sidekicks. Which doesn't seem to be the route JL wants to take either.

To try and put all this rambling into something concise: The DCEU runners seems to want the same meaningful character interactions that the MCU has, where the ensemble films are largely driven by the conflicts in the group. At the same time the DCEU runners seem unwilling to properly establish their cast and get straight to the "cool stuff". As you said, the lack of pre-existing films doesn't have to be a problem, if the DCEU runners are ready to sideline Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman in favor of Bats, WW and Supes. That way JL can deliver an evenly paced story. But since it seems as if they want Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman to get proper introductions and characterizations, there's a very real risk that JL will end up with the same kind of plodding bloat that plagued BvS and SS. Simply because the showrunners wants to do too much with not enough time.
 

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Natemans said:
But the DCEU films have mostly been dark in aesthetic and content. The only exceptions being Suicide Squad and WW. The MCU doesn't really and utilizes it well plus they did a really well-handled job of Steve and Tony's friendship.
So out of 4 films so far released in the DCEU 50% count as "most".
 

Hawki

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Gethsemani said:
The deal with GotG is that the characterization is very, very sweeping and there's very little inter-personal drama. Groot is groot, Rocket is a sociopathic raccoon with a heart of Gold, Star Lord is a laid back dude, Gamorra is an emotionally distant killer with a troubled past and Dax is the comic relief powerhouse. GotG runs on cliches to cut down its' need for establishing scenes, which saves it a tremendous amount of time.
I agree with that, but The Avengers is equally reliant on archtypes and cliches to propel its plot. If anything, they're practically the same movie as far as plot beats go - McGuffin is fought over, heroes meet and fight, heroes fail to stop badguys and learn how to work at a team, cue major city battle, heroes save city from bad guy.

If anything, it might explain why I like Guardians slightly more, in that the heroes have more discernable arcs and have to be built up within the scope of the movie itself, whereas in Avengers, I don't think any of the characters can really be said to have an arc per se - maybe Banner, but that's about it.
 

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Hawki said:
I agree with that, but The Avengers is equally reliant on archtypes and cliches to propel its plot. If anything, they're practically the same movie as far as plot beats go - McGuffin is fought over, heroes meet and fight, heroes fail to stop badguys and learn how to work at a team, cue major city battle, heroes save city from bad guy.

If anything, it might explain why I like Guardians slightly more, in that the heroes have more discernable arcs and have to be built up within the scope of the movie itself, whereas in Avengers, I don't think any of the characters can really be said to have an arc per se - maybe Banner, but that's about it.
Yup. This is really my point about the need for establishing movies in a proper ensemble movie. If you've watched Iron Man 1/2, Hulk, Thor and Captain America you know these characters going in and you can see that they still operate on the personalities established in those movies. They don't get much establishing or arc on their own (Black Widow and Banner being the ones who get that) since the movie is about their team dynamic. Watched on its' own it works as a quick thrill action movie, but watched in sequence with the other movies you can see how the dynamic is based in established personalities, which gives an added depth.

DCEU seems to be going for that depth, but are not ready to put in the effort needed to make it work. Which is why BvS becomes bloated and probably is why JL keeps getting slammed for pacing issues at pre-screenings. You don't have to like the MCU in any way, but it has worked to earn its pathos by establishing its' characters before trying to elicit emotion by bouncing them off each other. It doesn't work for everyone (you and Film Crit Hulk share that critique), but you can't deny that Feige and his team have put in effort to reach the point where A:AoU and CA:CW can generate most of its' tensions by bouncing the primary cast off of one another. DCEU badly seems to want that, as BvS and SS proved, but doesn't lay the groundwork necessary. The result are bloated messes of movies that try to do too much at once and ends up collapsing on themselves (BvS) or get edited into a weird mess (SS).
 

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Laggyteabag said:
I wonder what will happen if Justice League turns out to be another critical failure.

Reboot it again after a few years, ie, Sony's Spider-Man and Amazing Spider-Man, or just stick with it and carry on with a critically panned franchise, that is at least commercially successful?

To be fair, I think everyone and their mum knows that this film is going to turn out like trash, but I am really interested to see just how bad it really is.
Honestly they should reshoot the whole thing. Scrap the entire movie, start with a new script, and spend a few years doing it all again. At this point they can't afford another critical failure. Who cares if it'll cost twice as much? If its a good movie, they'll make a few billion dollars and easily cover costs.

But the DCEU can't take another terrible movie. Better to have a super expensive good movie than what they have now.
 

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Hawki said:
As opposed to Titan A.E., Alien: Resurrection, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, etc.
Ah, this again - the very weak go-to approach for any Whedon critic, although usually it pops up late in a conversation.

On Atlantis he was one of six writers. On Titan he didn't contribute to the story, and is one of three writers. Alien Resurrection was a failure of a project across the board, and I can't fathom who thought pairing Joss with that franchise was a good idea (though in retrospect AR's probably been displaced by Scott's newly atrocious Prometheus flicks for the joint wooden spoon in the franchise).

Whedon isn't infalliable.
Care to quote where I said he was? All artists have weaknesses in their body of work, but it's safe to say Joss has done his worst work in the least important projects.

(I might try to say Angel was his worst work in terms of a whole project, but I never really liked the character or the actor - as far as his acting went - and so to this day I've not watched the entirety of Angel)

I can't agree there. Iron Man is relatively light-hearted, but it does at least take itself seriously. It helps that Tony has an actual character arc, and Stane, while not the most brilliant of villains, is at least a villain with some menace and actual motivations.
Well, yeah, we'll agree to disagree on that one. I'm not sure you'd find many people with a thorough knowledge of the MCU who'd try to assert RDJ didn't set the tone for the entire universe, though.

As for Stane? The MCU's always had a weakness with its antagonists and/or villains, and for the most part I'm fine with that (I could say Malekith in Thor 2 was one of the most pointless antagonists I've ever seen in a film, but the entire film was treading water so he's not exactly deserving of special criticism); I'd rather a story biased heavily towards its protagonists than anything else, at least in the kinds of narratives the MCU tells.

Undemanding popcorn entertainment with shallow good guys fighting shallow bad guys?
You might be incapable of connecting to them, but the MCU's built its globe conquering success on its lead characters, and on regular audiences - and a lot of nerdier fans - being able to relate to and empathise with them.

As for "undemanding popcorn entertainment": and? Are mass market comicbook universes supposed to be something else specific? What do you expect, Denis Villeneuve or Lars Von Trier in the directors chairs?

Most would agree Marvel Studios have crafted a world of heart and smarts just fine, and that more than services the requirements of populist entertainment. I feel we're living in a golden age of mass market entertainment, and we're sure as hell living in the best era in history when it comes to comicbook properties being adapted worth a damn, across the bigscreen and small.

How the heck was Civil War dark?
If you actually read the context of the very sentence you quoted, you'll see my line was specifically about films being tonally darker than The Avengers, disproving the false claim that somehow Joss defined what the MCU can or can't be. Civil War is certainly tonally darker and more 'serious' than The Avengers. No 'puny god' lines to break up a fairly grim action finale.

I mean, okay, at the very, VERY least, you could say that Civil War has some level of analogy to contemporary issues with the debate of security vs. freedom and the nature of oversight, but they're such broad strokes and so academic to the overall product, I can barely give it credit for it.
You're responding to your own points given you either ignored or misread what I said about Civil War, but I'll briefly address that anyway.

I'd say The Winter Soldier had more socially relevant depth and punch than Civil War, and I'd personally never try to make the case for Civil War having anything particularly worthwhile to 'say' about anything. That's not the point, surely. I adore The Winter Soldier, and feel it's one of the very best thriller action films ever crafted, and certainly a highlight of comicbook properties. But I remember Comicbookgirl19 gushing about its sociopolitical relevance (ditto the frequently superficial bordering on dim Chris Stuckman, I think) and I feel that's mostly bullshit; it's mostly structural text as opposed to subtextual theme, and as nice as it is to have these kinds of films tying into such realworld concerns, the true focus is always on these rather mythic characters and their own internal universes.

TWS had some nice elements to ground it (enough to feel a sense of heightened reality, that it was connected to our own world and daily lives), but it was still really the story of supersoldiers and 'man out of time' conflicts.

I mean, the scene everyone remembers from that film is the airport fight scene, which, to quote another piece of work, is "a tale, told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." Heck, at least the fight between Tony and Steve at the end has some level of emotional gravitas.
Er, a setpiece action sequence isn't really a "tale, told" at all, so the comparison doesn't really work.

The Russo's knew the end was going to be relatively grim, they had a plot point to provide a low stakes yet still consequential conflict, and so they crafted a phenomenal sequence out of it to wow the audience before the tone shifted. Isn't that, y'know, kinda the point of populist entertainment? That's the director's raison d'etre?

The audience could never quite 'enjoy' in the same way Cap and Stark potentially fatally beating the shit out of each other over a decades old betrayal, and so we have a scene introducing Spider-Man, no less, as well as showing off Giant Man where the goal is to stop or evade each other.

And no, not everyone immediately thinks of the airport scene. Personally, I do tend to think of the final fight, but mostly the ridiculously awesome staircase fight/escape featuring Bucky and Cap, as well as the superb final scene between Black Panther and Zemo (great actors with a great script).

And okay, fine, a film doesn't need to have some kind of underlying theme or message to be good, but if Phase 1 sets the standard for the MCU, then it's little wonder why there's so few MCU films I can consider "good," considering how vapid the characters are (especially the villains).
What's your ideal comicbook film, then?
 

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Gethsemani said:
Hawki said:
How long does it take in MoS and WW for the characters to wear their suits? I'd wager a similar amount of time.
Haven't clocked them, but that sounds about right. My point was aimed at BvS and how hastily and sketchily Batman gets introduced, set up and then set off so he can drive the plot of the titular showdown with Superman.

Hawki said:
BvS suffers from a bloat in worldbuilding, but I don't buy the idea that you need pre-existing films for an ensemble piece. If you want an MCU example, take Guardians - it sets up a crew of five, and all receive some degree of characterization. That number increases in films like Star Trek 2009 (seven; Kirk and co. each get at least one moment to shine) or nine (Fellowship of the Ring). Looking at the Avengers, alright, fine, every one of the titular characters had appeared in at least one film. That isn't enough to make it a good film in my eyes, since it's plagued by a cliche script, with cliche characters going up against a cliche villain.

I don't have much hope for Justice League, but the lack of pre-existing films isn't an issue in of itself for me.
It isn't, and I think I might have put forth my argument rather poorly. The problem with BvS, SS and what is likely to happen to JL is that the DCEU wants to reach the same level of character interaction and conflict that Avengers had. Avengers had the luxury of having six out of seven characters set up (Black Widow having been characterized in Iron Man 1/2 and Hawkeye being the only real newcomer) going in, so it could immediately start setting up the tension and most of Avengers is driven by the tension of those six (not counting brainwashed-Hawkeye) characters trying to work together. As the cherry on top the main villain (Loki) had already been set-up by Thor so he needed no introduction either. BvS tried to do the same, but since Batman and Luthor were new to the franchise they both needed establishing and the movie crammed Batman's establishing piece, the conflict with Luthor and the Supes/Bat showdown into one movie.

The deal with GotG is that the characterization is very, very sweeping and there's very little inter-personal drama. Groot is groot, Rocket is a sociopathic raccoon with a heart of Gold, Star Lord is a laid back dude, Gamorra is an emotionally distant killer with a troubled past and Dax is the comic relief powerhouse. GotG runs on cliches to cut down its' need for establishing scenes, which saves it a tremendous amount of time. BvS didn't want to do that and JL seems to try for deeper characters too, which you just can't fit into a ensemble piece where 3 or 4 people must try to hug the spotlight while the plot drives forward and the big bad is established too. To make that work you need to go the Star Trek/Suicide Squad way and establish a pair of main characters (Spock/Kirk and Deadshot/Harley) and leave the rest of the ensemble as sidekicks. Which doesn't seem to be the route JL wants to take either.

To try and put all this rambling into something concise: The DCEU runners seems to want the same meaningful character interactions that the MCU has, where the ensemble films are largely driven by the conflicts in the group. At the same time the DCEU runners seem unwilling to properly establish their cast and get straight to the "cool stuff". As you said, the lack of pre-existing films doesn't have to be a problem, if the DCEU runners are ready to sideline Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman in favor of Bats, WW and Supes. That way JL can deliver an evenly paced story. But since it seems as if they want Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman to get proper introductions and characterizations, there's a very real risk that JL will end up with the same kind of plodding bloat that plagued BvS and SS. Simply because the showrunners wants to do too much with not enough time.
I see nothing from JL that suggests the plot will be driven by the conflicts of the cast. Indeed, one way that the DCEU has set itself apart from the MCU is that it doesn't just focus on petty drama between the characters but acknowledges the impact of their actions on the world around them as well as the actions of the villains and other forces. If this where an MCU film, the Apokalips invasion would be background noise for the main plot of Bruce trying to score with Diana.

I know that a lot of writers and audiences have been convinced that a bunch of good looking people standing around and arguing like school children but their are stories where that is more detrimental than helpful to the story (see pretty much all of the CW DC shows). There's only so much disbelief people can suspend that the world must rely on a bunch of increasingly unstable loons and that's pretty much been the issue with the MCU since Iron Man 2. For all the talk about how Snyder's movies are immature, I find the MCU's disregard for the normal people of it's universe far more egregious. And I don't think it will be too difficult to get decent characterization out of Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman without sidelining any of the other three and frankly Superman seems like he'll be left out of much of the movie any way, so that's one less guy to hog the spotlight.
 

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Dirty Hipsters said:
It's 2 different movie studios doing two different movies. Justice League is WB, Mission Impossible is Paramount, the mustache is for Mission Impossible.

Why would Paramount inconvenience themselves and have extra make-up time and costs just to let Henry Cavill shave his mustache so that he can better play Superman in a different movie by a different studio which will not make Paramount any money?
I was thinking more like having the two studios work out an agreement and have WB be the ones footing the bill on the fake mustache and makeup, especially since THEY are the ones who are going to be effected by this digital mustache removal and thus the ones saving money by doing that. Even a really good fake mustache and makeup would come to a really minuscule cost compared to the cost in time and money for the digital removal.
 

Darth Rosenberg

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Agent_Z said:
I?ve watched Whedon?s work just fine. At best I get something like Buff which I start out as liking but over time the cracks start to show. This isn?t even getting into more troubling aspects of his work like his fetshism is skinny, white women clobbering things twice their size (no one would have been whining about Gal Gadot?s body if she were cast by Whedon)...
Are you so superficial you're incapable of looking past the dress size of a female lead? Make up your mind; either athletic figures [in populist action roles] are bad, or they're not.

I can say the same of your attitude towards Snyder?s DCEU work.
In what sense? I refuted specific threadbare criticism. What on earth is there in Snyder's work to defend in the first place? Masculinist power fantasies? Rage? What's 'cool' (seemingly his only guiding star)?

If you define idiocy as not being omniscient and being unable to read the script to know the plot ahead of time, I suppose I can see how they come across as idiots to you.
No, Bruce Wayne being incapable of reason beyond that of an absolutist neocon Bush-era nutjob is how I define idiocy in this instance.

The idiocy goes beyond Batman (and Clark 'Fool me with a kryptonite gas grenade once, shame on you - fool me twice, shame on me' Kent), though, it permeates the entire film and almost every single plot point. Each detail's been discussed to death by now so I won't repeat them.

And frankly, given how notoriously contradicting the depiction of DC?s characters are across stories and media, sometimes even within the same month of released comics, I can?t take Snyder just doing his own thing like everyone else has as reason to rip him apart.
'Cept that's not what Snyder's doing at all - he has absolutely no vision beyond that of the surface level visual (I don't count holding longer on wider single shots in action sequences as a 'vision', either, that just makes him an occasionally adept action director). At best he's shoveling 'iconic' imagery and ideas by the bucketload onto a screen, regardless of whether or not it's a good idea or whether it's best for the story or the extended universe.

If one assumes that everything Marvel does is Holy Writ, then of course, every other way is the bad way it seems.
Oh, sure - which is apparently why I feel, as far as technical filmmaking and 'art' goes, the MCU will never have an equal of The Dark Knight, or perhaps even Logan (they're fulfilling different pop-culture needs so don't benefit much comparison, but still).

The Marvel method pertaining to the MCU isn't the only one by any means. But Warner don't have a method, yet - they have desperation, appalling scripts, and intrusively unintelligent studio interference. A way is the one thing they've dearly lacked since the start.

Snyder has zero control in editing.
That's clearly absurd given the critical importance of editing, but I suppose it might help explain why MoS and BvS were so bad.

And between being wall paper in every film he?s appeared in, getting killed off in Smallville and basically having to be re-written into a completely unrecognisable character on Supergirl, I can hardly blame Snyder for being one of many to come to the conclusion of ?yeah this guy really adds nothing of value, does he??.
I think Superman's a fairly dull superhero, for all the obvious reasons. But if Snyder couldn't find something worthwhile for Supes to do in a film called Batman v Superman, then he should've stepped away from the project, or insisted on it being a solo Batman film (or something else entirely).

I have a lot of difficulty taking this argument seriously when you champion the MCU, whose version of Steve Rogers is nothing more than a self righteous, hypocritical war hawk whose only true skill and calling is beating the crap out of people and yet has somehow amassed a ridiculous amount of popularity.
The MCU's Steve Rogers is a much better Superman - as far as incorruptible icons fighting for truth and justice goes - than the DCEU's... which is a sad reflection on the mischaracterisations Warner started with.

Rogers is a soldier, so a trained killer (though even on duty in a mission he still tries to KO his opponents, e.g. the opening to Winter Soldier), and self-sacrifice is always his instinctual course of action. His moral compass is made clear in The First Avenger when he states he has no interest in specifically killing anyone (Nazi's or no) - he simply wants to stop bullies, be they guys in alleyways or fascist nations.

Are you Whedon?s auto biographer or something? Cause I really do not get why you?re trying this hard to shill him to me and honestly, it?s getting a little creepy.
I was pointing out Snyder's obvious limitations with regards to trying to go for a more light-hearted tone. Nothing suggests he's equipped to do it.

Something the MCU has avoided in Phases 1 and 2 and fantastically bungled in Phase 3 in Civil War. It?s amusing to me how Snyder is accused of promoting fascism in his DCEU films...
No, they accuse him of that in some of his other films, too.

...yet the MCU is the one that champions putting unearned faith in charismatic individuals, while depicting the authorities put in place as inherently corrupt and incompetent, while the people they defend are helpless peons with no agency, their voices drowned out by the sounds of the melodramatic whining by the main characters.
I wouldn't try to deny there is an allure of power fantasies with some disturbing ethical and philosophical ramifications at the heart of so many superheroes and mythologies.

So much of the medium's history has concerned itself with either surface level reflections or deconstructions of that (be it in the form of specific characters and/or arcs). So yes, if you choose to look at the MCU's Avengers in a certain light, there is that same individualised lawless corruption.

But beyond a certain point, and dependent on tone, we just have to accept the internality of the worlds for what they are and roll with it. In the MCU I was wholly Team Cap - in reality I'd be Team Stark, for very obvious reasons.

In a way I'd like the MCU to get darker, to delve deeper into the ideas of cause and consequence. But that really isn't its grand intent, nor should it be; Thanos is next up on their list of direct antagonists, so pondering vigilantism won't exactly be a priority... The conceit of the Avengers is that they are earth's protectors, when no government or nation is capable of it. These individuals aren't paragons or gods, but they still give themselves for the greater good.

We have The Dark Knight and, hell, Daredevil and the Punisher shouting at each other on a rooftop to mull over cause, consequences, morality, and threat escalation.

...Civil War was supposed to be a valid examination of the Avengers? actions.
Was it? I thought everyone knew it had barely any connection to the comics run (given how wildly the rosters differed, and how different the two universes were at their respective timelines), and was going to be much smaller scale and more about a personal conflict? That's what I expected, and that's exactly what I got.

And frankly, the Martha thing has been taken out of context so often for a cheap shot, I'm not even going to bother dignifying it by trying to explain it for the millionth time to someone who doesn't bother actually paying attention to that scene.
No one ever mistook it or took it out of context. It was simply an infantile piece of plotting and characterisation, presented embarrassingly which cut short a terribly filmed action sequence that many had waited decades to see.

Though I suppose it can potentially be viewed as internally consistent given the adolescent psychology of the entire script.

You know it helps if you actually pay attention to what people say or do some damn research instead of saying, ?I heard it from a guy? (which interestingly enough describes just about every click bait report on the DCEU).
Reputations precede people, but you're right, it'd be unfair to dismiss the potential influence Johns might have - though I suspect he has been brought in for precisely the reason I intimated. He sure as hell knows the characters better than Snyder ever has or ever could, so I hope he elevates this Batman, at least, as I think Affleck could be great in the role.

Ditto Cavill, but he's had two whole films to be screwed over already. Long gone is the hopeful promise of the original MoS teaser.

Whedon is not reshaping anything. he's the guy directing some additional acenes and completing the post-production work already started by Zack. At least, that's what we've been told DOZENS of times. Of course, this movie could be a Snyder movie from top to bottom and people would insist was the Holy Grail just because Whedon was involved in it.
We'll have to wait and see. Or, rather, we more likely won't ever truly know exactly who shot what, and how Whedon's cut would've differed from Snyder's. That's partly why I'm so disappointed he agreed to do it; if it ends up a clusterfuck he'll either be the guy who helped ruined it, or the guy who couldn't save it. Either way, it's a black mark.

And if some dumb clickbait sites/articles try to simplistically assert Joss 'saved' it if it turns out good? That'll also be unknowable, and just as speculative without anything to compare it to. It's almost certainly going to be frustrating to deconstruct no matter what happens.
 

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immortalfrieza said:
Dirty Hipsters said:
It's 2 different movie studios doing two different movies. Justice League is WB, Mission Impossible is Paramount, the mustache is for Mission Impossible.

Why would Paramount inconvenience themselves and have extra make-up time and costs just to let Henry Cavill shave his mustache so that he can better play Superman in a different movie by a different studio which will not make Paramount any money?
I was thinking more like having the two studios work out an agreement and have WB be the ones footing the bill on the fake mustache and makeup, especially since THEY are the ones who are going to be effected by this digital mustache removal and thus the ones saving money by doing that. Even a really good fake mustache and makeup would come to a really minuscule cost compared to the cost in time and money for the digital removal.
But why would Paramount agree to that? They have nothing to gain from an arrangement like that even if WB did foot the bill for it.
 

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Darth Rosenberg said:
Are you so superficial you're incapable of looking past the dress size of a female lead? Make up your mind; either athletic figures [in populist action roles] are bad, or they're not.
When did I say anything about athletic figures in action roles are bad? I simply pointed out a reoccurring trend in Whedon?s works.
Darth Rosenberg said:
No, Bruce Wayne being incapable of reason beyond that of an absolutist neocon Bush-era nutjob is how I define idiocy in this instance.
?Criminals are a superstitious and cowardly lot.?
?I am vengeance, I am the night.?
There is a reason why these are two of the most well known quotes attributed to the Dark Knight. The man has never been a picture of compassion and mental stability no matter how much his fans try to sugar coat him. Aside from not being a killer (which isn?t even consistent), the guy doesn?t have much going for him morality wise. He?s a manipulative, abusive and self-destructive jerk with no respect for laws, civil rights, and even the friggin' Geneva Convention given his treatment of minors under his care. There's a reason none of the cinematic iterations would touch that little bundle of joy with a fifteen-foot pole. You can base entire psychology textbooks around how this particular tidbit gets completely ignored by the same fans that decry and preach against lethal action with regard to unrepentant criminals.
What Snyder has done with Batman has shown just how crazy you?d have to be to think dressing up in a fetish suit and beating the hell out of people is a good way to combat crime and poverty.
Darth Rosenberg said:
The idiocy goes beyond Batman (and Clark 'Fool me with a kryptonite gas grenade once, shame on you - fool me twice, shame on me' Kent), though, it permeates the entire film and almost every single plot point. Each detail's been discussed to death by now so I won't repeat them.
You know it really does not do to whine about masculinist power fantasies when your complaints boil down to Superman not curb stomping every obstacle he comes across with ease. Seriously, not only is this the first time he?s encountered Kryptonite, he didn?t want an actual fight and was still clearly recovering from the effects. And given how many times Superman in other media gets smacked by Kryptonite, I can?t help but see this as yet another double standard.
Darth Rosenberg said:
'Cept that's not what Snyder's doing at all - he has absolutely no vision beyond that of the surface level visual (I don't count holding longer on wider single shots in action sequences as a 'vision', either, that just makes him an occasionally adept action director). At best he's shoveling 'iconic' imagery and ideas by the bucketload onto a screen, regardless of whether or not it's a good idea or whether it's best for the story or the extended universe.
He?s done more to make Superman feel like a person than any other person who?s written or directed him. Brian Singer more aptly fits your description.

Darth Rosenberg said:
Oh, sure - which is apparently why I feel, as far as technical filmmaking and 'art' goes, the MCU will never have an equal of The Dark Knight, or perhaps even Logan (they're fulfilling different pop-culture needs so don't benefit much comparison, but still).

The Marvel method pertaining to the MCU isn't the only one by any means. But Warner don't have a method, yet - they have desperation, appalling scripts, and intrusively unintelligent studio interference. A way is the one thing they've dearly lacked since the start.
They do have a way. It?s one you dislike because it slaughters sacred cows.

Darth Rosenberg said:
That's clearly absurd given the critical importance of editing, but I suppose it might help explain why MoS and BvS were so bad.
If you know anything about franchises like this, you?d know just how little control directors have over this stuff. Just ask Whedon or Favreau.

Darth Rosenberg said:
I think Superman's a fairly dull superhero, for all the obvious reasons. But if Snyder couldn't find something worthwhile for Supes to do in a film called Batman v Superman, then he should've stepped away from the project, or insisted on it being a solo Batman film (or something else entirely).
Um, I was talking about Jimmy Olsen.
Darth Rosenberg said:
In what sense? I refuted specific threadbare criticism. What on earth is there in Snyder's work to defend in the first place? Masculinist power fantasies? Rage? What's 'cool' (seemingly his only guiding star)?
Darth Rosenberg said:
The MCU's Steve Rogers is a much better Superman - as far as incorruptible icons fighting for truth and justice goes - than the DCEU's... which is a sad reflection on the mischaracterisations Warner started with.
Incorruptible? Is this what we?re calling a man who recruits terrorists, lies to his team mates and continually ignores the sovereign rights of foreign lands even when confronted with the damage his reckless actions have wrought all the while hypocritically railing against ?people with agendas?? MCU Steve Rogers is basically Big Boss from Metal Gear except the MCU writers don?t know they?ve created a villain. That?s what he became the moment he went all Incredibles about how people are weak and corrupt for not wanting to put up with an increasingly unstable loon whose only purpose in life is battle. But this gets ignored by fans due to the moral luck of every character who challenges him being a villain or a hypocrite. You wanna talk about masculine power fantasies? There?s your guy.
What is their to defend in Snyder?s work? How about the fact that his Superman is very much the opposite of the war hawk Steve is? DCEU Clark avoided fighting his entire existence until the invasion (which he fought off with the aid of normal humans. Snyder also remembers to give humans agency in his films which the MCU does not). Even in BvS, it was shown the guy prefers merely using his powers to stop disasters or fight of inhuman monsters than get into international brawls. The incedent in Nairobi was the exception and he was willing to answer for it unlike Steve with his blunder in Lagos. He actually is shown learning from his mistakes and the people who call him out aren?t dismissed as villains (except Lex).
He also has the decency not to mack on his girlfriend?s niece.

Darth Rosenberg said:
Rogers is a soldier, so a trained killer (though even on duty in a mission he still tries to KO his opponents, e.g. the opening to Winter Soldier), and self-sacrifice is always his instinctual course of action. His moral compass is made clear in The First Avenger when he states he has no interest in specifically killing anyone (Nazi's or no) - he simply wants to stop bullies, be they guys in alleyways or fascist nations.
Yeah, interesting how his idea of helping people always seems to involve fists and guns.
And Rogers isn?t a soldier. He?s a propaganda tool who was thrown into a war with minimal training and elevated to icon status after his supposed death. You can clearly see this in Civil War when people just blindly follow him simply because he? Captain America despite the numerous tactical and political blunders he makes.

Darth Rosenberg said:
I was pointing out Snyder's obvious limitations with regards to trying to go for a more light-hearted tone. Nothing suggests he's equipped to do it.
His Legend of the Guardians movie suggests otherwise.

Darth Rosenberg said:
No, they accuse him of that in some of his other films, too.
The only film that could remotely be accused of this is 300 and that should be blamed more on Miller the guy who wrote the comic it was based on.


Darth Rosenberg said:
I wouldn't try to deny there is an allure of power fantasies with some disturbing ethical and philosophical ramifications at the heart of so many superheroes and mythologies.

So much of the medium's history has concerned itself with either surface level reflections or deconstructions of that (be it in the form of specific characters and/or arcs). So yes, if you choose to look at the MCU's Avengers in a certain light, there is that same individualised lawless corruption.

But beyond a certain point, and dependent on tone, we just have to accept the internality of the worlds for what they are and roll with it. In the MCU I was wholly Team Cap - in reality I'd be Team Stark, for very obvious reasons.

In a way I'd like the MCU to get darker, to delve deeper into the ideas of cause and consequence. But that really isn't its grand intent, nor should it be; Thanos is next up on their list of direct antagonists, so pondering vigilantism won't exactly be a priority... The conceit of the Avengers is that they are earth's protectors, when no government or nation is capable of it. These individuals aren't paragons or gods, but they still give themselves for the greater good.

We have The Dark Knight and, hell, Daredevil and the Punisher shouting at each other on a rooftop to mull over cause, consequences, morality, and threat escalation.
I can accept the internality of a fictional world provided the writers don?t try to wring drama out of tropes they know cannot deconstruct for the sake of the status quo. As I said, had the MCU just stuck to mindless superhero fun, I?d have forgiven them. But then we started talks about accountability as far back as Iron Man 2 and the cracks began to show. If the writers want me to suspend my disbelief, they need to know their limits. Why should I just accept that these guys are necessary for the survival of the human race given the movies focus solely on how their personal issues cause as much damage as the villains? Whether it?s Thor causing an interplanetary war in his first film, Tony?s messiah complex leading to him creating Skynet Jr, Steve?s blood knight tendencies and overemotional nature causing him to defy both the authorities and the people or Wanda?s vengeance getting innocents killed and suffering no consequences for it.
It?s the same issue with stories about whether or not irredeemable murderers who treat prison time like a ten minute vacation should be put six feet under ultimately decide that it is better for the hero to maintain an arbitrary high horse rather than do everything within their power to ensure more innocents do not die. Man of Steel at least had the stones to answer the question of what to do with a relentless mad man hell bent on committing genocide on an innocent planet. Superman writers could actually stand to learn a few lessons on focusing on a hero?s purpose rather than his questionable status as a moral icon which only has any real weight within the fictional worlds they occupy.
Honestly, I don?t have any faith future movies will portray Thanos as the cosmic nightmare he is given this franchise?s treatment of any villain not named Loki. Instead, I fully expect that he?ll be a foot note in a story that is more concerned with seeing if the Avengers will kiss and make up. Basically, movie length version of a CW DC tv show episode.
Look at it like this; starting out darker but going lighter in the future (whether they pull it off is honestly a matter of opinion) means the DCEU largely avoids the problems the MCU has.

Darth Rosenberg said:
Was it? I thought everyone knew it had barely any connection to the comics run (given how wildly the rosters differed, and how different the two universes were at their respective timelines), and was going to be much smaller scale and more about a personal conflict? That's what I expected, and that's exactly what I got.
Then maybe they shouldn?t have called it ?Civil War? and gone for something more appropriate like ?When Adults Fight Like School Children?.


Darth Rosenberg said:
No one ever mistook it or took it out of context. It was simply an infantile piece of plotting and characterisation, presented embarrassingly which cut short a terribly filmed action sequence that many had waited decades to see.

Though I suppose it can potentially be viewed as internally consistent given the adolescent psychology of the entire script.
You know what, I?ve had this argument too many times, so maybe we?ll just agree to disagree on this.


Darth Rosenberg said:
Reputations precede people, but you're right, it'd be unfair to dismiss the potential influence Johns might have - though I suspect he has been brought in for precisely the reason I intimated. He sure as hell knows the characters better than Snyder ever has or ever could, so I hope he elevates this Batman, at least, as I think Affleck could be great in the role.
You?ll be the first Batman fan I know who thinks Johns can elevate Batman. He?s become to Batman fans what Frank Miller has become to Superman fans.
To be honest Johns is a hit and miss type of person. He?s written great stuff like Justice Society and is Superman run back in the 2000s started out strong. On the other hand, he doesn?t have a good handle on many women, minority and legacy characters and he tends to worship the Silver Age a bit too much. The truth is merely knowing stuff about the characters isn?t enough as Brian Singer showed us.


Darth Rosenberg said:
Ditto Cavill, but he's had two whole films to be screwed over already. Long gone is the hopeful promise of the original MoS teaser.
Whether or not you think MoS delivered on its promise depends on what you want out of Superman. If you want the lionization of a guy who has never known an ounce of suffering and is treated as morally superior due to him benefiting from contrivances provided by his writers (like time warping powers that reverse deaths he doesn?t like) you?ll be disappointed. If you prefer a guy who isn?t perfect, something both he and the script and acknowledge but at the end of the day does the best he can and strives to do better which is much more relatable, I?d say you?ll be satisfied. Alas, far too many Superman fans are enamored of his status as an untouchable paragon as opposed to his duty.
 

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Agent_Z said:
When did I say anything about athletic figures in action roles are bad? I simply pointed out a reoccurring trend in Whedon?s works.
No, you pointed out a recurring trend/norm in populist entertainment and society, so to try to claim it is essentially distinct to Whedon as a creator is disingenuous.

The man has never been a picture of compassion and mental stability no matter how much his fans try to sugar coat him. Aside from not being a killer (which isn?t even consistent), the guy doesn?t have much going for him morality wise. He?s a manipulative, abusive and self-destructive jerk with no respect for laws, civil rights, and even the friggin' Geneva Convention given his treatment of minors under his care. There's a reason none of the cinematic iterations would touch that little bundle of joy with a fifteen-foot pole.
I'd say The Dark Knight addressed the moral and philosophical ambiguity and turmoil well enough, but it did so whilst mostly retaining Wayne's logical faculties and sense of [albeit damaged] humanity. The conflict between wanting to do what's just and still being drawn over the line to vigilantism was well realised, and Nolan's broader moral framework is established in the short but brilliant scene between Bruce and Rachel in the first film, where he sheepishly reveals his initial plan of vengeance against Joe Chill.

Then there's the line at the end of Begins regarding escalation, which sets up TDK and the idea that he and the Joker are simply equal and opposite reactions as a consequence of transgressing against all laws and order, and imposing one's own order/disorder upon the world by force.

Nolan's films portray his dark side well enough without needing to make him behave like a violent, unthinking, insecurely macho halfbrain.

Also, in BvS we have no real context as to how this psychotic Batman came to be, nor do we have time or space to explore the world's morality (and for the most part Alfred just goes along with his killing sprees - a few snarky comments aren't enough of a challenge). There is no time, of course, but it isn't a work of art or a cohesive story; it is a corporate byproduct of one studio fumbling to ape another's business model without understanding why it succeeded (any critic or admirer of the MCU could've told 'em, for free, I'd guess).

Feck knows how Batman will come across in Justice League, although Affleck's already said he'll be more "traditional". If so it won't be because of a character arc - it will simply be because people didn't like BvS's bleakly stupid iteration. Again; a corporate reaction as opposed to anything creative.

What Snyder has done with Batman has shown just how crazy you?d have to be to think dressing up in a fetish suit and beating the hell out of people is a good way to combat crime and poverty.
Right, and he did that by presenting it through his own fetish; violence... Kinda takes the edge off the 'message' or theme, doesn't it? When the audience is sitting there cooing at Batman murdering people? Nothing says 'isn't he a nutjob' like 'Hey, watch him smash a car into other cars and kill people in this really nifty stunt!'.

Who knows, maybe Snyder's trying to be subversive...

You know it really does not do to whine about masculinist power fantasies when your complaints boil down to Superman not curb stomping every obstacle he comes across with ease.
Incorrect, I was specifically objecting to Superman being perhaps dumber than Batman in their fight.

Seriously, not only is this the first time he?s encountered Kryptonite...
Is he so dim he can't learn? Even children and animals tend to learn 'fire bad' by touching it once.

He?s done more to make Superman feel like a person than any other person who?s written or directed him. Brian Singer more aptly fits your description.
Yikes, you really are on of The Few with regards to MoS and BvS, aren't you (or perhaps just Snyder?).

The original MoS teaser pointed towards a more traditional expression of the icon, and that was a film I wanted to see. However, it was a lie, given the actual film - in tone and plotting - absolutely contradicts the potential of hope and vibrancy. Instead we got a morose, sullen Supes' bullying random civvies, a [suicidal] Pa Kent who wondered whether someone with power and the means to save lives should instead let lives be snuffed out for the sake of self-interest, and of course an orgy of carnage to give everyone headaches at the end.

This was a surly Superman film reveling in violence and destruction. Not every retelling of a character should be rigidly orthodox, but there is such a thing as simply going against the grain to such an extent that you fail to grasp why a character is cherished and valued.

They do have a way. It?s one you dislike because it slaughters sacred cows.
Well, yeah, we can agree Snyder, Terrio, and Goyer certainly butchered icons.

If you know anything about franchises like this, you?d know just how little control directors have over this stuff. Just ask Whedon or Favreau.
Directors still work with their editors and have input, so to try to assert Snyder had "zero input" over his own film's editing is patently ridiculous.

Jeese, we're not talking about giving a director say over the final cut or anything.

Um, I was talking about Jimmy Olsen.
Hah, fair enough, though it's amusing I could be talking about BvS's use of Olsen or Supes and the text barely changes.

Still, it shows how unthinkingly callous or selfish Snyder is in terms of just offing such a character with no regard as to who might want to use him later. Now they can't. Just as Doomsday's ruined, the death arc is ruined, 'Lex' Luthor's ruined (though I suppose there's a tradition on the bigscreen in making Luthor an incompetent buffoon), and so on.

Incorruptible? Is this what we?re calling a man who recruits terrorists, lies to his team mates and continually ignores the sovereign rights of foreign lands even when confronted with the damage his reckless actions have wrought all the while hypocritically railing against ?people with agendas??
You are aware it's not real, right? That comicbook universes operate by their own rules?

If you have issue with all power fantasies in any comicbook property, then sure, go ahead and fault that entire need in human culture going back through our history.

The MCU operates within its own internal rules, and so their actions are to be judged against that - not our own. As I said: in reality Team Stark is correct, but on the page (or on the screen) given all we know of the universe and the potential threats - and that we know Cap always has the best of intentions - Team Cap is a valid path.

Yeah, interesting how his idea of helping people always seems to involve fists and guns.
Again, newsflash! It ain't real. If you want action films with no action, then--- well, go right ahead, I guess.

His Legend of the Guardians movie suggests otherwise.
Are you a Snyder completionist then? I can't comment on its tone as it looked dreadful and its reputation is less than stellar.

The only film that could remotely be accused of this is 300 and that should be blamed more on Miller the guy who wrote the comic it was based on.
I've only seen it once and a half, and not recently so I couldn't go into detail, but Watchmen is another nasty masculinist film from Snyder, where I always felt wary of his sympathies and put off by the depictions of violence.

Again he's clearly not the author, but you can tell a lot from the execution of an idea.

I can accept the internality of a fictional world provided the writers don?t try to wring drama out of tropes they know cannot deconstruct for the sake of the status quo.
Most constructed worlds try to have their cake and eat it - it's a given as far as internal creative tension goes, frankly.

Is it ideal? Perhaps not. Is it almost always inevitable? Yes.

As I said, had the MCU just stuck to mindless superhero fun, I?d have forgiven them. But then we started talks about accountability as far back as Iron Man 2 and the cracks began to show.
For me IM2's probably the outright worse film in the MCU, but its thematic narrative focus was - by and large - still inspired by the Demon In A Bottle plot beat, ergo it was heavily entrenched in iconic elements of the entire character.

If nodding to late '70's era arcs counts as deconstruction of a "mindless superhero" world, then so be it... but I think you'll find most people just see that as coherent to the medium's way of telling stories for characters that span decades or even generations. Part of a continuum. There aren't many stories you can tell if you rigidly restrict yourself to the box marked "mindless", funnily enough.

Honestly, I don?t have any faith future movies will portray Thanos as the cosmic nightmare he is given this franchise?s treatment of any villain not named Loki. Instead, I fully expect that he?ll be a foot note in a story that is more concerned with seeing if the Avengers will kiss and make up.
You seem confused as to why people want to see stories about people...

It's paraphrased as it was maybe about a decade ago, but I remember a good line Michael Caine had in a short interview with Channel 4 News. The question was about him being becoming a 'star', I think, and the reply was along the lines of 'When people come to the cinema they don't come to see me - they come to see themselves reflected up there on the screen'.

That's an essential element of storytelling, frankly, so it's no wonder the MCU's struck a global chord by engaging normal punters with these larger than life avatars of all kinds of themes and ideas. The Silver Age thankfully presented characters who were flawed, who we could identify with and relate to. That's kinda the point of art as a whole... To explore who and what we are, and art externalises and then collectivises that ongoing process.

Something like the MCU plays a very modest populist part in that, sure, but it's still a relevant part of the whole, just like The Dark Knight and The Bourne Identity were in terms of a post-9/11 reaction to a world which suddenly felt far more hostile and, crucially, far less certain in terms of 'us and them' and right and wrong (obviously that mood continued, and that same mistrust of our own supposedly moral power structures is found in The Avengers and most brazenly The Winter Soldier, with Cap providing a moral conduit of wish fulfilling empowerment when in reality we have no such power, and the solutions aren't as simple as blowing up some helicarriers).

As for Thanos? I'm kinda disappointed in his MCU depiction already, just as I was in Ultron (I loved his eventual characterisation, and Spader was perfect for the voice, but I felt it was a waste to have that potent a threat on the page depicted as barely more than a localised Big Bad. Ultron's origins should've been subtly spread across at least another film [or two] before AoU. and for a character who's had such a great visual design over the decades, the MCU's was incredibly bland). Thanos' full reveal as a character was pitiful, for starters.

Apparently the leaked Infinity War teaser hints they could be doing him some justice, though, so we'll see.

Look at it like this; starting out darker but going lighter in the future (whether they pull it off is honestly a matter of opinion) means the DCEU largely avoids the problems the MCU has.
I see tonal contradiction as a result of Warner's corporate flipflopping, wanting to adjust to what sells better as established by Marvel. They swung and partly missed with MoS, and swung and missed hard on BvS (and Suicide Squad, though I've not seen that clusterfuck yet).

Moving from grimdark to something more conventional - and popular - clearly isn't an artistic choice for them. It's creative cowardice (they might've made even worse films had they kept doubling down on the grimdark, but I'd have respected their desire to be distinct).

If Warner wanted to learn how to do gritty and genuinely mature and not chicken out, then perhaps they could've just first looked to their own The Dark Knight, or to Netflix's Daredevil and Jessica Jones.

Then maybe they shouldn?t have called it ?Civil War? and gone for something more appropriate like ?When Adults Fight Like School Children?.
Maybe they called it Civil War because the essential idea is the same as the comic arc Civil War and the same leaders represented the same sides in an inter-superhero conflict? I know, I know, I'm going out on a limb with that one...

You?ll be the first Batman fan I know who thinks Johns can elevate Batman. He?s become to Batman fans what Frank Miller has become to Superman fans.
I said "...so I hope he elevates this Batman", not "think" he will, and I'm comparing him against the incompetent baseline of Terrio and Goyer so he has a low benchmark to beat.

The truth is merely knowing stuff about the characters isn?t enough as Brian Singer showed us.
In this scenario it clearly can't hurt. I find it hard to believe they could mangle these characters any more than they already have.

Whether or not you think MoS delivered on its promise depends on what you want out of Superman.
Maybe I mostly just wanted what the teaser teased?

In case you've forgotten:


If you want the lionization of a guy who has never known an ounce of suffering and is treated as morally superior due to him benefiting from contrivances provided by his writers (like time warping powers that reverse deaths he doesn?t like) you?ll be disappointed. If you prefer a guy who isn?t perfect, something both he and the script and acknowledge but at the end of the day does the best he can and strives to do better which is much more relatable, I?d say you?ll be satisfied. Alas, far too many Superman fans are enamored of his status as an untouchable paragon as opposed to his duty.
He sparked imaginations in children across the globe by representing a hopeful ideal. That was the point of the character. Snyder, Goyer, and Chris Nolan (never was there a man better suited to the Dark Knight as opposed to the big blue boy scout) betrayed that in Man Of Steel, and then Goyer and Terrio doubled down on that in BvS.

Superman Returns isn't a great film, but it's certainly a superior Superman film to anything Snyder's put his hand to so far.
 

twistedmic

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Darth Rosenberg said:
Seriously, not only is this the first time he?s encountered Kryptonite...
Is he so dim he can't learn? Even children and animals tend to learn 'fire bad' by touching it once.
How exactly is Superman dim in that fight scene? He got hit with a Kryptonite gas grenade twice. Once before he knew what Batman had in his launcher then again when he was jumping/flying towards Batman and was unable to dodge the grenade.
Though Superman did quickly realize that Kryptonite would royally fuck up Kryptonians, which is why he used the spear to kill Doomsday.

And the teaser trailer for Man of Steel had clearly somber tone with hints of hope, evidenced by the music and the scenes shown, which was pretty close to what we got in the film proper.
 

COMaestro

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twistedmic said:
Darth Rosenberg said:
Seriously, not only is this the first time he?s encountered Kryptonite...
Is he so dim he can't learn? Even children and animals tend to learn 'fire bad' by touching it once.
How exactly is Superman dim in that fight scene? He got hit with a Kryptonite gas grenade twice. Once before he knew what Batman had in his launcher then again when he was jumping/flying towards Batman and was unable to dodge the grenade.
Though Superman did quickly realize that Kryptonite would royally fuck up Kryptonians, which is why he used the spear to kill Doomsday.
What!? We see Superman fly at supersonic speeds multiple times in these movies, but he can't dodge a grenade? I totally give him the first one, which is why Darth stated the "Fool me once" quote.

But there was a bunch of dimness involved with Superman's part in this fight, and not avoiding the second grenade is hardly the worst of it. He comes to ask Batman for help, because apparently his super-hearing that can pick out Lois Lane in danger half a world away can't find his mom in the same or neighboring city. Batman came to pick a fight so Superman gives him one instead of keeping his distance and talking!? He starts knocking Batman around because he needs to prove he has the bigger dick!?

Just by throwing a punch, Superman had already lost that fight, because it threw out any thought of goodwill or the idea he could be there for something else. The simple words, "Please stop, I need your help," would have prevented the entire fight, following it up with, "to rescue my mother," would have done the same thing the ridiculous "Martha" bit did, with about 135% less cheese.
 

Darth Rosenberg

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twistedmic said:
How exactly is Superman dim in that fight scene? He got hit with a Kryptonite gas grenade twice. Once before he knew what Batman had in his launcher then again when he was jumping/flying towards Batman and was unable to dodge the grenade.
As I referenced earlier; as Nick Mason from the Weekly Planet podcast's review put it 'one kryptonite gas grenade to the face shame on you, two kryptonite gas grenades to the face shame on me', particularly given he watches his adversary for eight whole seconds (a veritable eternity for Superman) as he reloads. People can try their hardest to claim he was still recovering, but only moments before he was able to tank punches without flinching, hovering, able to push Bats' through the floor, and then toss him across the room. What did he think Batman was going to fire at him - another smoke round?

Then there's the fact that "You don't understand. There's no time!" whilst striding menacingly towards a person you apparently don't want to fight is also, to put it mildly, the actions of a dimwitted character, particularly one who's pretty much alien-Jesus who can tank any and all conventional attacks of the aforementioned opponent.

Sure, anyone can look at fight scenes in various films with all kinds of characters and over-analyse them moment to moment, but this wasn't supposed to be just any ol' film fight, this was a clash of icons. Icons who barely knew anything about each other and had no time whatsoever to build up a rapport which then made their fight mean anything, but still...

Sprinkle such a poorly crafted anticlimactic scene with lines like "You're not brave. Men are brave!", and end with the infamous Martha moment, and there you have one of the dumbest head to heads in action film history, as opposed to anything that delivered on the potential. Fans of both characters deserved much better in every sense.

And the teaser trailer for Man of Steel had clearly somber tone with hints of hope, evidenced by the music and the scenes shown, which was pretty close to what we got in the film proper.
You really got suicidal Pa Kent's, 'maybe let a bus full of kids drown to save your identity', neck snapping, bullying, and 9/11 flavoured town and citywide carnage from that, which ends on the line 'In time they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders'? Not sure I got sunlight and wonder from Man Of Steel... or BvS, for that matter. Who knows, maybe 'in time' really meant 'maybe in Justice League after we've junked the Death Of Superman arc but probably after that'.

COMaestro said:
Batman came to pick a fight so Superman gives him one instead of keeping his distance and talking!? He starts knocking Batman around because he needs to prove he has the bigger dick!?
After he takes out the turrets and proves his punchy-throw-y credentials there's about 34secs until his next line - which isn't anything about Luthor's inane plan, but a threat to Batman.

So yeah, for any normal grown adult that's dumb given the circumstances, but for Superman that's all kinds of moronic given the more dangerous Batman seems, and the more he keeps fighting, the greater the risk he chooses to put Martha in. The fight occurs simply because of the film's title - nothing else coherently motivates it.
 

THE_JOKE_KING33

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undeadsuitor said:
Look. I'll give dc credit if they do one thing.


Have cyborg say Booyah

That's it. Do it.
Agreed. I'm definitely not expecting much, but I'd love it if Cyborg says that.
 

Hawki

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Darth Rosenberg said:
(though in retrospect AR's probably been displaced by Scott's newly atrocious Prometheus flicks for the joint wooden spoon in the franchise).
Prometheus, yes, Covenant, no.

Darth Rosenberg said:
As for "undemanding popcorn entertainment": and? Are mass market comicbook universes supposed to be something else specific?
Entertainment that's a bit more fulfilling than popcorn? Something a bit more meaningful than "good guy beats bad guy?"

There's multiple examples of action films still fulfilling the elements of what counts as good story. Even superhero films have done this (Dark Knight, Spider-Man 2, Logan, etc.). As action films, the MCU works, at least. But so often I find them lacking in emotion or narrative/thematic depth. Every so often we get an Iron Man (excels in character), Iron Man 3 (excels in themes), but these are the exceptions rather than the rule. I can enjoy "good guy beats bad guy," but when you're sitting in a cinema for 1.5-2hrs, you want bang for your buck.

Darth Rosenberg said:
I'd say The Winter Soldier had more socially relevant depth and punch than Civil War, and I'd personally never try to make the case for Civil War having anything particularly worthwhile to 'say' about anything. That's not the point, surely.
It's not the point, but a piece of fiction can usually be elevated if it has a theme/motif behind it. The MCU has done this on motif level a few times, and usually, it's elevated for it. To be frank, I think The Dark Knight & Rises are the only films of this genre that really have a significant enough theme to provoke critical analysis, but even if a theme/motif is only on the surface level, a work is usually better off for it.

Darth Rosenberg said:
Er, a setpiece action sequence isn't really a "tale, told" at all, so the comparison doesn't really work.

The Russo's knew the end was going to be relatively grim, they had a plot point to provide a low stakes yet still consequential conflict, and so they crafted a phenomenal sequence out of it to wow the audience before the tone shifted. Isn't that, y'know, kinda the point of populist entertainment? That's the director's raison d'etre?
Fight scenes are still part of the overall story. I will say that as an amateur writer I hate writing action scenes, one of the reasons being that plot usually takes a backseat (the other being that one needs a specific writing style to write action scenes that I don't like applying), but at the end of the day, an action scene should still serve at least one of the five elements of story. One of the most infamous blunders of this philosophy is the lightsaber duel in 'The Phantom Menace', where we have two characters (Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon) fighting a third character (Darth Maul), where they've barely interacted with him at all up to this point. So while the combat in of itself is good, as is the music, there's very little emotion behind it. I don't think it's completely bereft of emotion (Qui-Gon dies, and it does serve as a good microcosm for the divide between the Jedi and Sith, especially with the laser walls), but most people agree that it lacks the emotional punch of the OT duels.

The airport scene isn't as emotionally vapid as that, but it does show signs of this philosophy. Why is Spider-Man forced into the movie? Because it would be cool. Why is Ant-Man literally dragged to the airport? Because it would be cool. Why is it made clear that the airport is free of civilians? Because the writers/producers/whoever didn't want anything getting in the way of the fun (as opposed to something like Man of Steel, which does show the human cost of super-powered beings duking it out). So, yes, the airport scene is 'fun,' and does have some emotional punch (e.g. Rhodes being crippled), but at the end of the day, it's mainly an action scene for the sake of an action scene.

Darth Rosenberg said:
What's your ideal comicbook film, then?
"Comicbook film" is too broad a term. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is a comicbook film that I saw this year (unfortunately...), but it's a different one from the films discussed so far.

If you want my idea of an ideal superhero film, then that's still a bit broad, but if you asked me to name my top three superhero films, at the drop of a hat, I could nominate:

3) Spider-Man 2
2) Logan
1) The Dark Knight

Each of these films have good action and good storytelling. The Dark Knight excels with its themes and its villain. Logan excels with its setting, atmosphere, and the 'rawness' of the emotion. Spider-Man 2 succeeds with its action (e.g. the train scene) and characters, with Peter struggling to lead a double life, while also giving us an emotionally compelling villain.

The three MCU films I can call "good" are Iron Man, Iron Man 3, and Doctor Strange. DS is a weird outlier for me, but if we look at parallels, Iron Man is kind of like SM2 (focus on character, well developed villain), while IM3 is more like The Dark Knight (focus on similar themes). I don't think either Iron Man film equals their parallels, but the potential is there. Potential that I don't think will be met, as the MCU has no reason to change (while the DCEU has great potential marred by flawed execution), but I could see them exceeding the standard set.