A little over three months after hitting theaters, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice arrived on home media yesterday, but it wasn't just the theatrical cut that was made available to fans. As announced months ago, there was also an extended, R-rated version released, dubbed the "Ultimate Edition." This is director Zack Snyder's preferred version, adding 30 extra minutes of content and more intense violence. It's no secret that the theatrical cut wasn't received well by a lot of fans and critics, but the Ultimate Edition aims to improve the story's reputation by providing a better overall narrative.
Three hours is definitely a long movie runtime, but in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice's case, the extended cut definitely fulfills the promise of providing more material that wasn't shown in theaters. While there are a lot of minor additions or alterations scattered throughout, here are the biggest changes that the Ultimate Edition featured.
It goes without saying, but there will be full spoilers for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice - The Ultimate Edition from this point forward.
A Longer And More Cohesive Africa Sequence
The biggest and most appreciated change in the Ultimate Edition is that the Africa sequence makes way more sense. In the theatrical cut, Superman shows up to rescue Lois from the Nairobi rebel general, and then we cut back to America, where Superman has been blamed for slaughtering innocents near the base. Unfortunately, there were a lot of pieces that didn't connect properly, but these extra minutes fix that. It turns out that general and his forces were waging a civil war against the Nairobi government, one which the United States had taken a neutral stance on. Jimmy Olsen (who is actually named this time around) was sent to negotiate an "arrangement," but his offer is refused. U.S. command then launches a drone strike at the base (at the protest of the officer in the field), but Superman destroys it before it hits.
However, before the Man of Steel arrived, Anatoli Knyazev and his men not only killed the other terrorists and nearby innocents, but also used a flamethrower to cover their tracks and make it look like Superman killed them with his heat vision. That's why Superman was blamed and why the Senate hearings began so quickly. We also later learn that Kahina, the Nairomi woman who testified before Senator Finch, was actually threatened and paid off by Lex Luthor to speak out against Superman, but she was later "taken care of" by Anatoli.