Wonder Woman bails out a battle-fatigued Batman and Superman in Warner Bros.’ latest DC Comics-derived extravaganza.
Todd McCarthy writes: The increasingly turgid tales of Batman and Superman — joined, unfortunately for her, by Wonder Woman — trudge along to ever-diminishing returns in Justice League. Garishly unattractive to look at and lacking the spirit that made Wonder Woman, which came out five months ago, the most engaging of Warner Bros.’ DC Comics-derived extravaganzas to date, this hodgepodge throws a bunch of superheroes into a mix that neither congeals nor particularly makes you want to see more of them in future. Plainly put, it’s simply not fun. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice grossed $872.7 million worldwide last year, apparently about enough to justify its existence, and the significant presence of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman in this one might boost its returns a bit higher than that.
Fatigue, repetition and a laborious approach to exposition are the keynotes of this affair, which is also notable for how Ben Affleck, donning the bat suit for the second time, looks like he’d rather be almost anywhere else but here; his eyes and body language make it clear that he’s just not into it. For his part, Henry Cavill’s Superman, left for dead and buried in 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (we see the grave of Clark Joseph Kent more than once), isn’t resurrected until the second half, and it takes considerably more time for him to snap into action.
That leaves things mostly in the capable hands of Wonder Woman, who’s just as kick-ass as she was this summer but in a less imaginative, one-note way. The good news is that Jesse Eisenberg’s embarrassingly misguided Lex Luthor from the previous outing is nowhere to be seen.
So what are we left with here? With all the characters that need to be introduced, the virtually humor-free script by Chris Terrio and Joss Whedon (who was brought on to complete directing duties after Zack Snyder had to leave for family reasons) less resembles deft narrative scene-setting than it does the work of a bored casino dealer rotely distributing cards around a table. Everyone is very downcast in the wake of Superman’s unimaginable fate and there’s naturally a new villain threatening to bring the world to an end, a big meanie named Steppenwolf (voiced by Ciaran Hinds). So Bruce Wayne, with Diana Prince’s assistance, must put together a new team to save the world yet again. Read the rest of this entry »
Rhett Allain writes: There is a reason Superman is called “super”. He has super-strength and super-speed. He flies, and he is mostly indestructible. He can shoot laser-like things from his eyes. Finally, he has some type of X-ray vision. Although comic book scholars have debated Superman’s vision before, let’s consider how it could work.
How Do Mere Mortals See?
There is one important aspect of human vision. In order to see an object, light has to go from that object to the eye (light in the visible spectrum). The light from that object can be either reflected light or the object can emit its own light. But either way, the direction of this light is from the object to the eye. This is important.
The eye is only a receiver of light—there isn’t some type of “vision ray” that shoots from the eye. I only point this out because it’s actually an idea that some people have about light. Ask yourself this question:
You are in an absolutely dark room (with zero light sources) for some extended period of time. What do you see after a while?
The answer is that you will see black and nothing but black. Black is the color our brains associate with the lack of light. However, many people will give an answer that you will some some stuff after your eyes adjust.
Perhaps their answer is based on their previous experiences (you rarely get an absolutely dark room) but also on their idea that the eyes do the seeing and can adjust to new situations.
What About X-Ray Vision?
We can make X-ray images. That’s not science fiction. Here’s how it works. If you take high speed electrons and shoot them at a metal surfaces, you can produce X-rays. X-rays are just like visible light except they have a much shorter wavelength (but they are still electromagnetic waves). But since X-rays have a different wavelength (and frequency) they interact with matter differently than visible light. This means that some materials (like human flesh) are partially transparent. You can use this to create an X-ray image by shining X-rays through a human and putting an X-ray detector on the other side. The X-rays don’t pass through bones as much as flesh, so you can get an image.
So, how could this work with Superman’s vision? If his eyes could detect X-rays like humans detect visible light, he would still need an X-ray source. Read the rest of this entry »
“Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” is facing a rocky start ahead of its Friday release. It holds a bleak Rotten Tomatoes percentage.
Maria Cavassuto writes: “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” is facing a rocky start ahead of its Friday release. The tentpole has met with lukewarm reviews and holds a bleak Rotten Tomatoes percentage (which continues to change as more reviews roll in). The last installments fared far better for these caped crusaders, with “Man of Steel” holding a 56% Fresh rating and “The Dark Knight Rises” holding a Fresh 87%.
“I am gobsmacked by just how dull this movie turned out to be.”
— Mike Ryan of Uproxx
Although there are a few positive reviews for Zack Snyder’s film, most are calling out the film for its messy, less-than-spectacular promised clash of comic-book titans.
Variety‘s Andrew Barker says this epic standoff never develops fully, and instead “the life-or-death battle between the two icons ultimately comes down to a series of misunderstandings.” Barker also believes Henry Cavill’s Superman pales in comparison to “the winningly cranky, charismatic presence even when out of costume” of Ben Affleck’s Batman. Visually, the film is a win. For Variety’s full review, click here.
Eric Kohn of Indiewire echoes some of Barker’s points by calling this messy and “cacophonous” showdown “basically one long teaser for the next installment.” Kohn also pointed out that while the film “doesn’t lack for inspired visuals” because “it’s filled with motion-heavy sequences rich in light and color,” a good deal of the story “reeks of the usual routine.”
Peter Travers of Rolling Stone thought this was a step up from “Man of Steel” but nowhere near Christopher Nolan’s “Dark Knight” franchise. However, even though “Batman v Superman” is probably a dream for most comic-book fans, the “kick-ass revelation” is the “wowza of a Wonder Woman,” played by Gal Gadot.
— National Review (@NRO) May 19, 2015
Original cover art by Brian Bolland from Superman Annual #12, published by DC Comics, 1986.
WORLD’S FINEST #148 (March 1965)
Art by Curt Swan & Sheldon Moldoff
Words by Edmond Hamilton
Next: Santa Claus, Fact or Fiction?
Bidding ended Sunday evening, with 48 bids received.
A copy of “Action Comics No. 1″ was put up for auction on eBay on Aug. 14, with parts of the final price going to the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. Bidding began at $1 million…(read more) Variety
A purportedly pristine copy of the first Superman comic book could fetch millions of dollars when it goes up, up and away in an auction at online marketplace eBay.
“The book looks and feels like it just came off the newsstand.”
— CGC primary grader Paul Litch
“This is an extraordinary opportunity to acquire the most valuable comic book in existence and we look forward to sharing a piece of pop culture history with the global eBay community of 149 million buyers,” Gene Cook of eBay marketplaces said in a release.
The issue being put on the Internet auction block by collectibles dealer Darren Adams was touted as the “Holy Grail” of comic books and one of as few as 50 unrestored copies in existence. Read the rest of this entry »
Note: Some good stuff can be found in IMDB’s Trivia page
By Hollie McKay
LOS ANGELES – Super-hero blockbusters have been box office hits for Hollywood for decades. But now Superman, Batman and friends are topping the charts for another industry as well.
The porn industry.
Director Axel Braun has become most in-demand X-rated director in the world by taking popular super heroes and creating super successful porn parodies. The adult film director has directed more than 400 movies since 1990, but it was his work on “Batman XXX: A Porn Parody” in 2010 that cemented his name when it became the best-selling and most-rented title of 2010. Since then, Braun has released everything from “Spiderman XXX: A Porn Parody” to takes on “Star Wars,” “The Avengers” and “Iron Man.”
And get this: he doesn’t even film the sex scenes.
Braun’s latest is “Superman XXX: A Porn Parody,” released to capitalize on Warner Bros’ “Man of Steel.”
“I felt that Superman needed to step away from the dorky, fumbling Clark Kent cliché, and gain some of those elements that made Spider-Man so appealing to me as a kid, some of that vulnerability and not-so-perfect life. I tried to humanize him a little, make him a little more relatable to the general public and at the same time parody without resorting to slapstick,” Braun told FOX411’s Pop Tarts column. “I also used characters that we haven’t been able to see yet in a mainstream big-screen adaptation, like Livewire and Silver Banshee. After all, I am selling a fantasy, and what better way to do so than bringing a bunch of obscure, sexy super-villains to life?”