The first obvious improvement in the new Ultimate Edition is clarity of plot. The theatrical cut of Batman v Superman was a cloudy mess of disjointed scenes. Motivations remained hazy as characters bounced around in their own separate stories before really coming together in an organic fashion. That’s not to say Zack Snyder has righted all the wrongs here. However the added footage better explains how the scenes connect into one overarching story as opposed to feeling like Man of Steel 2, The Batman, Pre-Justice League, and DC Origins: Lex Luthor stapled together.
The greatest addition to the film is the expanded Africa sequence. It kickstarts the entire Superman-on-trial plot. In fact, I would argue the main conflict of the film rests on this establishing catalyst – one that absolutely does not work in the theatrical cut. It’s clear how Lex Luthor masterminded this event and how the world becomes convinced Superman was responsible for the destruction. This was one of my larger complaints the first time out. This cut gets it right in tying most of the story together more clearly through this major sequence.
A few other huge improvements involve clarity of the bat-branding usage, Clark Kent’s distrust of Batman and Lex Luthor’s plan to pit the two hero titans against each other.