3 of the Most Epic Scenes in the same Superhero Movie Slammed by Critics
What are the 3 best scenes in Superhero movies? Hint: They're in the same film and critics hated it.
Three of the best scenes in superhero movie history are in Batman Vs. Superman. There I said it, the best scenes. These scenes are a big part of why this movie felt so fun to most fans. Still, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice remains a lightning rod among fans and critics. My own feelings being quite mixed. The movie was by my own evaluation an epic, exciting visual exploration of a crowded, confused, and convoluted story. BvS was highlighted by some very bright spots that stand up against any other superhero movie scenes to date, including all the epic Marvel bits. Here are the three scenes (and a BONUS) that stand proud among the modern pantheon of superhero epics
1. Best Combat in a Fight Scene: a Brutal Batman
While I enjoyed the combat in all the Dark knight trilogy of films and the hordes of eye candy in the MCU, nothing compares to the Dawn of Justice for the best combat in a fight scene. It may be the best fight sequence in a superhero movie ever and is certainly the best combat in any Batman fight sequence. A brutal gadget wielding fighting master, Batman tearing through mercenary thugs doesn’t get much better than this scene. Entering through the floor, disabling firearms and leveling the playing field with sticky bombs and using his batclaw to throw a box across the room were all as powerfully “Batman” as we’ve seen on the big screen. It was brutal. It was powerful. It was epic. If you’ve ever played or watched the Arkham video game series, you know what I’m talking about. They perfectly mirrored the combat in those games while keeping it grounded enough to enjoy. This Batman fights not with rage or to fight harder like Christian Bale’s Batman, but with the brutality of a man who believes he is part criminal and part weapon of vengeance. Is there a better fight scene in any other superhero movie?
2. The Sorrow of Being Superman
In contrast to the adrenaline rush of #1 on this list, this scene is about an elegant and quiet characterization of one of the most iconic DC heroes. It is one of my favorite scenes in this movie and in any Superhero movie. This Superman is not concerned with an alter-ego in the same way as any other cinematic version. Snyder and Cavill’s Superman is in a more modern portrayal. He is more openly alien, foreign, separate, and detached from his humanity and humankind. It’s the real pain beneath the symbol of hope. No more powerfully is this felt than when he stands alone amidst an explosion that poses no threat to himself, but claims the lives of the people that he has at every turn fought to save, certainly in his perspective. While he is rooted in growing up in Smallville with the Kent’s and in BvS with Lois Lane, Superman’s pain is that he is alone, deeply and truly alone. That is the journey Snyder and the JL team are setting Superman on through these films, and this scene beautifully and quietly characterizes Superman in a way audiences have never scene. He is physically an impervious god to humanity but emotionally he is all but human and feels completely alone because of this dichotomy. I love this scene and this much more complex Superman.
3. Wonder Woman Wows!
Back to the adrenaline pumping, heart thumping action. WONDER WOMAN! I had my doubts if they could capture the Amazonian warrior woman. I thought it was possible-to-likely that Gal Gadot would look frail and the combat would look weak compared with Superman and Batman. No need to worry on this one because BvS nailed it. She was powerful, forceful, and her movements were spot on. Snyder definitely delivers with iconic action and imagery. Wonder Woman enters the DC Universe with style leaping into battle, slashing swiftly and powerfully across the screen. Certainly the greatest female superhero action scene ever and one of the best in any superhero movie. BvS was a great lead in and promotion of Wonder Woman. I’m psyched to see Diana in her own movie.
SUPERflix BONUS: The Wonder Woman theme and the score
To continue with my excitement around seeing Wonder Woman shine on screen, the soundtrack was absolutely incredible. Wonder Woman’s leap into battle is set to thumping tribal war drums conjuring up images of greek warriors while the slashing guitars mirror her fighting style sending the audience’s adrenaline through the roof. EPIC! The great Man of Steel theme is peppered throughout the film helping give resonance and emotion while the Wonder Woman theme ramps up the adrenaline flavoring her enthralling entrance into battle. The strength of emotion and a more complex world with deeper characters is where the DC Universe can separate itself from Marvel’s popcorn comic book movies, and the soundtracks of MOS and BvS really highlight one way that strategy really works. It is unfortunate that it appears Hans Zimmer bowing out of future superhero films. This soundtrack was rivaled only by Man of Steel and The Dark Knight.