enter desired name wrote:QR_BBPOST
- I dont want to get down but I just cant bring myself to get excited over this stuff anymore. I dont think they'll learn anything from BvS and just plow on with this dark, depressing universe they're building.
This is super unnecessary what with how they went all out on the Jesus imagery in Man of Steel and then doubled it in BvS.
Darkseid is a "force of nature", and is impending arrival is described as "apocalyptic" with biblical undertones
I could knit pick all day to be honest and i'm hoping I can get out this apathetic feeling I currently have towards DC Movies. Time will tell but I just see the same crap all over again.
And now I hear Geoff Johns is helping write the Batman solo film...god dammit.
- Same with the Savage part MCR (if I may call you that).
And I pretty much agree with you aden, although...permission to go into an essay length response that sounds like I've written it for my film theory class or something? Again--all personally opinion after this point:
Anyways, all the criticism that I've given the film has mostly been directed towards Zack Snyder, and upon further reflection I don't think that's very fair. Snyder isn't the sole cause of my problems with the DCEU so far, though I think there's numerous visual and directorial issues present that hamper his films. But I think he's just a symptom of the larger cause--which is the scripts. In my opinion, the DCEU has been saddled with some of the worst scripts to hit the superhero genre since Akiva Goldsman.
I won't get too much into the idea of auteur theory since that's in of itself an essay length topic only to say that I think it's utter bunk and that the primary creative force driving the picture varies from movie to movie. But the only reason I bring it up is that DJ mentioned (accurately) that the screenwriter is at the bottom of the creative totem pole for film production...sometimes. Like I said, it depends on the writer and it depends on the director (and producer/actors/even the editor to an extent etc etc). But while writers may be at the bottom of the barrel, the screenplay isn't--whether it's the first draft or the ninth draft from the fourth uncredited script doctor, the 120 or so sheets of paper that the director gives to the actors constitutes the most important part of the film that doesn't the actual filming equipment itself. While there are always exceptions since movie making a clash of ego's more often than it is a collective work of art, really good writers rarely have their screenplays altered beyond a few scene cuts and a few lines of dialogue being changed. The less talented the writer, at least as shown through the screenplay they've written, the more likely it is that they'll be bumped to a "story by" credit while the screenplay itself gets credited to Aaron Sorkin or something.
David Goyer is a bad writer. He's a hack to the greatest extreme--someone who passes himself off as a Hollywood insider who knows comics and comics characters when in actuality said knowledge is so superficial you'd think you were talking to a parent spying on their kids at a comics convention. He also doesn't know how to write, seemingly believing that his screenplays are somehow elevated to art level by having non-linear elements present without having even the slightest understanding of how non-linear storytelling actually works. Pulp Fiction and Tarantino films in general use non-linear storytelling to show events happening simultaneously from different perspectives in order to let audiences learn something new about a scene the more times it's shown. Kurt Vonnegut (since I always have to bring him up) used non-linear storytelling in Slaughterhouse Five as a deliberate commentary on the nature of free will and moral responsibility. There's a method to their madness--Man of Steel on the other hand jumped around in such haphazard ways that any character development, emotions, and eventually all semblances of narrative coherency ground to a complete halt, and the only reason they did seems to be because it would make the narrative seem "serious" and "art housey". That's just the structure of his screenplays--I could keep going on about his actual characters, protruding themes that are conveyed solely through exposition as opposed to action, or the fact that his dialogue would make mediocre fanfic writers blush, but I won't.
As I said, bad writers get their screenplays re-written--sometimes by other writers, sometimes by the director. This is what happened with the Dark Knight Trilogy--the original story itself was written by Goyer, but the moment Nolan came into the picture (someone who is himself not necessarily a great writer either) he re-wrote the screenplay (even bringing his brother into the process) until all Goyer got credit for was the story, nothing else. This didn't happen with Man of Steel--that screenplay was all Goyer's, with some story input from Snyder. Why? Because Snyder really doesn't know how to write. Almost all of his movies have been saddled with poor scripts but the biggest stinker of them all is the one he wrote himself (Sucker Punch). He's not a good enough writer himself nor a narratively focused enough director to do the re-writes himself, so with Man of Steel there weren't any re-writes, and it showed. With Batman v Superman, apparently at the insistence of Ben Affleck, Chris Terrio was brought in to unfuck the screenplay, but like I said in a post on one of the other forums, he didn't do enough to bump Goyer totally off the "written by" credit. I don't know if Snyder didn't want him to or Terrio wasn't given enough time between re-writing the script and the start of filming, but Goyer had enough of his grubby handprints on the script for Batman v Superman to get a full writing credit.
And it shows.
I don't particularly like Zack Snyder's visuals either since, personal opinion again, it over-uses CGI and slow motion and is more concerned with setting up a pretty picture than it is actually directed the action in a coherent way. He's not an actor's director and I think that's a big reason why Jesse Eisenberg's Luthor was, again in my opinion, laughably horrid. That being said, I'm starting to think that we really can't blame him for the narrative problems of either Man of Steel or Batman v Superman--to me, he's the kind of director that is pretty hands off with the screenplay and focuses more on what pictures he gets in his head than how he interprets the writers story. Which is fine so long as you have a good writer, but for most of his career, he hasn't.
So with that really long piece of shit essay that makes me sound like a pompous asshat, I will say this--I do think there's reason to hope. Batman v Superman didn't leave the DCEU on strong footing in my opinion (death is cheap, Lex is ruined, they're rushing Darkseid etc etc), but all the pieces are there for a really, really good bunch of movies. Terrio is completely taking over scripting duties for Justice League Part One (he might not return for Part Two though), and the cast of this franchise is excellent (in addition to pretty much being family like already, which is good for chemistry). Snyder's more questionable directing tendencies can be counter-acted by a good director like Ben Affleck being on set or by George Miller, who hopefully pushes the virtue of practical effects onto the movie as well. If the script lets Henry Cavil be the Superman I think we all know he can be (considering how he acts during interviews), then there's another big problem I have with BvS down the drain as well.
All the DCEU needs is a good script, and if Terrio can deliver, then we're back on track.
If Goyer is still allowed on set though, then the movies are going to continue sucking badly and the franchise will be dead in the water by the time 2019 rolls around.
At least in my opinion.
Sorry for the extra-long editorial.
First off (do we really need all the endless spoiler tags?), Aden, don't be so worried about dark. They said before B v S was released that Justice League will be lighter (straight from the mouth of Terrio, who called B v S the darker, middle chapter), the director has said Aquaman will be too, and the producers have said the same of Flash, Shazam and Cyborg. Wonder Woman is in World War I so of course its going to be dark, you can't make a movie in that setting all light and fluffy. And Suicide Squad is a movie about very hardened criminals a la The Dirty Dozen. It'll be dark, but it'll also have a sense of humour and fun about it. Can't speak of Justice League 2 as no writer is confirmed yet, and nothing is really known yet about Green Lantern Corps. But in summery this isn't Marvel where every film will look and feel exactly the same, its just that the two we've had so far are the same creative team.
Now, EDN. Surprisingly enough, I don't agree with some of your points. I have to say, I love both movies so far. In fact, I've probably watched Man of Steel more in the last couple of years than any other movie, and I went into it not liking Superman. I think its a very good film, and my opinion on B v S is already stated. But, unlike I have done some of your other rants on this, I don't disagree with you 100%. Once you overcome the shock of that, I'll explain.
While I like the films, based on the complaints I have heard (and admittedly not shared), I would say its the script and not the directing that's the problem. And when I say directing, I mean translating the script onto pictures on film, not the overall picture. I haven't seen all of them, but I do like Snyder's directing to the point where he's one of the few (probably only 2, 3 or 4) directors going where seeing his name on the credits is enough to make me want to watch a film if I get the chance. I think his visuals are the very best going at the moment. So while there is still some to disagree with, I actually quite liked seeing some of what you say in that last half.
And I can assure you that Goyer is out of the picture. It wasn't actually Affleck who brought Terrio in. I'm not sure if it was the Snyders, Chuck Roven or someone at Warner Bros., but they booted him themselves in favour of Terrio, and that helped sell the scripts to Ben as he said he has faith in what Terrio delivers. I suspect you're right that B v S is mostly Goyer's work with some scenes / dialogue rewritten (first one that leaps to mind as a candidate is Granny's Peach Tea), but Justice League is all Terrio. In fact, I suspect its the fact the producers didn't like Goyer's ideas for Justice League that lead to him getting booted, as I hear Terrio ignored everything Goyer had on that one and went his own way.
And just to sign off, great to hear you've still got some hope there EDN pal, because personally I think we're in for a real treat!
Figured after recent times the foot of my posts needed a pun, so I had to shoehorn one in.