Friday, June 14, 2013

"Man of Steel" has now been witnessed

Well, yup.  It's 3:10ish in the AM and I am home.  Just saw Man of Steel with Kevin and Juan.

spoilers below

To say I have mixed feelings is an understatement.  Some parts were very good.  Some were not.  Some felt very true to what I'd want in a Superman movie and seemed to get Superman, and others... just felt like generically lifted concepts from other movies of the last 15 years.  At least there was no "prophecy" and Superman was never described as "The One" or anything like that.

In the end, my thoughts that "Zack Snyder isn't a very good director" panned out.  Meanwhile, David Goyer shoved as many Superman comics bits into the movie as he could, and its a reminder of where Superman has really been the last 20 years or so, both good and bad.

Cavill is a pretty good Superman, and - as if I'd had any doubt - Amy Adams acquits herself very nicely as a Lois Lane who is not going to be the girlfriend in peril or reporter with more spunk than brains.

The movie wants to be the epic start to something, and in that, it almost doesn't feel complete.  It has that same sort of "we know you're coming back, so we're not going to really tell a whole story" sort of problem that was one of a multitude of problems with JMS's Superman: Earth One.

For the folks who found Superman Returns dull...  this is a Superman for the kids who've been raised on Transformers movies and made Fast and the Furious spin out to a six-pack of summer films.  As advertised, the last hour is non-stop action/ CGI happening.  And some of it isn't even bad.  Snyder more or less constructs at least kind of interesting scenes of aliens beating the tar out of each other.  He just can't quite see his way to consider the character bits as terribly important once we're in motion.

And, frankly, he wrestles with the character bits mightily leading up to all that.  For lack of what better to do, he sort of shakes the camera when two people are having a conversation.  Because, immediacy or reality TV or something.  Maybe he forgot to buy a tripod.

It's not awful.  From a Superman comic reader's perspective, it feels like a really mid-tier Superman origin retelling that probably would never be considered cannon as it lifted from prior material without giving much back.  I'd probably enjoy reading it, to some extent, as it'd be a new take on some old themes.

Much like the two recent Star Trek movies, you kind of get the feeling that everyone was just delaying getting to the relevant part.

super spoiler of spoilers

I just didn't agree with the movie's decisions to kill off Zod.  Even if Superman straight up murders a depowered Zod at the end of Superman II (and he does, make no mistake), there's a fundamental problem in your Superman story when there is no choice but killing the bad guy.  Yeah, it's the impossible situation, but Superman comics have written themselves out of the Kobayashi Maru more times than Kirk's woken up shirtless.

Okay.  I'm off to bed.  It's 3:35 AM.

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