Man of Steel

 RATED-(PG-13)-143-MIN-2013

 

I have to admit, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed Man of Steel. It really is a rather entertaining and different tone of film for a Superman movie, and I give credit for Snyder's rather visionary style of filmmaking at times, as he really tried to put a new, more serious face to this beloved superhero. The cast is a huge plus here: starting with the commanding and reliable:(Russell Crowe) as Jor-El, and the beautiful and talented actress (Ayelet Zurer) as Lara, Superman's real parents. At first (Henry Cavill) as Kal-El, seems a bit like a sullen lunk, but as the movie progresses, he grows on you, and you realize that he is rather a good actor; much better than a muscle bound cardboard cutout, and by the end had me looking forward to seeing him again as Superman. I grew up with Christopher Reeve’s funny and aw-shucks charming version, and I still love the first two Superman’s greatly, but I like Cavill as the Man of Steel. He was a good choice.  

Another good choice was having the talented actor: (Michael Shannon) as General Zod, although there are a lot of angry faces, and yelling about not betraying Krypton before the effects take over again. What the hell, he is a good bad guy, who maybe needed a few more scenes to take advantage of Shannon’s great acting skills, but he plays it well. I am a fan of (Amy Adams) Lois Lane, now Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter for The Dailey Planet, who is solid as always, and I would imagine if future films are made, her story will grow as she is his main squeeze. Huge kudos to: (Kevin Costner and Diane Lane) as the loving earth parents Jonathan and Martha Kent,.They are excellent. Their scenes are touching and well written, as they counsel their adopted son from another world, on what it means to have the power he does, how he should use caution, be able to step back, not interfere sometimes, and to reinforce that there is a greater reason to why he was sent to Earth. Many of these moments are dispersed throughout the film, and they are welcome and wonderful scenes that help ground and add more emotional weight to the tone of this reboot. I liked the scene where Clark saves a school bus full of kids that goes off a bridge into the water; Clark being one those kids.  

The story has been tweaked here and there, but ultimately it is the same: sent here from a doomed planet by his parents, who have a child naturally, which has been forbidden on Krypton, where people are harvested and genetically grown for a certain need in their society, whether it be a soldier or scientist. Free will is what they want for their son, and Jor-El knows that the planet's core will destroy it soon. When Zod and his band of soldiers try to take over the counsel, because he wants to bring Krypton back to what he thinks it should be, Jor-El and Zod have it out when he refuses to join his violent upheaval, even though he agrees with some of what Zod wants. Jor-El has taken the codex for manufacturing people and placed it with his son, who he will send out to the heavens to find a new home for him; far away from the doomed planet. Zod ends up killing Jor-El after he launches the escape ship, and now Zod must get it back. The coup is crushed and Zod and his band of outlaws, are sent to the Forbidden Zone for their crimes. Zod vows to find Kal-El and the codex.Kal-El makes it to earth and lands in Smallville, Kansas where the Kents take to raising this child from the stars. When Krypton explodes, it frees Zod and his men who now are headed to Earth to find the Codex and Ka-El.

Superman in this film, kind of wanders around doing odd jobs and saving people from danger when he can, then he moves on. He is not sure what he should do with himself in this world he was sent to. The first three quarters of the film, the filmmakers really try to create something different with this reboot, and I think there is much to enjoy. Like Nolan's Batman series, there is weight and depth that you have to give credit for. The look of it is rather different too, with some interesting costumes and technology on Krypton; kind of Dark City meets Alien. Another awesome score from Hans Zimmer adds alot to this film, along with the obvious Christopher Nolan touch. The last quarter is all action, explosions, and destruction, but they  are energetic and top notch. I guess it has to come to this, with the mad Zod and his followers smashing anything they can. I have read many reviews where they said this was not a very good film, and maybe you should pass. It's baloney. See Man of Steel for what it strives to be: something above the normal action dreck that Hollywood churns out, and give credit to Snyder and his film for making a superhero movie that at least takes a gamble and strives for some truly poetic moments in a film based on a comic book. That's not bad.You Should See This Movie.

Watch the trailer: http://youtu.be/wArmHSPIvlQ