2013, Movies

Man of Steel (2013, Zack Snyder)

I feel like I remember reading that this movie had too much origin story and they weren’t kidding. This film tries to both tell the origin story of Superman and of General Zod, and then pit them against each other. And there is just an absolute ton of stuff about Krypton. Honestly, if feels like there’s enough plot for a TV show. (I wouldn’t be surprised that this stuff was revealed over many comics.) It’s a little bit like the latter Avengers movies this way, only with way fewer characters.

It’s funny that I recently watched a pretty good film about alien arrivals starring Amy Adams and now I watched a film about alien arrivals starring Amy Adams which has no basis in science. There are feeble attempts, and these attempts strike me as ridiculous. Shouldn’t we treat Superman as he was originally imagined and not try to pair the laughable ideas about the universe with modern scientific concepts like terraforming?

I don’t like Superman as a character anyway, though I don’t find Cavill anywhere near as off-putting as some have claimed. (Maybe I’m thinking of the previous Superman…I can’t keep track.) I don’t know about you, but I was never in doubt about the outcome. And nobody could even produce any kryptonite. The best we get is that the “atmosphere” where they’re terraforming is going to be hard for him to breathe in. Sigh.

This is a ridiculous, over-the-top film that manages to destroy New York City like any number of other films of its ilk. (Sorry, Metropolis.) I for one am kind of tired of watching New York get destroyed. And tired in general of existential threats to planet Earth. At one point, there’s this machine attacking Superman man in the sky and I was like “What the fuck is happening?” I don’t think they bothered to convey what it was or how it was being commanded to do what it did. Just more spectacle.

This is not the worst DC movie I’ve seen by any means. But it is loud and it is just way too big for its own good. And it lacks the witty banter of the Marvel movies, which is at least some relief from the endless noise and bluster.


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