Superman, or Kal-El as he is referred to in the film, is back with yet another message of hope for our ever doomed Earth.
We have had a lot of movies in recent years that have projected our apocalyptic demise and Man of Steel is just another rehash of the heavily saturated doomsday topic. This is not to say that Man of Steel is all that bad, it’s actually not bad at all. I just wanted to address the gigantic elephant in the room straight away.
I also found it interesting that the writers would turn Kal- El, played by Henry Cavill, into a Jesus Christ-esque figure. Though the references aren’t straight in front of your face, it is brought up enough to see the obvious.
The movie starts off on the doomed planet Krypton and the planet is about to have its first live birth in centuries. Krypton has evolved out of natural birth and into a more industrious way of creating perfect beings. Kal- El, or Superman, is born and quickly shipped off in a Moses like style to earth by his natural parents, Jor-El, played by Russell Crow, and Lara, played by Ayelet Zurer, to avoid being destroyed by his ill-fated home planet.
Knowing of Jor-El’s intention to send his son off the planet, General Zod, played by Michael Shannon, tries and fails to put a stop to it, only to be banished to the Phantom Zone for his crimes.
Fast forward 33 years, which circumstantially was the age of Christ at crucifixion, we see Kal-El alter ego Clark Kent on a fishing boat. As they are trolling along on what looks like the set of reality show Deadliest Catch, they come across an exploding oil rig. Clark acts quickly and saves the men from the fire only to go down with the rig. As he is lying in the water unconscious we flash back to a few life lessons with his adopted earth momma and poppa Kent, played respectively by Diane Lane and Kevin Costner. I actually enjoyed Costner and I wished they had shown more of his character in the film.
After the flashback, Kal-El is off to the fortress of solitude, or a crashed space ship in the arctic. It is here where he meets Daily Globe reporter Lois Lane played by Amy Adams. After he saves her and heals her wounds with his laser eyes, Lois develops a story and a bit of a crush on the flying crusader. It is also here where he meets an avatar of his deceased father, Jor-El, who also presents him with his famous leotard and informs him that the S on the chest isn’t an S but a symbol of hope on his home planet.
Soon after his revelation, General Zod plots his return and offers humanity an ultimatum. Hand over Kal- El or humanity will cease to exist. Not wanting to cause any harm to his human friends and family, Kal–EL sacrifices himself to save humanity from annihilation. The rest of the film is laden with over the top fighting and special effects that put even the great George Lucas to shame. Whereas most would see this as a good thing, I see it as the downfall of the film as it swings toward being more monotonous than entertaining.
I enjoyed Man of Steel! It wasn’t what I expected, which was both good and bad at times, but it was an overall good film.
I am still unsure of the reason behind all of the Jesus references in the film, not that they were bad or anything, I just didn’t see the purpose of it.
I thought the action scenes drug on a bit, but other than minor silly things about Man of Steel it was a great Superman! Henry Cavill was just as fitting as Christopher Reeve, but played the part entirely different in style. He was less cheesy, especially as Clark Kent. I never did get how just a pair of glasses could make someone look so different.
I must say this was a definite Zach Snyder film. Being a seasoned director of such comic book adaptations as 300 and The Watchmen, it seemed only fitting when Mr. Snyder took the reins of one of the comic industries most illustrious figures. It should be safe to bet on him doing another sequel, as Man of Steel wasn’t too bad at the box office. It was worth seeing in theaters for those who love big action on a big screen!
I give it 7.5 out of 10