Superman’s one weakness proves to be his latest movie’s weakness too.
Magical green rocks.
Superman Returns was an OK movie. I enjoyed watching it and, contrary to what everyone else said, it wasn’t too long. It is two and a half hours, but takes it’s time and uses it well. We get to know who Superman is (the same guy he always was, and I agree with Bill, Clark Kent is definitely the costume) and see what happened to Lois Lane (she shacked up with Cyclops and had a kid*).
We don’t really see why he left and what state the world was left in without him. A brief text introduction imforms us that some astronomers found Krypton (exploded) and Superman left (in a hurry) to check it out and see if there were survivors (there weren’t). No time for goodbyes**, not even for his (dream) girl…
Kevin Spacey is a great Lex, and Brandon Routh could be mistaken for Christopher Reeve (who’s desire to kill unborn babies to try and walk again made me think a lot less of him). Kate Bosworth was acceptable as Lois, and whoever it was that played Kitty, seemed like she’d just stepped out of the original movies.
There is no doubt catching aeroplanes and launching space shuttles looks awesome. Walking into a minigun firing 900 rounds per second without flinching and then taking a bullet to the eyeball is trÃ©s cool. But when the only thing that can hurt Superman is Kryptonite***, it’s hard to generate much empathy for the character. Spiderman is just a kid, and although he’s pretty tough, when he jumps in front of a train to try and save everyone on board, I know that it’s really going to hurt. When Batman gets punched and stabbed and generally beaten up, I know what it feels like (thanks Callum). But I have no frame of reference as to what it feels like to fly through lava and blink off bullets. There’s nothing in common with my experience.
Smallville’s Clark generates a lot more empathy, not because we can relate to his super powers (cool as they are), but rather because we know what it’s like to love someone who doesn’t love you back, and what the death of someone close means. Keeping secrets is hard. What do you do when your best friend does something wrong?
It’s the small things that we can relate to, not picking up really, really big rocks.
I liked the movie, but it doesn’t come close to Batman Begins and the Spiderman movies in terms of comic conversion greatness. Superman is just too alien and I didn’t ever get the sense of him being one of us, but just a bit faster/stronger/smarter. As much as wanted to, I can’t relate to Bryan Singer’s Superman.
RodeoClown: not so super.
*De facto relationships are OK now. Really. The movies told me so. Despite the fact that Lois seems to have jumped into bed with a guy the same day that Superman left and now has a kid and hates her life and took up smoking, it’s cool to live and sleep with people you haven’t married. At least until someone better comes along.
If you haven’t noticed I really hate that common culture says this is now acceptable.
**Also, why is it that no-one notices that Clark and Superman have both
been gone for 5 years, and then both appear on the same day?
Fortunately for humanity’s future, at least one kid notices that Clark and Superman are quite obviously THE SAME PERSON. Unfortunately for him, a spontaneous asthma attack stops the secret being revealed. Forever apparently.
***Also also, it would seem that 90% of Krypton landed on Earth after exploding. Sucks to be allergic.