ZACK SNYDER’S SUPERMAN THROWS PUNCHES!
I had my tickets to see Man of Steel two weeks before the film’s release. I’ve written many articles about the film and broken down just about every trailer. The more I saw, the more excited I became. Could THIS be the Superman movie I’ve always wanted to see? To say I was pumped would be a gigantic understatement.
When Superman Returns was released, I was incredibly disappointed in the lack of action as well as Lex Luther’s ‘land’ scheme. That movie focused on Clark Kent and his integration into society but failed to deliver a Superman worthy of the big screen. Man of Steel is very much the opposite. This reboot focuses almost entirely on Kal-El and his integration into society. Would humanity accept a savior from another world? What would happen if an alien revealed his/herself today? It’s a fascinating theme that lays the foundation for a Superman movie unlike anything we’ve ever seen.
I’m going to start at the end and work my way backwards. The final hour of this movie is as big (if not bigger) than the finale of last year’s smash The Avengers. The destruction caused by Superman and General Zod’s Metropolis death match is gargantuan. Buildings crumble, roads are shattered and Zack Snyder delivers some of the most exciting action I’ve ever seen on the big screen. Finally, the Man of Steel is unleashed with a worthy opponent backed by some spectacular visual effects and direction.
When I woke up this morning and gathered my thoughts for this review, all I could think about was the final act. I can’t wait to see it again but I don’t think I’ll see it in theaters twice. Why? Because it took over 2 hours to get to the explosive finale.
THE DARK KNIGHT THIS IS NOT
I think comparing Man of Steel to Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy isn’t entirely fair. True, they share a similar real world approach but there can only be one Dark Knight. The one glaring difference between the two is the time it takes to establish the hero’s origin. With Batman Begins, Nolan created an effective and exciting back story while remaining economical with screen time.
We don’t even see Earth for nearly 30 minutes in Man of Steel. From there we follow a broken timeline that mixes in important events from Clark’s youth as we follow his journey as an adult. All the usual Superman moments are included but several scenes felt better suited as deleted scenes on the Blu Ray.
It’s interesting for such a fast paced movie to feel slow. Time crawls when you can’t wait to see super speed.
Still, it’s hard to fault a movie for providing such detail as they built up the universe’s mythology. I think my excitement to see Superman in action worked against me as I waited. Regardless, this movie definitely feels long in addition to actually being long.
I went in to Man of Steel thinking there was no way the film would earn less than 8/10. When the credits rolled I was blown away by the action but surprisingly found myself considering a 6. Upon further review, I decided that Man of Steel is a worth a trip to the theater. It’s worth it because THIS is the best Superman movie I’ve ever seen. Years ago, I was angry because there wasn’t enough action in Superman Returns. Many fans were. People demanded a Superman that threw punches and the talented filmmakers behind this epic delivered exactly what we asked for.
This is a Superman movie filled with iconic moments and massive action set pieces. It features a truly stellar cast with scene stealing performances by Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, Michael Shannon and Amy Adams. There are slower moments and an incredibly long build up to the enormous finale but in the end, it was entertaining. A 7/10.
It may not redefine the superhero genre as many hoped but not all movies can be as big as The Avengers or as complex as The Dark Knight.
THIS IS THE SUPERMAN MOVIE I ASKED FOR
An action packed epic where Superman battles a worthy foe and holds nothing back. Maybe I will catch it again on the big screen after all.