Man of Steel: Not My Superman.

There is no bigger Pop Culture Icon than Superman, he means so much to so many people, he’s the greatest immigrant story ever told, he’s a beacon of hope and he’s a role model for humanity. So in this the 75th year of Clark Kent, a new movie is released Man Of Steel, this should make it up to the fans for the frankly poor Superman Returns, (he has a child???? and doesn’t throw a punch?? yeah I know??)

Superman
Superman (Photo credit: levork)

The Spoiler Free Review

I enjoyed this movie, the first 90 mins were great. A bit unusual for a super hero comic book movie to be totally bereft of humour and lacking in any fun. I’m going to give Russell Crowe a pass, hoping that he thought Kryptonians were a a bit wooden and played Jor-El accordingly. I’m also not 100% sure Amy Adams was that good a choice as Lois Lane, I’d have thought Maggie Gyllenhaal would have been better (although that may make the Justice League movie awkward.) Overall, a good film, I’ll buy the DVD and I’ll watch it again.

Spoiler Warning Spoiler Warning  Spoiler Warning

I have 4 major issues with the movie

1. Jonathan Kent does not tell his son that there are “Maybe” times when it’s okay to let people die rather than reveal himself. It’s the opposite of everything Superman stands for, the myth has Kal-El being raised to be the man he is by the loving couple who took him in.  He goes on to repeatedly ignore this advice anyway.

Jonathan and Martha Kent as they appear in

Jonathan and Martha Kent as they appear in “New Earth” continuity, with a young Clark. Cover to Superman: Secret Origin #1 by Gary Frank. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

2. Jonathan Kent’s death scene also caused me problems. Superman is not Batman (or even Spiderman.) he did not need this death to define him in anyway. Clark would not have had to display any “Powers” to get the dog from the car. A non-powered Jonathan Kent got there in time, all Clark would have needed to do was get back at the speed of a running dog and not break his ankle. In the midst of a tornado he would not have been outed. A needless death, if you must kill Pa Kent, give him a heart attack to show that there are things even Superman cannot prevent.

3. A totally farcical amount of collateral damage, Superman would have moved the fighting to a less populated area. His main goal is to protect, which proved on many occasions to be an after thought. He was literally at the other side of the world when, presumably millions of people were being killed in Metropolis, scenes of which played like some disaster-porn movie. How many times do we need to see major cities destroyed? We know what it looks like and the disturbing references to Sept. 11th were jarring.

4. Superman DOES NOT KILL. I’m not even sure if I need to explain this. He is superior intelligence which is not touched upon in the movie, he would find another way to stop Zod. This scene left a bitter taste in my mouth, oh he had a wee shout to show he was bothered, then went and got the girl. Not good enough.

So yeah I enjoyed Man of Steel, but as a life long Superman fan, I feel a bit let down. I know they can’t make movies for the 100,000 odd people who still read comics, but they should still attempt to stay close to the character. When he takes on Lex Luthor in the sequel, I fully intend to stand up in the middle of the cinema when they first meet and scream “Just snap his neck Clark you murdering bastard!”

 

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