(Humor me and pretend Superman is a real person for a sec.)
So while I’m waiting for my phone to charge I figured I’d knock this out. I’ve been posting super infrequently because my life is mega quantum right now. Hopefully that’ll change once I move.
Right of the bat, I really enjoyed this movie. I wasn’t just dripping with fanboy joy. I was actually proud to be a Superman fan for the first day since 93, when he became my favorite hero. Now I see all of these fuckers who called him basic running around in their t-shirts and capes. Fair-weather fans if you ask me. But now isn’t the time for me to segue into my fury. I’ll me the first to admit that I am the Hitler of fans, especially when it comes to Superman (and to a lesser extent, Aquaman). I feel like many people fawning over the Man of Steel now are the same people who claimed that he was too simple, too powerful, too clean cut, too idealistic, too this, that, and the other.
Bullshit on them. I always say: You’re missing the point. He is the only survivor. A refugee on a world that he could so easily break. Filled with millions of people that need him on a planet that he really is too good to save, but it is all that he has. There is a darkness to that, and there is a point in not stating that out loud for the reader. He, like many of us, is a lost soul coping with that end all, be all question: Who am I. Why am I here. What do I do. It bookends every great story. The potential to have fun with that idea has always been around for Superman. And for the hardcore readers, it’s well worn territory that the masses you are arguing with do not know.
So where was I? Oh yeah the movie. I loved it. I thought there were lots of hits and a few misses, but on a scale from The Original Fantastic Four to The Dark Knight this movie is a solid Batman Begins. Begins wasn’t just one movie. It was a thesis. It was the question. I think that this Superman movie is the beginning of a very important exploration of all corners of The Man of Tomorrow. What happens when we see his pain. His Messiah Complex? The next one is the deciding factor for me, because this movie sacrificed being perfect for the sake of a bombass sequel… which if you ask me is perfectly set up for Lex Luthor.
Five Hits (originally these were ten so I’m leaving stuff out b/c I’m tired):
Forgive me for this ramble.
1. It’s a beautiful movie to look at and listen to. The B-Roll of the minutiae of middle-American life is something we never really got in the Donnerverse or in the Smallverse. I mean, sure: we SAW it. But it was trite and almost kind of artificial. Like a bunch of guys watch the Wizard of Oz and The Dukes of Hazzard and figured they knew everything they need to know about the Midwest. This movie shows its fully as a part of the story. You get the sense that the Kent farm is a picture of who he really is. It’s more than just Sunsets and vast plains. It’s rusty gutters and dirt. It really inspired me to wear jeans to work this week.
Also I’d like to say thanks for going a different route with Superman’s characterization. It isn’t anything like the Mythical Reeves Superman. This is a Superman with hair on his chest. This is a Superman who truly lives as a human being in the world.
2. The destruction. Of Krypton. Of Metropolis. THANK YOU ZACK SNYDER. I was FINALLY sad to see Krypton go (and for that matter his parents). When a planet explodes, its SUPPOSED to FRIGGING SUCK. So thanks for showing that. Also the fight scene. I liked it and also saw it as a response to the FOOLS that hated Superman Returns. The guy is fucking powerful enough to level a city. THIS is why he’s careful. I think that this movie did the best job of showing the power of an inexperienced Last Son of Krypton (running out of nicknames here).
3. The casting. Nuff said. Would’ve like Jimmy Olsen, but if that spot is open, I think I’m the perfect person to play him. Sorry Aaron Paul. Kevin Costner actually deserves his own number for being the most complex character in the movie. Also, Kudos to making women useful in the plot.
4. SPOILER: Alot of people didn’t like this. I did. It was a good one time only change (or addition). Superman never kills, but we never know why. Also, why the fuck doesn’t he kill? I get that we love to preserve our heroes’ codes, but as a storyteller, its way more fun to see our heroes in pain. So let have them break their rules. There’s more to learn there. Here we see that Superman has one thing above his moral code: the greater good. The greater preservation of life.
5. Not being a labored origin. As the only viewer of Smallville, I got ten years of this shit, so thanks for the non-linear experience. It was like a reference guide, or like flipping back and forth with pages of a comic. Or am I the only one who turns back?
1. Almost a near miss for me, but we get Superman in front of Jesus. Shame on you. We get Superman “saving them all” as he descends down to Earth in the shape of a cross. Shame on me. We find out that Superman is 33… Fuck you. WE GET IT. KNOCK IT OFF. Don’t dump on all the sprinkles. Just gimme a little bit you know. I love to hate on the Jesus allegory element of Supes, and HE wouldn’t be the same without them but too much is too much. Almost felt like an agenda. If this Superman is to reflect the world we live in, have him be a more holistic savior.
Sidenote: this whole movie has some pretty good minority/immigrant/LGBT subtext too. If American has hated you in any point in histonry, give this film a looksie.
2. Destruction. Have him save a single person. Literally just one so I know he’s aware that his actual job is saving lives.
3. Okay. We get it. Lois and Superman are soulmates. I know where this is going. Save it for the sequel. Don’t rush the kiss. There was no time to develop the obligatory romantic subplot, so save it for the sequel.
4. Endless dick and vagina shit. All of the spaceships were ovaries or some kind of uterus. Maybe I have the problem. I see that stuff everywhere.
5. A teensy bit of humor. We get that this is a different route. But this is why I say the film is missing Jimmy Olsen. Even the Joker, Alfred, Freeman, and Bane (oops) were a little funny. There needed to be a few laughs. Either Jimmy Olsen or the mild-mannered Kent that we all know and love. Maybe well get that in the sequel but for a movie as long and serious as it was, I would have liked a few lighter feels.
All in all, the movie left room for improvement. It is currently the only movie to exactly meet my expectations.