Batman v Superman disappoints with 'lukewarm' response after European premiere
It may be one of the most anticipated blockbusters of the year, but critics have given a lukewarm response to Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice after its European premiere.
Ben Affleck and Britain's Henry Cavill walked the red carpet in London on Tuesday, where press interviews were cancelled in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Brussels.
The new film is Affleck's first outing as Gotham's masked vigilante, whose vendetta against Cavill's Man of Steel leads to the ultimate superhero showdown.
Geoffrey Macnab, in the Independent, praised the "full-blooded performances" of the two leading men but described the film as a "convoluted affair".
"It pulls in far too many directions at once," he wrote.
"There is also a lingering suspicion that both these superheroes work better when they're flying solo."
Kate Muir, in the Times, gave the film two stars and said the "finger of shame" should be pointed at director Zac Snyder.
"Snyder is on a CGI-high, assaulting the viewer with noise and fury, overloaded by Hans Zimmer's Wagnerian score," she wrote.
David Edwards, in the Mirror, gave the film three stars as he criticised the "muddled storyline" which made it "hard to root for either superhero".
"Batman's grudge against Superman feels like it's been contrived to set up an encounter that is less iconic fight and more exhibition match," he wrote.
Awarding the film three stars, Andrew Pulver, in the Guardian, claimed Affleck "acquits himself pretty well" as Batman and the influence of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight "still looms large".
Meanwhile, the Sun, which also gave the film three stars, branded the match up of Batman against Superman as "super unequal" in favour of the Man of Steel.
But the newspaper hailed the performance of Gal Gadot in her role as Wonder Woman, describing her as "all the leading men are not - warm and funny".
Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice can be seen in cinemas from Friday.