This movie is interesting. I grew up reading these comics, and these characters always touch a certain chord in my life. To hear about two iconic figures clashing head to head makes some people pause. My daughter absolutely refuses to go because it seems to be about infighting between a close knit group. She boycotts the violence and the idea of brothers fighting against each other. However, the commercials for the movie paint a totally different story — of course, they do!
Superman is coerced by Lex Luthor to mortal combat with Batman to save his mother, Martha. Lex had kidnapped his mother earlier. After his mandatory meeting, Lex allotted one hour to either win his fight with Batman, or to die in the process. If he refused to fight, Martha would die. If he lost the battle, Martha would die. Only by winning the combat would he win her life. What was he supposed to do? He had to fight to the death.
For his part, Batman was also prepared to fight to the death. He has his super-heavy-duty combat armoured suit complete with flashlight eyes. He stole a chunk of kryptonite and fashioned a kryptonite vapour/smoke bomb, as well as a kryptonite spear. Blasting Kryptonite smoke in Superman’s face reduces his powers enough to give Batman an edge. He was ready to plunge the special spear in Superman’s super heart when he gasps he was trying to save Martha. This throws Batman into a batty PTSD tailspin, as his own mother’s name was Martha. Do all super heroes have mothers with the name of Martha? Why, he wonders, is Superman talking about Batman’s mother?
Enter stage left, Lois Lane, who explains that this is Clark Kent’s mother. Now things fall into place quickly.
The two caped crusaders hatch a plan for the Dark Knight save Mrs. Kent, while Superman battles the uber-super bad guy. You see, Lex prepared for this battle in his own way by resurrecting Zod’s body into a gigantic monster who absorbed any kind of energy thrown at it, using it to become stronger and bigger. It is only by retrieving the kryptonite spear that Superman is able to save the world. Somehow, Wonder Woman is involved, and has lassoed the villain in one place so Superman can use the green javelin to plunge it into the heart of the monster. In the process, Superman dies. He is, remember, also affected adversely by kryptonite.
Everyone cries. There are two funeral processions, one very elaborate one in Washington DC for the death of Superman, and one very simple one — one might say akin to the Amish simplicity — in Kansas for Clark Kent. Lois gathers a handful of dirt and after some hesitation, she tosses it onto the simple casket. As the movie ends, Lois walks away, the camera pans and zooms in to focus on the handful of dirt — which begins to ever-so-slightly vibrate and lift off the coffin.
The movie does have lots of violent scenes, of course. How can you have a battle to the death without one? I thought the actor who plays Lex Luthor did an awesome job. His facial expressions and tics were superb! Lois also was great. Ben Affleck did OK as Batman, but I thought it was a bit cheesy. The costuming was a little thick, I thought.
The moral of the story is still good. The super heroes fought each other for a noble cause, at least on the part of Superman. I’m not sure why Bruce Wayne wanted to fight.
Here is a synopsis of the fight from Den of Geek.
But why are they fighting, anyway?
Well, the easy answer is that Batman is a paranoid, borderline fascist to begin with, and watching one of his buildings come tumbling down while he was helpless to do anything about it fueled his rage and made him come out of retirement. But an apparent suicide mission against Superman seems extreme, even for him.
I think my daughter would love to see the story.