With the anticipated release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021) we are all excited for this film to finally get the attention it deserves. Yes, it is clear Snyder is really into slow-mo and yes, we are unbelievably happy to not have to look at Matt Bomer’s CGI mustache anymore.
But what we are most excited about is how these two films now give us the opportunity to see how the creative decisions made during filmmaking really affects the mood the viewer is put in.
Take the scene below as an example. The hero Aquaman has just rescued a man about to die at sea and drops him off at the local bar. As he leaves he grabs a bottle of alcohol, chugs it and then, as he is the great Aquaman, is dramatically immersed into water.
The directors of these two films decided to use an entirely different approach when it came to what mood this scene should portray.
In Justice League (2017) the scene is edited with quicker cuts and rock music blaring in the background. It shows Aquaman as someone tough, someone who doesn’t take shit from anyone. As a result, his chugging down a bottle of alcohol solidifies this image.
In the Snyder cut, however, the cuts are longer, slow down, and there is a soft soundtrack. Here, Aquaman is allowed to be vulnerable, albeit a bit dramatic maybe, and his alcoholism isn’t glorified, but instead shows his suffering. This is a great example of how powerful it can be to understand mood!