When I really sit down to think about it, I have a hard time coming up with an animated film I both enjoy and respect more than part two of the recent Batman: The Dark Knight Returns comic book adaptation. For my tastes, the film handles most-everything with class and admirable attention to detail. It’s true to its source material, characters have compelling depth without being overwrought enigmas, the pacing is expert – and though the action may not reach such wild heights as certain Nolan-helmed counterparts, said sequences remain engaging while smartly matching the film’s more cool, composed, and oft downright dispiriting mood climate. In short, it is the most smartly compiled superhero film that I am aware of perhaps outside of The Incredibles, though that is a different sort of tale entirely.
This is all relevant, of course, in light of recent events at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, where the existence of a live action Supes and Bats (do I sound cool now?) silver screen assemblage to be spearheaded by none other than Zack Snyder was officially revealed to frothing adherents ‘round the globe. I casually scrolled through the internet headlines, none-too-interested by the whole idea – that is until I saw this. The very same year that Batman: The Dark Knight Returns issues its definitive and indomitable animated masterstroke, WB decides it’s a good idea to immediately re-imagine aspects of the same tale as the followup to Man of Steel, a film that champions the very essence of “good not great.” Oh it’s on, Snyder. It’s on.
I could rave about my distaste for this path forward all day long, but instead I’ll do something constructive. If Snyder hopes to touch what Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2 has accomplished, he’s going to have to bring his A game. Here are some top priorities he ought to keep in mind.
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