It’s hard to call Christopher Nolan an expert on superhero films solely because of the work he did on Batman, though it’s easy to praise him for his trilogy since The Dark Knight was the best of the bunch and has been hailed as the best Batman movie ever by some. Don’t let Michael Keaton or Jack Nicholson hear that, even though they already have, but Heath Ledger and Christian Bale did such an awesome job that it’s hard to dispute such a claim. But even with that in mind the whole idea that Nolan knows that much about superhero movies because he directed a Batman trilogy is pushing it a bit far. But here’s the trick, most people won’t argue with him when he states that his least favorite superhero movie of all is the Justice League movie, the Joss Whedon version. There are a few things to unpack that many people are discounting and not bothering to touch on in anything but a positive manner when it comes to this movie, so here we go. Sometimes you’ve got to say it how it is, not how in the nicest way possible.
Being that he is a friend of Zack Snyder he’s not exactly impartial when it comes to Snyder’s work. Even if Nolan might be the type that doesn’t pull punches it feels likely that he’s not going to go too hard on someone he considers a friend when it comes to praising his work and pushing for him to come back and complete his movie. A lot of us can admit that the Justice League under Whedon wasn’t much of anything to look at since it was, well, bad, just a lot of bad. But pushing for the Snyder Cut along with the rest of the fans, huh boy. So many people praise the Snyder Cut when the truth is that it was a lot more exposition and very little real action, but that’s an argument for another date. The truth is that it was marginally better than Whedon’s cut since it did clear a few things up while making every single JL member look either odd, ridiculous, or somehow way too self-righteous for all the damage they still cause. Seriously, Wonder Woman blew out the side of a building to attack one guy when she could have incapacitated him easily.
If the Snyder Cut needed another handle it could have been called the Exposition Overload Cut, since there was enough story for each character in the movie that could have been used to make an entirely different movie. And the Knightmare scene at the end was a cruel tease that at this point doesn’t feel as though it’s going to happen unless the fans can summon enough nerve to whine loud enough once again to get someone to listen. Like it or not, the only reason that the Snyder Cut was successful was due to the utter hatred that people had for Whedon’s movie, and it would appear that Nolan was one of those that couldn’t help but chime in and give his two cents along with everyone else. What’s kind of amusing is that anyone stating that Nolan ‘knows what he’s talking about’ when it comes to superhero movies is basing this off of the Batman trilogy, and that’s it. That would be like saying that any director that’s taken over for one superhero movie knows something about all of them, which isn’t true in the least bit.
Until Nolan crosses the line and directs for the MCU, his superhero experience is still fairly limited, and the idea of calling directors geniuses isn’t that far off since many of them, including Nolan and Snyder, have accomplished great things. But treating them as though they’re the most knowledgeable individuals around when it comes to something that they’ve touched upon and haven’t delved into that deeply yet is kind of hard to listen to without laughing. Snyder might have more room to talk simply because he’s directed a couple of very different superhero movies. But Nolan, well, he’s dipped his feet into the well, he hasn’t plumbed the depths yet, and that’s why his word when it comes to Whedon’s movie is easy to agree with but is otherwise lacking.
There are plenty of fans out there that could if given the chance, and if they had the ambition and know-how, could possibly come up with a superhero movie that might cover a great deal of ground that a lot of directors have missed. There’s a lot of respect out there for Nolan and Snyder that’s well-earned, but there are also times when their opinions, which they have a right to, might need to be taken as just words and not the gospel that some folks appear to take them as.