Batman v Superman Tops $800 Million: Why It’s Still A Disappointment

Ugh, why are we still beating this dead horse?

Scott Mendelsohn over at Forbes wrote an article puzzling over why people consider BvS a disappointment. He writes:

[B]ecause Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice came about in a post-Avengers era … it finds itself on the defensive with “just” $800m worldwide.

Now Scott, I appreciate you and your reviews. I really do. And I know that you are aware of BvS‘s flaws and that you loved Batman as a kid, so I won’t get into the well-trodden weeds about this film’s flaws. But let me help you understand why this film is a disappointment, because it is, and it isn’t Marvel’s fault.

First, your argument that The Avengers raised the bar for all superhero movies is spot on. In fact, there probably wouldn’t even be a Batman v Superman if it weren’t for the $1.5 billion haul of Marvel’s alpha team. And, yes, Iron Man and Incredible Hulk were both fortunate to come out in a pre-Avengers time when their (relatively) low grosses looked like successes. But to say that Avengers’ huge pile of cash puts BvS on the defensive is clearly missing the mark.

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‘Worldbuilding’ Is the New Bad Word in Movies

The easy thing to do after watching the dumpster fire that was Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was to go online and write a blog post calling it a dumpster fire. I’ve done my best to avoid that (though not so much with my social media accounts …) and now have let the idea of that film percolate in my mind for a few days.

But wait, Jasper, Batman v Superman was good!

No, sorry, it wasn’t. It just wasn’t. You may *like* BvS, but you may also have really bad taste.

So? It entertained me!

Yeah, I know, and that’s kind of the problem. Let me explain.

The head of Warner Bros. says that the amount of money earned by BvS shows a huge disconnect between movie critics and fans. That’s like saying the huge lines for a restaurant opening defy the fact that the food they will soon eat tastes like cardboard. A film’s opening box office has NOTHING to do with a film’s quality. Absolutely nothing. What it *does* say is (a) fans are excited about Batman, Superman and, yes, Wonder Woman, (b) movie critics’ opinions aren’t really that important most of the time, and (c) Warner Bros. has a hell of a marketing department.

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The Film Minor: Five Films to Watch After 10 Cloverfield Lane

Much has been written about the new Bad Robot flick, 10 Cloverfield Lane. Set in the same sort of downplayed, alienified universe as the original Cloverfield, the new film features a small cast of characters hiding out the apocalypse in a tiny bunker. But what do you do if you suspect one of the people you are hiding with is a monster?

10 Cloverfield Lane is an excellent film to watch if you enjoy suspenseful thrillers. Further, the director, Matt Reeves, makes good use of the enclosed environment and keeps you stuck in the head of the film’s main character in ways other filmmakers don’t bother with. For virtually all of the film, we follow Michelle (played to great effect by Mary Elizabeth Winstead) shot-for-shot with the camera echoing her own sense of attention to detail. This helps ratchet up the feelings of nervous anxiousness, particularly in an early shot (shown in the trailers) of the three bunker inhabitants eating at a dinner table. What plays out afterward is a delightful blending of paranoia and weirdness until the film’s explosive climax.

Like the original Cloverfield, once you’ve seen the movie, you’re left wanting more. So here’s a list of five movies to hold you over until the next non-sequel installment in this sci-fi series comes out (fingers crossed it’ll be soon):

Alien (1979)

By the end of 10 Cloverfield Lane, sci-fi fans have been introduced to another badass heroine. Like the original Alien, from director Ridley Scott, Michelle doesn’t become a kick ass hero because she was always prepared to be one. Instead, her situation forced her to be both creative and tough. It’s a trait played to much effect in Alien and only one thing that the two movies have in common. A second is that both films take place within tight confines, further putting pressure on the characters involved. 10 Cloverfield Lane is as much a spiritual prequel to Alien as it is a sequel to Cloverfield.

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Zootopia Isn’t So Special – And That’s Why It’s So Great

By Friday night, I began to hear it. “Zootopia is incredible!” “Zootopia is better than Frozen!” “Zootopia will be the best movie of the year!” Hyperbolic? I thought so. But still, a 99% score on Rotten Tomatoes and friends of mine raving about left me excited to see the movie. I went Saturday, watched the film and reviewed it thusly on my Facebook:

“Zootopia: Some great gags string together a pedestrian plot made worse by a grating Shakira sountrack.”

You can guess how that went over. Children wrung their hair, friends blasted me in the social sphere, and the sun turned black with ash. But the thing is, the more I talked with various people, the more they actually kinda agreed with me. The indisputable: Zootopia is funny. Very funny. Also, Shakira brings down the film. (I don’t get why John Lasseter has decided that Disney films should have music videos in them …)

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R-Rated Heroes: Dead Pool is just the new kid.

DEAD POOL!!!

He’s irreverent, sassy, crass and the first R-Rated hero to hit the silver screens!
Except… that’s not quite true.  Actually, that’s not remotely true.
So, in case you forgot or just didn’t realize; here’s a list of 5 other movies that you should watch, if you enjoyed Dead Pool.

CHECK OUT THESE R-RATED HEROES!

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