Sunday, October 07, 2018

Two unnecessary movie reviews

What's that?  Drunk, rich fratboy became a judge at the Supreme Court after all?   I have brief comments to make about that, but later.

Meantime, perhaps I can't review it fairly, but I did try watching Superman V Batman Batman v Superman (sorry, I care so little about it I got the name around wrong) on free-to-air TV on Friday.

As I tried explaining to my son (who likes Christopher Nolan's Batmen and talks about wanting to see the Joker movie), I can't get engaged with any incarnation of Batman.   There's just a wall of superhero scenario credibility that I can't break through for this character - I find Superman and Wonderwoman more believable despite the silliness of the former's physics and the latter's mythological status.   Apart from not caring for dark angst as a key feature of a superhero character, I reckon Batman's problems in large part revolve around the super-villains:  Lex Luther or even Green Goblin are more credible than a Gotham City full of Batman level ridiculous costumed superheroes.

That said, even starting on the basis that I would not enjoy it, Ben Affleck's Batman seemed particularly bad:  body too chunky, personality too charmless, and the deep, rasping voice in costume particularly over the top.  

Looking at director's Zack Snyder's body of (directorial) work, I can safely say he has a sensibility that in no way appeals to me: dour; in DC world - determined to treat Superman as a God/Jesus stand in; and even cinematography that grates.

Anyway, I fell asleep just as the titular fight scene was set up, and I kept half waking for what seemed an eternity of loud noise and CGI fire and explosions.  My son got bored before it started too, and went off to have a shower.  I woke to see funeral scenes for Superman.  I don't think I missed anything that would change my mind that it was a dud movie:  which is pretty much my reaction to anything featuring Batman.

The second more positive review:

Solo - the first serious commercial flop of the Star Wars universe.

I thought it was OK story and acting wise, but there was clear room for improvement (with emphasis on the word "clear", as you will shortly understand).

It would seem everyone suspects the first directors were likely sacked for not treating the material reverentially enough.  But really, I think it could have benefited from more laughs.   It wasn't without humour, and I liked one big joke near the end in particular, but I still think a few more big laughs would have lightened it up more.

And speaking of light - what was going on with so much murky cinematography?   I know that home LCD TVs can have an issue with low light scenes at the best of times, but I see now that people who saw it at the cinema were posting about how they found it distractingly dim too.  Someone wrote an article about how digital projection in cinemas was not being checked enough, and that's why it looked so dark in so many cinemas.

So, it's not just me - lots of people hated the lighting, and I would guess that it alone accounted for a lot of poor word of mouth.  Who is this cinematographer Bradford Young?  Oh, he's a black, young-ish guy, and he doesn't seem to have done anything else I have seen except Arrival. I wasn't overly impressed with the looks of that movie either - but he clearly seems to like working with fog and mist.

Honestly, they shouldn't have sacked the directors - they should have sacked Young.

Having said that, in CGI terms, when they were bright enough, I thought a lot of the film looked pretty terrific.  But good CGI in certain sequences is not enough to bring in a crowd these days.   (It pretty much used to be - when they first started to be deployed in the late seventies.)

So, more or less worth seeing, and I'm sort of sorry that it seems to have killed the potential for a sequel in the Han Solo story.

1 comment:

not trampis said...

Unnecessary movies more like it