(Kruiser’s Permanote Description: This column is intended to be a lighthearted, short-form way to frequently connect with our cherished VIP readers. Sometimes it will be serious. Sometimes it will be fun. Sometimes it will be a cornucopia of intellectual curiosities and fascinations. OK, maybe not so much the last one. Anyway, as this is a departure for me, I’m including this explanation at the top of each post for a while. Also, non-subscribers can see the first couple of paragraphs so I am in desperate need of filler until we get to the private stuff (subscribe here). Please remember that there is a standing invitation to ask me anything in the comments. Once a week, I’ll answer.)
Since I took over editing and publishing PJ Media’s Morning Briefing in August of 2019 I’ve also picked up the habit of having the television on a lot. This was very new to me. Until the streaming era I rarely watched television at all. When I am gathering the links for the MB I’m not expending a lot of attention energy so I started having something on in the background just to keep me from talking to the cat and running the risk of him talking back and me understanding it.
I love this job, but it can get a little lonely.
Oddly, music is too distracting when I’m working on the Briefing, so I became a TV guy.
As I got back to work this past Sunday after a beautiful Saturday night hanging out in the desert with some close friends, I decided I wanted a change of pace from the usual serial killer fare I’ve been consuming a lot of lately. I decided to plunge into director Zack Snyder’s cut of the 2017 film Justice League. For those unfamiliar with the story, Snyder and his wife Deborah left the film before it was completed after the death of their daughter. The movie was turned over to Joss Whedon, whose finished product was very different than what Snyder had envisioned. Warner Brothers then agreed to let Snyder have a go at editing the movie to better reflect what he wanted to do.
The result is a gargantuan four-hour and two-minute project that seems too long to call a “movie.” The “Snyder Cut,” as it is known among fans, is a richer, darker telling of the story than Whedon’s version.
I am, admittedly, the right kind of audience for this. I grew up reading both Marvel and DC comics and I devour these movies anyway. I was skeptical about this because of the length, but having a four-hour movie on when you’re going to be working for six or seven hours isn’t bad. Also, the thought of seeing more of Gal Godot is a great sales tool for getting me to bite.
The mix of slow storytelling and action scenes is very good in this movie. If it were all one long, slow build to a climactic battle at the end, I probably would have bailed.
Ben Affleck as Batman is pretty good in both iterations of this movie. I wasn’t really moved by his performance in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. I was surprised when I liked him in the original cut of Justice League.
Ezra Miller plays The Flash, and I like this goofy, “Wow I’m just excited to be here!” version about a thousand times better than the tortured, whiny Flash that Grant Gustin plays on television. Miller’s Flash is a lot like what Tom Holland does with Spide-Man over in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He’s the wide-eyed kid with the mad skills who also provides comic relief.
I don’t like it when people look at things like superhero movies for social justice statements but a lot has been written about the differences between the way Whedon and Snyder portrayed Wonder Woman and the Amazons. I tend to agree with those claiming that Whedon’s version was lacking. Diana Prince is a stone-cold badass in the Snyder Cut while Whedon’s treatment of her was reminiscent of a perv at Walmart trying to sneak an upskirt pic with his phone while standing in the checkout line.
My headline was a little misleading. Not only did I not hate the Snyder Cut, I absolutely loved it. I’ve seen people complaining about it on social media, but all most people do on social media is complain.
It’s probably best to tackle the movie more like a mini-series if you can’t commit to all four hours at once. It’s broken into seven parts, which makes it easy to go about it that way.
This gets a solid recommendation from me. I will watch it (or parts of it) again and again, while I’ll probably never go near Avengers: Endgame for the rest of my life.
Off to find my next binge.
Oh, and I will definitely be answering some questions from the comments at the end of the week.
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PJ Media Senior Columnist and Associate Editor Stephen Kruiser is the author of “Don’t Let the Hippies Shower” and “Straight Outta Feelings: Political Zen in the Age of Outrage,” both of which address serious subjects in a humorous way. Monday through Friday he edits PJ Media’s “Morning Briefing.” His columns appear twice a week.