The highly anticipated Superman, Man of Steel is Zack Snyder-directed and Christopher Nolan-produced (Director of Batman, The Dark Knight Trilogy). Honestly, I needed a few hours to reel-in my emotions before I tried to write my thoughts about this movie. I don’t think my words will do this movie justice or can even explain how I feel about the entire experience and it’s at times like these that I wished I was gifted reviewer.
“Live as one of them, Kal-El, to discover where your strength and your power are needed. Always hold in your heart the pride of your special heritage. They can be a great people, Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you… my only son.”
I always think that we are ready to embrace yet another movie about a complex DC Comics Superhero but what is about Superman that drives us in droves to the theatres? Is it Henry Cavill’s dashing good looks? Could it be the star-studded cast? Maybe it’s the fact that this particular film has been so hyped-up…how could we not see it? I for one bought my ticket as soon as it went on sale.
This movie is definitely all about Clark Kent and his inner struggle but make no mistake, this is not a dark film and yet it’s not light as the Marvel counterparts. Man of Steel gives us insight to who Kal-El is and his struggle to fit in, much like Batman, this is a complex character that was given new life on the big screen. Superheroes are truly American Mythology at its finest but Superman is the Zeus of both the DC and Marvel worlds. Dare I say there’s a God-like quality to MoS and there are parallels between God and MoS that can easily be seen throughout the film.
MoS delivers the most compelling superhero movie of all time and the actions sequences are absolutely fantastic. It’s a slow building story into the origin of Superman and the movie opens with insight about Krypton. Jor-El (Russell Crowe) is almost like the narrator of the movie, he delivers a prologue of sorts, giving us the much-needed information to understanding how Krypton comes to fall and the special effects that paint that picture is absolutely stunning. It’s during the opening sequence that we are introduced to General Zod (Michael Shannon) and what his plans for Krypton truly are. He’s the magnificent villain you love to hate.
Zach Synder continues on to explore the fragility of Clark Kent and his life experiences are weaved with the past and present giving us insight to how complex of a character he really is and the flashback scenes are powerful. There’s a moment where Clark tells his mother, “The world is too big Mom” and his mom (Diane Lane) simply replies, “Then make it smaller”. It’s such a touching scene that I found myself holding my heart. Surprisingly enough, I was moved a few times throughout this movie (don’t even get me started with the tornado scene!) and if you aren’t moved then you’re not really getting lost in the film. Superman makes a gradual presence in this movie and knowing who he really is before he dons the cape makes it easier to believe that he’s Kal-El.
Amy Adams as Lois Lane is what I like to call perfect casting. There’s light flirting throughout the film and even then, it seems to be a bit strong to say that but I’m not sure there was enough of it to warrant the major kiss towards the end; I’m not complaining just merely pointing it out. I guess I wanted more romance and who wouldn’t since it’s Henry Cavill, right? I wouldn’t say it’s a flaw in the film but my hopes are that the romance will be explored a bit more in the next film or at least I hope it will.
There’s a true sci-fi feel to MoS which gives it a unique and refreshing approach to this film. Not only is it an amazing screenplay but David Goyer and Christopher Nolan drew from two popular modern comic storylines, Mark Waid’s “Superman: Birthright” and Geoff Johns’ “Superman: Secret Origin.”
During the 2 hours and 28 minutes of this film, I was lost in a world where Superman existed, I forgot Henry Cavill was an actor but instead, I believed in Clark Kent/Kal-El and his face and body language expressed a vulnerability that moved me.
“You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you, they will stumble, they will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders.”
There’s a lot of mixed reviews about this film but go see it with an open-mind and suspend your disbelief because you will not be disappointed.
Cast: Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Russell Crowe, Laurence Fishburne, Antje Traue, Ayelet Zurer, Christopher Meloni, Michael Kelly, Harry Lennix, Richard Schiff, Dylan Sprayberry, Cooper Timberline