Movie review: “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” (2016)


“You see, Clark Joe, what we call ‘God’ depends upon our tribe, because God is tribal. God takes sides! No man in the sky intervened when I was a boy to deliver me from daddy’s fist and abominations. I figured out way back that if God is all-powerful, He cannot be all good. And if He is all good, then He cannot be all-powerful…and neither can you be.”

I began sharpening my metaphorical knives in preparation for Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice from almost the moment it was first announced; from the moment Ben Affleck was controversially tapped to slip into the departing Christian Bale’s cowl as the caped crusader; in truth, from the moment the (approx.) fourth hour of Superman origin redux/endurance grit-a-thon Man of Steel’s overbearing climax began and my face more or less went numb. You didn’t need to be a prognosticator to feel something in the wind besides dust and falling debris. There was simply no way that grim, audacious, titanic experience would prove to be a standalone anything. Although technically a Man of Steel sequel, Dawn’s above title billing is surely no accident. Continue reading “Movie review: “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” (2016)”

Movie review: “Gone Girl” (2014)

gone girl

“I will practice believing that my husband loves me…but I could be wrong.”

Seen at a macro level, his suburban setting for a fleeting early moment obscured by suspiciously placed, some might even say staged, clouds, David Fincher’s Gone Girl still appears to be operating on multiple levels at once. Is the film a slightly higher than standard issue twisty police procedural? Is it a deliberately paced, closely observed yet still strangely aloof portrait of the disintegration of a storybook romance and marriage? Is it an unsubtle treatise on the perversity and pervasiveness of today’s reality TV/24-hour news culture, which will tar and feather the presumed innocent on the flimsiest pretense, disregarding or suspending best journalistic practices in the process, and stoke the fires of public outrage ever higher with victims both tragically real and imagined, solely in the name of ratings? The simple answer is yes to all three, but Gone Girl goes much, much deeper, pressing and probing psychologically and running in expected directions in unexpected ways. Continue reading “Movie review: “Gone Girl” (2014)”