Zack Snyder seems like a nice enough guy when he isn’t making movies.
He gets along great with his fans, and he has a “normal bro” look and smile that is far more appealing than the awkward creepiness of Woody Allen.
Also, his faithfulness in principle to the projects that he takes on — at least, as far as comic books go — demonstrates a basic love for the source material.
That affection aside, his enthusiasm can override good storytelling, and now it has killed a promising franchise opportunity in the DC Movies Universe before it really had a chance to get going.
That “deadly enthusiasm,” if you will, often results in overwrought (and phony-looking) special effects extravaganzas that completely take audiences out of his movies.
Man of Steel was one of the worst offenders as far as this issue is concerned.
After providing an interesting take for the first two-thirds of the film, he gleefully dove into the CGI for a 45-minute fight sequence that looked as closely to Ed Wood as you could get on what Box Office Mojo calls a $225 million budget.
The film still made money in spite of itself, but so did Superman Returns — because, hey, it’s Superman!
Now, after a too-revealing trailer and a few frenzied comments to the press, it appears that Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is about to go down the same path.
It started when Zack Snyder responded to naysayers, who felt that he gave away too much of the movie in his three-minute trailer release.
He promised that there was “a lot of movie” that fans didn’t see in the trailers.
One particular complaint was that the clip revealed pretty much the entire trajectory of the film, right down to what will eventually bring a warring Superman and Batman together: Doomsday.
“To us, it really made sense to give [Doomsday] to the audience now,” Snyder said in comments to Entertainment Weekly. “I really wanted to make the audience a promise that… though I’m super excited and happy and fulfilled by the conflict of Batman and Superman, there’s also a bigger world to start to think about.”
This was a realization that fans already were aware of before the first teaser even hit the web. No one thought for a moment, in spite of the film’s name, that DC’s two most popular and longest-“living” superheroes would duke it out in a fight to the death, especially in their inaugural meeting.
Zack Snyder, in a move sure to win him the “Captain Obvious Award,” not only confirmed what the audience already knew, he took the “how’s it going to happen” factor out of it.
In the trailer above, the entire trajectory of the film is mapped out. Bruce Wayne (Batman) and Clark Kent (Superman) hate each other.
Audiences learn what their differences are about; how Lex Luthor will use those differences to his advantage; when the tide will turn (the threat of Doomsday appears); and who will show up to help them (Wonder Woman).
Coupled with other trailers and comments from Zack Snyder, audiences also know there will be additional superheroes and villains.
While there may be a few “surprises” locked away in just whom those “others” turn out to be, the entire plot of the film is already laid out before you get to your theater seat.
This movie had to be something special, after past failures, to start a successful DC Movies Universe to keep pace with Marvel. It had to shock us, thrill us. The trailers and press needed to prime the pump for something like we’ve never seen before.
Instead, they gave away everything and confirmed fears that this movie would be everything wrong about Man of Steel, amplified.
Is it fair to judge an entire movie based on a few trailers and interviews? Not usually. But, Zack Snyder has gone out of his way to show audiences that they really don’t need anything else to reach their conclusion.
And that puts the DC Movies Universe in a hole that it probably won’t be able to crawl out of.
What do you think, readers?
Has Zack Snyder killed this franchise before it got a chance to shine? Sound off in the comments section.