When we think of superheroes, we usually imagine caped warriors who defeat bad guys and save the day. So when a movie dares to pit a superhero against another superhero, we pay attention — especially if it’s Batman (Ben Affleck) and Superman (Henry Cavill).
And in case you’re not religiously following the DC universe — or even if you are — we’ve put together a rough guide of what to expect come March 25, when “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” hits theaters. We’ve included some need-to-know tidbits, as well as possible(!) plot spoilers, so consider yourself warned.
“Dawn of Justice” Delves Deeper into Batman’s and Superman’s Psyches
If you’ve seen “Man of Steel,” it’s easier to make sense of Superman’s character in “Dawn of Justice.” If not, here’s a recap: Metropolis gets razed to the ground after Superman’s epic battle with the supervillain Zod. That’s where “Man of Steel” ends, and where “Dawn of Justice” begins. According to Entertainment Weekly writer Anthony Breznican, Superman deeply regrets the resulting carnage in Metropolis, but has no idea how to use his powers to prevent similar occurrences in the future.
Meanwhile, Batman (a.k.a. Bruce Wayne) is languishing as an underground vigilante in Gotham City. Consumed by feelings of inadequacy and anger, he turns to the most convenient target: the man single-handedly responsible for the destruction of nearby Metropolis. It certainly doesn’t help that Superman wrecked one of Bruce Wayne’s buildings in the fight, killing a good number of people.
Lex Luthor Turns up the Heat
Of course, a superhero movie won’t be a superhero movie if the plot hinges solely on the characters’ internal conflicts. So we need someone to complicate things for our two heroes – Superman’s billionaire nemesis Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg).
Without giving away much, let’s just say that in “Dawn of Justice,” Luthor orchestrates a series of events that turn the tension between Superman and Batman on its head.
Wonder Woman Will Join in on the Action
Also known as “Diana Prince” and “Princess Diana of Themyscira,” Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) will also appear in this movie. Judging by the details revealed on Movie Pilot, she will thankfully not be relegated to “support” or “love interest” status. Instead, she will play a crucial role in the dismantling of Luthor’s machinations.
Oh, and did we mention Wonder Woman is 5,000 years old, and about to retire during the events of “Dawn of Justice”? The movie will also tease a possible solo film around her, so Wonder Woman fans will have something to look forward to even if she isn’t the focus of “Dawn of Justice.”
New Yorkers can Experience the Movie in 4D
Imagine a 3D film — except that instead of feeling like you can reach out and touch the characters, you’ll also feel everything they feel.
Okay, maybe not everything. But that’s roughly what fans residing in New York will experience, if they choose to watch “Dawn of Justice” in one of the city’s first 4DX theaters, according to The Verge. The theaters will feature — among other things — motion-activated seats, scents, wind, lightning and even snow.
“Batman vs. Superman” was Directed by Zack Snyder
In case the name doesn’t ring a bell, Snyder was also the man who helmed “300,” “300: Rise of an Empire,” “Dawn of the Dead,” “Watchmen” and — wait for it — “Sucker Punch.” He’s also been tapped to direct 2017’s “Justice League Part One” and 2019’s “Justice League Part Two.” Though The Atlantic mentioned how critics dismiss his films as “high-gloss” and “carnal pandering,” there’s little question about it: The man has style — and a very distinctive style at that.
The Winner isn’t as Clear as it Seems
Batman: A billionaire who’s proficient in martial arts and all sorts of weapons money can buy (and replenish.) Superman: An alien whose abilities are, well, superhuman. No contest, right?
Actually, it’s not that straightforward. As Cavill reveals in an interview with Collider, Superman loves humans a bit too much, and that could become a liability. “He loves what they bring to the world, he loves this planet and who he lives alongside, and he wants to really, really help them,” Cavill explained. “We could go deep into the psychology of what that means and what that makes ones intentions on a daily basis when you’re a super-powered alien.”
A Different “Batman vs. Superman” Battle Going on Off-screen
On a less serious note, we have Entertainment Weekly’s two different cover photos to promote the upcoming movie. That begs the question: Ladies (and gentlemen), who rocks the cover better, Batman or Superman?
And that wraps up this guide to “Dawn of Justice.” We’ll be sure to update you of new developments when they come out. For now, let us know what you think of this piece, or of the movie, in the comments section!