5. A Beautiful Lie – Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
We have seen the Death of the Wayne family multiple times across all mediums but what Zack Snyder pulled off in the first scene of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is truly special. Let’s start with Zimmer’s amazing score. Tragedy is the one word I would use to describe the score. There is a feeling of sadness, but also anxiety, with the way it was shot. The constant switching back and forth from the funeral and his parents death was truly hainting. We see Bruce trip and with every fall the score gets even more intense.
The monologue adds even more depth as we have Bruce explain what it was like before and after the traumatic event took place. Before the death of his parents it was “perfect things, diamond absolutes” and afterwards, “what falls has fallen,” referring to himself and his perception of the world. An amazing thing about this scene is it explains the character of Batman at his most basic level by showing us that yes, it was indeed his parents death that led him down the path he chose but also why he chose the path in the first place. Bruce Wayne became the beutiful like and Batman became his new truth. It was therapeutic for him to put on the mask but it also hindered his ability to fully heal. From the stunning shots and flawless score, A Beautiful Lie takes the #5 slot.
4. Wonder Woman’s Entrance – Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Probably the most Badass entrance in comic book movie history, on par with Thor’s enterence in Wakanda in Avengers: Infinity War. I remember seeing this moment for the first time and just losing it as she entered the frame with Hans Zimmer going off on the score. It’s also our very first look at Wonder Woman on film so there is a high sense of historical weight. The moment literally screams excitement and energy as she finally makes her debut by saving Batman from Doomsday. The moment is set up perfectly as hope is lost and Wonder Woman is the catalyst to bringing it back. Although we don’t see much of Diana before this moment, we do get a glimpse of her mentality. We learn later on that she walked away from mankind so this was a return to war and heroism. Once again, the combination of Snyder, Fong and Zimmer combine to make this moment absolutely amazing.
3- Superman’s First Flight – Man of Steel
After a long personal journey to found out who he was meant to be, we finally see Clark with the iconic “S” on his chest during the flight scene of Man of Steel. There was an intense build up to see him in his full glory and the flight scene gives you exactly that. We get a full shot of him in the suit, beautifully designed by Michael Wilkinson, while with Jor-El explains how powerful he is and what his place in the world could be.
When we think of Superman on the most basic level, it is as a man that can fly, so seeing Superman learn how to fly is exhilerating for any fan. Zack Snyder pays homage to the past as Superman begins to take huge leaps, still not fully grasping his potential. He stumbles and falls until he finallty takes off behind Jor-El’s words. When he finally takes off the ground, the score makes it feel like a triamphant celebration that he is FINALLY SUPERMAN now. He was grounded for roughly 45 minutes, so the satisfaction of finally seeing him soar through the air is everything a Superman was waiting got. The kid in both Clark and the audience jumps out simultaneously as Superman lets out a huge smile as he makes laps around the world.
2- Superman’s Sacrifice – Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Man of Steel was a journey of Clark finding out who he is and Batman v Superman is a story of him navigating the world with that reality. The whole movie is him trying to come to grips with the responsibility of being Superman. With the pressure of the world and the manipulation of Lex Luthor, we see him fall into doubt of whether or not the world is better off without him. This deconstruction ineventibly leads him to the seclusion of a mountain where he finds Pa Kent explaining to him the world is broken and sometimes trying to fix something can break it in other ways. What grounded both of them was realizing that the people they love are worth it. Even though the world can be unkind, you have to take responsibility that it is indeed your world at the end of the day.
Nothing speaks to this like his sacrifice again the end. Clark telling Lois “This is my world, you’re my world” is basically him realizing his own destiny. Thematically, this moment is the apex of what Superman can be as a symbol. Add to this the visuals and Hans Zimmer score and you have the greatest live action Superman scene of all time in my opinion.
1- “Martha” – Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
This will probably come as a shocker to most people as this scene can easily be seen as the most divisive moment in the entire DCEU. Loved by some, but hated by others, the Martha moment is almost synonymous with Batman v Superman as a whole in pop-culture. Yet, many fail to give the scene the proper context in relation to the theme of the film. Bruce has lost himself in his war against Superman. He sees Clark as a threat that can burn the world to the ground and his powerlessness leads him to the darkest he’s ever been. Add to that the manipulation of Lex Luthor and his vision is completely clouded to the point where he doesn’t see him as human. “You were never a God. You were never even a man” clearly shows his psychology towards Superman.
The fight between them is one of immense emotion rather than just physical strength. At their core they are both heroes. But the psychological circumstances of both of them is what causes them to fight. It is only fair that their fight would only end if the psychological circumstances can change. Now one may ask how does this all link to the death of his parents and the answer is Superman’s destruction in Metropolis basically brings back the death of his parents into his psychology.
Thematically it made perfect sense for Batman to go into a trance as Superman asks him to “save Martha”. As we see in the flashbacks, Zimmer’s score kicks in and you see how much this has really affected Bruce. Once again, it comes down to a beautiful lie. This is a moment of realization that sets up Clark and Bruce them to become finally become friends like in other iterations . The depth, score, and thematic genius is what makes this scene my favorite of the group.