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Important things should matter. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Warner Bros. and Zach Snyder’s ostensive first entry in their own Marvel-esque Universe opens in wide release today. It’s a loud, dark and violent attempt to make a massive first impression that ultimately ends up being forgettable.

It’s been 18 months since the events of Man of Steel and Americans are unsure whether or not to trust the all-powerful Superman (Henry Cavill) after the death and destruction he caused in Metropolis defeating General Zod (Michael Shannon). Most distrusting is Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck), who witnessed the destruction of his company’s buildings in Metropolis and deaths of employees firsthand on that fateful day.

Wayne’s distrust grows following an event in the Middle East where Superman causes a lot of collateral damage rescuing Lois Lane (Amy Adams) from terrorists. As his suspicions grows, Wayne discovers a shipment of Kryptonite being struggled in by Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) and dons his Batsuit to steal it and create a weapon that will allow him to defeat Superman.

It’s this very loose plot that sends the two greatest superheroes in the DC Universe into battle with another – a battle that is so important in the annals of film, comic and just plain pop culture that it deserves something much stronger. Something that makes sense even.

With a film of this magnitude from such a variety of standpoints, it’s surprising to see just how little time was spent creating a compelling reason for one good guy to want to wipe out another good guy. The audience is essentially asked to agree with Batman that Superman is a threat just because that’s what’s going on. It’s a suspension of disbelief that’s really too much to swallow – and this is a film that features an alien superhero who can fly.

In a situation this thin, something like a statement of the true nature of good and evil or what it means to have power no matter who is wielding it could make the film more plausible or provide a platform to make the film more powerful, but it completely ignores any such themes. Instead, it remains woefully unfocused as it meanders through one convenient contrivance after another so it can throw as much CGI up on the screen as possible in an attempt to make the film appear more impressive that it is.

This appears to be Zack Snyder’s move at this point in his career. When the story can’t be solved nor the theme furthered – it’s time to play the cartoonish CGI card to its logical endpoint in an aborted attempt to make an impact. It’s sad to think the director of Watchmen would sink to such a worn-out trope but that’s all he’s really giving us anymore.

What we don’t really get is either a Superman or Batman movie with this film. Batman is not fully realized (though not through the fault of a fine Ben Affleck) and Superman is almost a side character in Batman’s twisted logic. What could have been an interesting character study – a true contrast of the superpowered superhero with the ordinary superhero – is completely neglected in another missed opportunity.

That’s what Batman v Superman really is – a missed opportunity. With a limitless budget, any talent he wanted, and the two biggest comic book characters of all time, Snyder had the opportunity to do just about anything and he ended up with an effects-driven bore that doesn’t add any real value to the history of either of its legendary characters.

These aren’t two guys you can just toss aside.