I am a fan of both. Really! What a time to be alive.
This deserves kind of a lead in and I am not talking about the comics, but maybe let’s do that for a moment:
I grew up for 6 years in the German Democratic Republic – meaning the part of Germany where you had to stand in line for Bananas. I could write more about that, but leave it to people that know people from there. I came in contact with comics at around 10 years old, I had friends from ‘the city’ aka Chemnitz. Naturally they had contact, they had comics. First comic I ever held was an Avengers comic book in German ‘Die Richer’ (don’t know why they translated the names back in the day). Shortly thereafter through my ‘city friends’ X-Men and later on the book bus (a mobile library that parked every Wednesday at the train museum in my 1200 soul village) provided me with access to more: Maus, Batman , Mask, Transformers and more…
I was 14 when Superman lost his powers and came back in blue and with a different power set and bought the Justice League number 1. Shortly after Lobo and then nothing for the longest time, until I got a grasp of the English language and saved enough money to buy the Batman Essentials (Hush, Year One, The Killing Joke, Arkham Asylum, The Dark Knight Returns, The Long Halloween) and in addition Watchmen and V for Vendetta.
So I am not biased. I love both, movie-wise DC-TV (especially The Flash) tucks a bit more on my heartstrings but the Netflix Marvel shows blow everything out of the water – so here we go:
My favorite stand alone Batman movie to this day is Batman Returns – I watch it roughly once a year around Christmas and I wouldn’t skip a scene or would change a thing about it. I am linking to Rotten Tomatoes here for a reason. This movie has favorable reviews there with 80% from critics and 75% something from the regular folk.
Suicide Squad which will most likely not show in China is already being panned by critics there and the early ‘critic reviews’ also panned Batman v Superman into the ground. I cannot wrap my head around that.
If someone tells me that he or she is not impressed with Batman Returns, I can understand that. It’s a bit silly, there is this fake snow, the Burton city and elements, it’s very fantastical and I can see that this is not everyone’s cup of tea.
Meanwhile the Nolan Batman movies I find to be overrated. My favorite was (of course) The Dark Knight but with every additional watch I find myself skipping more and more scenes. The trilogy still works for me and I enjoy it as the else world story it is, but let’s be honest here – the fight scenes (apart from Bane taking Batman apart) suck. Yes, they suck. I could take this Batman down.
Let’s go down the rabbit hole. I love, love, love The Winter Soldier and Civil War, I do like Guardians of the Galaxy (and wish it would be more popular than Star Wars) and I thoroughly enjoyed Deadpool. Batman v Superman, especially the Ultimate Cut does not deserve the hat it got. It’s a great movie and that one Batman scene (you know which one) is better than any action scene a live action Batman has ever been in.
A good friend of mine pointed me to this video:
I like the Nerdwriter dude, butI disagree strongly here. The cinema cut was disappointing and it felt odd. Weirdly put together. Great scenes, great moments, monumental pictures, but it felt like every word uttered served the plot and moved it forward. Giving the butchered cut it felt weird. It was not good, it had amazing scenes, but all that was made void with the Ultimate Cut.
I like the Everything Great crew even better, especially with Zach Snyder movies. His movies are bombastic, without being shallow and hollow like the Michael Bay 8 out of 10 times.
It’s hard to put the finger on the criticism by critics. The movie is slowly paced and lacks a lot of the humor that the Marvel movies are famous for, but speaking of the Ultimate Cut here, it is so much better than half of the Marvel movies and it clocks in at a Civil War level. It’s not as good as Winter Soldier, as I have seen that on plan again without sound and sat through the hole thing. The music, the scenes coming alive from the books I read and the costumes and tone. They got it right and I am glad it is not a Marvel movie copy. I am glad it is ‘darker’, I am glad it is a different approach and I still think that Zach Snyder is the man (apart from some of the stuff he spurts out). I think he is just not the best guy to market his movies, he can come off as a bit of a meathead, but I do think he has the heart in the right place and produces the best visuals when it comes to comic book movies.
In years from now I am sure I will have watched Snyder movies a couple of more times without skipping compared to the average Marvel Studios movie (I haven’t given Age of Ultron a second watch).
Let me predict that those ‘controversial’ Snyder movies will hold up better over time.
Again I love all kinds of comics but here is my count (estimates – this is totally my way of battling this out):
Batman (1989): 5 times
Batman Returns (1992): 20 times
The Dark Knight (2008): 8 times (involving more and more skipping)
Man of Steel (2013): 10 times
Batman v. Superman (2016): 4 times
Iron Man 2 (2010): 3 times
The Avengers (2012): 3 times
Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014): 7 times
Deadpool (2016): 3 times
Captain America: Civil War (2016): 2 times
DC: 47 versus Marvel: 18
I was never a big Superman fan (that might also be why I enjoyed the Blue Superman), but after the latest movies I dig the character and you know know that I started of with Marvel. So far the DC Movies hold up better for me but quantity output is just so much higher in the Marvel camp, I just don’t think it will hold up that well.
I love both and am thrilled to be alive to see all these movies and hope that both companies succeed making movies in quality and quantity but I’d wish for more leeway on the DC side from critics. Let’s just look at music: I can’t remember a single theme, score or musical moment in any of the Marvel movies (apart from Songs in Deadpool, Iron Man and Blade) but not scores but I pretty much remember The Dark Knight Trilogy, Man of Steel and Batman v. Superman by the music tracks and scores alone.