The Future of DC Films (Updated)
Update: Trailers for Wonder Woman and Justice League have been added.
This post contains Batman v Superman spoilers.
Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment have unveiled the Justice League film and shared a number of details that should please fans, whether or not they approved of Man of Steel or Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
They confirmed that the villain will be Darkseid's Uncle and General of his armies, Steppenwolf, who will lead an army of Parademons in search of three Mother Boxes. They revealed that the Mother Boxes and are in Themiscyra, Atlantis, and within the character Cyborg. It was revealed that the film will be a "complete story" and not half of a two part film as originally announced. The film will have a much lighter and more fun tone than Batman v Superman. Superman will have a smaller role, but one that will still be very important within the film. Finally, they revealed the synopsis for the film which reads as follows:
"Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to find and recruit a team of metahumans to stand against this newly awakened threat. But despite the formation of this unprecedented league of heroes—Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash—it may already be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions."
The details shared by the filmmakers should be welcomed by everyone whose a fan of these great characters. If you hated Batman v Superman, the issues that you had are known to the filmmakers and they're doing everything they can to address them. If you liked what Zack Snyder has done so far, then you shouldn't have a problem with what's happening going forward.
I had a mixed opinion of Batman v Superman, but I did enjoy it overall. I enjoyed the story, the action, and the performances, especially Ben Affleck as Batman. Gal Gadot's debut as Wonder Woman was fantastic as well. The only performance I didn't care for was Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor and it's not his fault. Eisenberg did a great job with what he was given, but it's what he was given that's the problem. I agree with the chorus of fans who wished for a more DC Animated Universe style Luthor played by Mark Strong or Bryan Cranston. I also agree with the "too dark" criticism because the execution was terrible. The story of hero corruption would've been easier to digest had they portrayed Superman with less angry angst in Man of Steel and Batman v Superman. Cavill has done a very good job, but if Zack Snyder had kept more of the classic boy scout Superman in this new version, then the very welcome exploration of xenophobia and corruption would have been a bigger hit with the fans. Further explanation into Batman's violence and willingness to kill also required better explanation, even though that aspect of the character is true to the comics after Jason Todd was killed by the Joker. All of the criticism leads me to the upcoming Ultimate Cut of the film.
Warner Bros. is releasing a three-hour "Ultimate Cut" of Batman v Superman that will hopefully improve on if not downright fix the problems within the movie. The Ultimate Cut was recently leaked online and a number of details were revealed about the new version of the film. In summary, a number of the criticisms have been corrected in the new version. Reportedly, the pacing issues stemming from bad editing have been fixed and the film no longer feels choppy, Superman is shown doing more classic Superman things, especially post Capital explosion, Clark's evolution as a journalist is shown, his problems with Batman are explained in more detail, and Lex Luthor's villainous plot is explained properly, removing the confusion of how everything fit together once he reveals his scheme towards the end of the movie. If this information is true and these problems are fixed, then I think the movie will enjoy a much more positive response than it did when it was released in theaters and the response will help the other DC movies coming out soon, especially Justice League.
If the Ultimate Cut ends up getting a positive response, then I think the conversation surrounding the DC movies will turn away from how much Zack Snyder sucks at these movies and people will wonder why the hell WB didn't release the Ultimate Cut in theaters in the first place. I wonder how vindicated Zack Snyder will feel if people actually LIKE the Ultimate Cut and started criticizing WB for undercutting his version because they didn't think fans wanted a three hour movie. I won't speak for other fans, but I don't care how long a movie is as long as it's good. Some movies only need 90 minutes and some need three hours. If Batman v Superman needed to be three hours, then it should've been three hours, and the Ultimate Cut might prove it.
As for the future, I am excited for Suicide Squad and Wonder Woman. I hope that both movies end up being hits and they spawn sequels. However, the most important film in this equation is Justice League. I loved the details revealed by Snyder, Affleck, and the rest of the crew. I like that they're not using Darkseid right away, I like the new focus on being more "fun" and less "grim and dark," I like that it's a stand-a-alone film and not half of a two-part movie, and I like that Superman appears to be getting the Hulk treatment in that he's going to be held off in marketing and saved for the movie. His return should be triumphant and epic within the film. As for the marketing, he should be seen sparingly in the trailers just like how Marvel held off on showing Hulk, Vision, and Spider-Man in the marketing for the first Avengers, Age of Ultron, and Civil War, respectively. In addition, Darkseid being saved for another film is a great idea for the future of the series because they now have something to build up to just like what Marvel has done with Thanos. DC can build a trilogy of Justice League films and fill in the spaces between with the individual hero films that could lead up to a DC Universe showdown with Darkseid. Since Steppenwolf is the villain of the first movie, I hope the Legion of Doom are used for the sequel, and then they can close out the trilogy with everyone in the movies taking on Darkseid.
I want these movies to succeed because we all win as fans if Marvel and DC are making quality movies at the same time. That breeds competition between them at the box office and will keep them both on top of their game for years to come. If Justice League is a disaster though, then it's back to the drawing board for DC and I have no idea how they get on track. They can make Batman movies as long as they want because it's Batman, but it would be nice if the rest of DC got their due at the theater. We'll find out if they sink or swim on November 17, 2017.
- Justice League Logo and Synopsis Revealed - IGN
Warner Bros. and DC Films have let loose their parademons, revealing a ton of information about the Justice League movie today.