Man of Steel Review

Henry Cavill finally takes flight and it is a spectacular sight. After years of being the least lucky actor in Hollywood, Cavill finally not only lands a coveted role, but gets a script that’s worthy of him.

Let’s face facts this isn’t the Superman from the 80s. I adored that Superman, but like the 80’s its light hearted and flashy, it doesn’t take itself seriously for the most part and let’s be honest any anything resembling it would be hated (anyone remember Superman Returns and loved it? No?) It held a certain magic for its time, and it can’t be duplicated. What’s so spectacular about Man of Steel is that it doesn’t even try to copy its predecessor, and it makes no apologies for it.

 Like Nolan’s Batman trilogy, Man of Steel, takes on a gritty real world stance. People aren’t horrible, they’re corruptible by their principals and circumstances. Krypton’s destruction is the result of over-reaching and lack of foresight. Instead of looking to the stars for additional natural resource the Kryptonians became too self important and harvested energy from their planet’s core, destroying everything in the process. Jor-El (Russell Crowe) seeing the imminent destruction of his planet does what he can to see his new infant Kal-El will survive and thrive on another world far away. General Zod and his troops attempt a coup only to be sent away to the phantom zone, accomplishing nothing when the planet is destroyed anyways.
Kal-El comes to Earth and thrives, but it isn’t easy. His biggest enemy on Earth isn’t Kryptonite, but instead isolation and loneliness. Cavill depicts this so well that it’s heart wrenching to watch. As Clark, with every life he saves, it only serves to drive a further wedge between himself, and the people around him. And with the arrival of General Zod, hell bent on capturing Clark at any cost, Clark has to give pieces of himself away to save the world.

Now I’m not usually one to listen to the critics, and big SPOILER alert, but I feel I have to address this. Superman kills Zod, and many critics have made a stink over this fact. Superman is not a killer, they say, this goes against his every moral fiber. But let’s face facts, Superman has killed. That when given no other choice he will “pull the trigger.” And he has killed Zod in the past on film! In this adaptation it hurt my heart to see the anguish of his actions, but in Donner’s version it was lighthearted. A defeated Zod was pushed to his death with glee and smirks. There are no smirks here.

Director Zach Snyder perfected infuses his normal highly stylized specials effects with such realism that certain scenes are hard to watch. Is there an abundance of green screen used? Yes. But I think where it went overboard in Suckerpunch it hits the right levels here, where one would expect it to for a comic book movie.

Cavill obviously shines as Superman, when he puts on the suit there is no doubt in my mind that he is Superman. There is a quiet confidence about him that translates perfectly on screen and for this character, and yet there’s a shy, self-conscious undertone, that exudes a humbleness that is utter perfection.

Amy Adams plays a feisty and very intelligent Lois Lane. Margot Kidder wasn’t half the Lois, Adams is. The changes to Lois and Clark’s history make it easier for her savvy reporting skills to shine. She’s a little bit of a ball buster, but she definitely stands on her own two feet in a world where Kidder’s Lois is reduced to a damsel in distress.

Michael Shannon as General Zod is so intense and complex. He really is quite amazing, and that takes nothing away from Terrance Stamp who played Zod in the Donner flicks. These are two entirely different beasts. In fact the entire supporting cast in Man of Steel is pretty spectacular. Both of Clarks fathers, his earth dad, and space dad (Kevin Costner and Russell Crowe) each bring a special quality to the role.
Man of Steel plays on the heart strings. It brings a refreshing look to Superman’s origins. There are plenty of nods to other characters (Supergirl, Lex Luthor, Bruce Wayne, Aquaman) that could easily launch the DC universe and bring about The Justice League much as Marvel did for the Avengers. But even if that doesn’t come into fruitation, it is a spectacular movie on its own. The anguish feels so real I was nearly brought to tears multiple times, and the action is so intense I’m not sure I was able to blink for the final battle (which sucks if you wear contacts!). This one is going to obliterate records, and with good reason. Man of Steel has something for everyone, and really does a great way of showing not just Super-ness, but also Hope.


Copyright © 2013 Something to Muse About and Blogger Templates - Anime OST.