The summer blockbusters continue to roll out faster than Vin Diesel on nitrous oxide, and we’re caught right in the butt of things as June finishes up. Although it seemed like the wait lasted forever, Man of Steel is at last upon us, and we can stop speculating about how awesome it is and simply TALK about how awesome it is now! Or can we? Read on to find out if I really meant what I just said there. (See that? That’s how I grab you. That’s called “TAKING” the reader!)
In today’s day and age, nobody at DC wants their heroes bouncy and happy if the Dark Knight trilogy will tell you anything. No; people want their heroes’ dark and brooding, with their nails painted black, and My Chemical Romance posters on their walls (… Remind me of what it is I see in the human race again???). Well, this is finally it. That dark-toned Superman movie you’ve always wondered about is really here. That can come at a bit of a price though, and admittedly it does in some areas, but I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s examine it for what it simply is… another fracking reboot! Unlike Amazing Spider-Man however, I think a lot of people actually WANTED a reboot of Superman after that last dud. It had potential, but it did not prevent the dud that was. Dud-dee-dud-dud-dud.
The origin story of young Kal-El (Superman for you “I don’t give a crap about your comics, you nerd!” folk. I know you’re out there…) is for the most part on par with what you’ve seen and heard in the past, whether you’re a comic junkie, a casual fan who’s watched the cheeeeeeeeeeeeezy previous movies, or some weird unholy fusion of the two, which is probably also ugly. Russell Crowe plays Jor-El (father of Le Supes), acting in a surprisingly bad-ass manor while trying to protect Clark/Superman/Kal-El/Idontcarewhatyoupick/lol from the stereotypically evil General Zodd. As we all know (but I’ll state again for those “cool” kids who are too proud to admit they don’t), Clark gets sent away in an escape pod while their home planet of Krypton is eventually left in ruins. Clark makes his life on Earth with the parental guidance of Jonathan and Martha Kent, teaching him how not to destroy the planet like a good Saiyan…, ah, I mean Kryptonian… Dragon Ball has no similarities to this… Why ever did I do that…? >>
We see a younger side of Clark, who gets picked on and bullied quite a bit, even though he could rip all the kids’ arms off without batting an eye-lash. In another interesting scene, we see a completely ridiculous bus accident, where the bus falls into a large body of water, and Clark of course comes to everyone’s rescue. Jonathan Kent actually tries to act like this is a bad thing because Clark risked others figuring out that he had special powers… Let me repeat that. Jonathan Kent SCOULDED his adopted song for saving over a DOZEN lives from drowning while trapped inside of a bus because someone “might” have discovered him. I just… Yeah, I’ve got nothing on that one. You’re a SICK man Pa Kent. SICK!!! Remind me never to ask YOU for any favors!
I should probably touch on Henry Cavill now (the guy who actually PLAYS Superman, ajhfdjhkjasfnjkhdf!). The guy knows his way around this part, and happens to play it very well. He even bore some resemblance to Christopher Reeve himself, with that ridiculously chiseled jaw, and unnaturally fit shape that all the guys look at and wonder how the hell he did it. Disturbing tweets from the fangirls aside, he really does a great job with the part. Lois is played by Amy Adams. She does her part well overall too, but there were some moments of social awkwardness that made me think she was just taken right from the world of her movie, Enchanted, and was still learning how to be a normal person instead of a singing cartoon character. She could have broken out into song for no reason and I wouldn’t have even thought it to be out of character. Srsly.
There’s also a great bit of juicy controversy regarding one of the final scenes of the film. Before I get to all of that and its juicy juice-ness, I’d like to go into the action itself. There are explosions, lots of explosions. MANY, MANY explosions! It’s not something like in the case of Transformers, where you’ll wonder if there’s anything else to the movie at all, but it is to be noted that Michael Bay probably had a boner after watching this one. I heard some complaints from others that the film was all mindless action/had no real plot/thought “This is not my Superman”/wonder “why can’t I ever get a date”/etc. I actually completely disagree with all of that. I think the action didn’t really come into the film until after the third quarter or so, where it was definitely like watching two flying Hulks going at it. However, everything before this was pretty much all story, with a few small exceptions. I don’t know where people got the notion that the entire film is nothing but action. Quantum of Solace was nothing but action. This was relatively small compared to that chase-scene extravaganza.
Now to the controversial bits you people won’t shut up about. One is that this film has little to no humor in it whatsoever. That’s a scary thing when it comes to the Superman mythos, and I admit, it bothered me a bit. I don’t mind Supes making a wisecrack once in a while, and that kind of character really took a step to the side here. The other (and the one I know I’ll hear the most bitching), is a decision Clark makes right around the end during the final fight scene. I won’t say what he did, but… wow, I did NOT see that one coming. M. Night Shyamalan could learn from this kind of twist. Now again, since I refuse to spoil this bit for anyone, I really can’t say what Superman did here, but know that it was probably not something you saw coming. I certainly didn’t. Hell, everyone in the whole theater got silent, even that annoying-ass little kid that wouldn’t stop whining. On that note, why the hell was a little kid in there? If a movie has Christopher Nolan’s name across it, you should NOT bring a child near there, unless you want to create another me… And I’ll let that action speak for itself. Look how well I turned out kids!! The burns still haven’t gone away!!! *thumbs up*
All in all, when you put it together, this is actually a pretty good film for what it’s worth, and easily one of the best Superman films ever made by default. I feel like there are many Christopher Reeve fanboys/fangirls that will write off Henry Cavill and not give him the credit he deserves for pulling off this part. But I think he was a perfect choice for this new reboot and I’m actually excited to see where they’ll go with things next (Oh, did I mention a sequel is already confirmed? Well… It IS! YEAAAH!). The pacing of the film was a little jumbly (due to the shifting between flashbacks and current scenes), and the lack of any and almost all emotion was kind of a downer. I also found it quite odd/hilarious that Superman was causing just as much destruction as the villains by the later parts of the film. He apparently cares though… *shrug* Also, did anyone else think that Russell Crowe must have somehow paid the studio to keep him in the film longer? Every time it seemed like we were done with him, he found another way to reach out to us and "teach us" once again! I guess no one ever really stays dead in comic stories, hehehe. But I STILL think the film is more than worth seeing, even despite all of that! Go watch and form your own opinion. Go ahead. I'll still be here.
7 shards of kryptonite out of 10
If only I had those kinds of abilities. Flight, super strength, heat vision… Oh, the bitches I’d get with that. Bitches love the super strength.