Review: Batman v Superman

There is no doubt that DC’s superheroes are some of the most popular in the world. Whereas most had never heard of Black Panther, Deadpool or even Thor and Iron Man till the films made them famous, almost everyone knew or had heard of Batman and Superman and considered themselves fans. With this footing, it would seem perfectly sensible to assume DC has a headstart on Marvel that they would make full use of. Alas, their newest film, the rather lazily titled, “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” does little to push DC ahead. This writer, although a longtime fan of DC comics, believes that at this moment, Marvel is clearly crafting the better superhero film universe.

Director Zack Snyder’s “Batman v Superman” begins with an operatic retelling of the Wayne murders: young Bruce witnesses his parents’ death, falls into a cave, sees a swarm bats etc. the whole rigmarole. It is probably a fifteen–minute section of the film solely targeted to help the audience make a particular scene later in the film — specifically tailored for those unaware that Bruce’s mother’s name is Martha.

The films feels, for lack of a better word, unwholesome. There are somethings it gets right: a bunch of well–choreographed fight sequences involving Batman1, Snyder’s signature zooming in on Superman in mid–air, and good use of scale — when a tiny Superman cracks wide a skyscraper thousands of times his size, you really feel the impact. If only the story carried the same weight.

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Camus, from the Penguin ‘Great Ideas’ edition

It is not often that I write about the cover of a book, complete with a handful of photographs, but this is exactly what I intend to do now. Stepping back to look at the larger picture, it is just as rarely that we pause to appreciate the typesetting, designing, formatting and binding of paper books.

I think most of us readers should do this more often than jumping straight into the I recently ordered Albert Camus’ The Myth of Sisyphus on Amazon and unwrapped my package to behold one of the most beautifully laid books I have had the fortune of coming across in recent times. But I digress; I now intend to — most literally — judge the cover of a book.

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Short film, Thieves, in production

I have not written here for over a week now owing to the fact that I have been extremely busy with my upcoming short film, Thieves. And while I work on a film, I prefer to focus my emotion and thoughts to it wholly, because I have found that external stimuli can substantially affect my directing and my thought processes.

Following Origami, this new film works towards making a trilogy (of which Thieves is the second) built around the idea that landmark events — oftentimes life–changing in some manner, large or small — can occur to people anywhere, even out in wide open spaces. I call it the Outdoors trilogy.

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A list of 100 books everyone must read

The BBC, a few years ago, came out with a massive list of one hundred books everyone must read before they die, and I decided to read all the books on that list I have not yet read. One could think of this as a project, but to me it is more of a journey. But then I saw Harry Potter in third place and realised I was better off looking for a different list that was more to my taste. (Yes, I am a big fan of LOTR.)

Personally, though, I like to think of it as nourishment and it makes sense to pick the nourishments you like, so I turned to The Guardian. Sure enough, they had two lists: one made in 2003 and another updated only three months ago. I picked the latter, and started re–organising them for my convenience and started reading today with number 20: Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott. So the project — shall we all agree to simply call it an expedition? — begins today. Now.

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