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Old July 21 2013, 11:28 PM   #241
JarodRussell
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Steve Mollmann wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
But Jonathan believed (wrongly) that they were safe under the overpass. That's why the misguided fool gave them that horribly wrong advice in the first place.
I don't know that I believe this is a legit criticism of Jonathan-- it's obvious that within the narrative of the film, the overpass is supposed to be safe place to go. Unless we believe that not just Jonathan, but all the inhabitants of Kansas know nothing of tornado safety. This might be factually wrong, but that's a critique of the filmwriters' research, not Jonathan Kent.
If you're on the road and a tornado hits you, where are you going to hide? If there is an overpass, and nothing else, you get to the overpass. Or would you rather keep staying on the road?
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Old July 21 2013, 11:49 PM   #242
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Actually, you're better off lying in a ditch if you can find one. Too many documented cases of people getting sucked out from under overpasses. The winds accelerate under an overpass.
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Old July 22 2013, 12:21 AM   #243
The Old Mixer
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Going to elementary school in Indiana, they drilled it into us that if you got caught on the road during a tornado, get out of your car and into the nearest ditch.
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Old July 22 2013, 01:48 AM   #244
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Captaindemotion wrote: View Post
Although I'm enjoying this discussion, I think it's amusing that a thread about the hate for Superman Returns has ended up focussing on many people's criticisms of Man of Steel!
True, but given the timing, it was kind of inevitable. MoS is much more recent and prominent in people's thoughts.

So, is anyone unclear on why people hate Superman IV: The Quest for Peace? Anyone? No? Moving on...
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Old July 22 2013, 02:05 AM   #245
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Steve Mollmann wrote: View Post
I don't know that I believe this is a legit criticism of Jonathan-- it's obvious that within the narrative of the film, the overpass is supposed to be safe place to go. Unless we believe that not just Jonathan, but all the inhabitants of Kansas know nothing of tornado safety. This might be factually wrong, but that's a critique of the filmwriters' research, not Jonathan Kent.
Which was exactly my intent. I think the filmmakers did a horribly irresponsible thing here and might get somebody killed by presenting that as a good idea. But I'm mad at them for that and I'm mad at them for creating the most contemptible Jonathan Kent ever. When I critique Jonathan, I'm not critiquing him, because he's just a construct of the filmmakers. I'm critiquing the decisions that went into portraying him that way. So in both cases, yes, it's the filmmakers I'm critiquing. I hate their portrayal of Jonathan and I hate their irresponsibility in failing to do basic research into tornado safety. Those two things just happen to converge in that particular scene.

This isn't like me. I usually try not to be the kind of fan who rants angrily about creative decisions I don't agree with, or who makes my criticisms into personal attacks against the filmmakers. In fact, I'm usually a very forgiving moviegoer while I'm actually in the theater, letting myself get immersed in the experience and not prone to dwell on the negatives until afterward. MoS is one of the few films I can remember seeing in the theater that made me angry and frustrated while I was watching it, that made me bitter toward the filmmakers for the choices they made.
I've been thinking about your points, Christopher. I think the fault here lies in the flashback scenes that were chosen. There is nothing really in the movie to suggest that at other points in his life, Jonathan did not be the type of father figure your are suggesting. In fact, dialogue in the movie specifically states that he had been, even if we don't see it.

The scenes that we are shown in the movie specifically relate to the times in Clark's life when his parents were worried that his secret would be revealed--and there is no arguing that Clark would be taken away from the Kents if it were. Jonathan does not have answers for Clark during these scenes but it is shown that he believes that Clark will find them some day. These flashbacks are presented because they specifically relate to the alien invasion and paranoia themes in the story.

Maybe in a future movie, we will see the type of Jonathan Kent scenes that you feel are missing. I could very well see flashbacks in the upcoming movie comparing Bruce and Clark's upbringing in their journeys to become heroes.
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Old July 22 2013, 03:11 AM   #246
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

theenglish wrote: View Post
I think the fault here lies in the flashback scenes that were chosen. There is nothing really in the movie to suggest that at other points in his life, Jonathan did not be the type of father figure your are suggesting. In fact, dialogue in the movie specifically states that he had been, even if we don't see it.
But that's part and parcel of the film's core problem. Everything that's important to the mythology and spirit of Superman in this film is just paid lip service to -- there's dialogue referring to it, but it isn't shown, isn't earned, and what we are shown tends to work against the ideas and ideals hinted at in the dialogue. That's deeply flawed storytelling, failing to live up to one of the most basic rules: show, don't tell. Whatever worthwhile ideas this movie had were hampered by a very problematical execution.


The scenes that we are shown in the movie specifically relate to the times in Clark's life when his parents were worried that his secret would be revealed--and there is no arguing that Clark would be taken away from the Kents if it were.
Oh, I can argue with that. They might try to take him away, but really, how could they hold him? Not to mention that, despite the popularity of the trope of the government taking people away, all it would take is some publicity and there'd be a public outrage over such unlawful detention of a minor, and legal action could be taken to stop it. It would be a PR disaster for the government to claim that this innocent-looking boy was a threat that needed to be locked away and experimented on.

Really, that's part of why I hate the fictional trope of keeping special abilities secret. Secrecy just encourages abuse and injustice. Really, if you had superhuman abilities and were on the run from the government because of it, the absolute best thing you could do would be to hire a lawyer, call a press conference, and tell the world everything. Our legal system and free press, when they're working right, are the greatest tools against injustice and persecution ever devised by humanity.
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Old July 22 2013, 03:12 AM   #247
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

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Old July 22 2013, 03:48 AM   #248
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Christopher wrote: View Post
theenglish wrote: View Post
I think the fault here lies in the flashback scenes that were chosen. There is nothing really in the movie to suggest that at other points in his life, Jonathan did not be the type of father figure your are suggesting. In fact, dialogue in the movie specifically states that he had been, even if we don't see it.
But that's part and parcel of the film's core problem. Everything that's important to the mythology and spirit of Superman in this film is just paid lip service to -- there's dialogue referring to it, but it isn't shown, isn't earned, and what we are shown tends to work against the ideas and ideals hinted at in the dialogue. That's deeply flawed storytelling, failing to live up to one of the most basic rules: show, don't tell. Whatever worthwhile ideas this movie had were hampered by a very problematical execution.


The scenes that we are shown in the movie specifically relate to the times in Clark's life when his parents were worried that his secret would be revealed--and there is no arguing that Clark would be taken away from the Kents if it were.
Oh, I can argue with that. They might try to take him away, but really, how could they hold him? Not to mention that, despite the popularity of the trope of the government taking people away, all it would take is some publicity and there'd be a public outrage over such unlawful detention of a minor, and legal action could be taken to stop it. It would be a PR disaster for the government to claim that this innocent-looking boy was a threat that needed to be locked away and experimented on.

Really, that's part of why I hate the fictional trope of keeping special abilities secret. Secrecy just encourages abuse and injustice. Really, if you had superhuman abilities and were on the run from the government because of it, the absolute best thing you could do would be to hire a lawyer, call a press conference, and tell the world everything. Our legal system and free press, when they're working right, are the greatest tools against injustice and persecution ever devised by humanity.
Jonathan's paranoia existed in the first Donner movie as well.

Clark Kent: Yeah!... I mean, every time I get the ball, I can make a touchdown. Every time! Is it showing off for a person to do what he's capable of? Is a bird showing off when it flies?Jonathan Kent: No! No, now you listen to me. When you first came to us, we thought that people would come and take you away because if they found out about the things you could do, well that worried us a lot. But then a man gets older and he thinks very differently better, starts to see things very clear. And there's one thing I do know, son. And that is, you are here for a reason. I don't know whose reason it is, or whatever the reason... maybe it's... I don't know.... but I do know one thing: it's not to score touchdowns.
And in MOS he says almost the same thing.

[Jonathan Kent shows Clark the pod in which they found him in, revealing he is not from Earth]Jonathan Kent: We found you in this. We were sure the government was gonna show up on our doorstep. No one ever came. [He hands him the key] This was in the chamber with you. I took it to a metallurgist at Kansas State. He said whatever it was made from didn't even exist on the periodic table. It's another way of saying it's not from this world, Clark, and neither are you... You're the answer, son. You're the answer to "Are we alone in the universe?".Clark Kent (13 years old): I don't want to be.Jonathan Kent: And I don't blame you, son. It'd be a huge burden for anyone to carry, but you're not just anyone, Clark, and I have to believe that you were sent here for a reason. All these changes you're going through, one day your going to think of them as a blessing and when that day comes, you're going to have to make a choice. A choice for whether to stand proud before the human race, or not.
And the Smallvile ep. Vortex.

Jonathan: The first time Clark used his abilities, he'd crawled under a big oak bed that my grandfather had made, and I crawled underneath it to try to get him out. All of a sudden the frame just came up in the air. He was a toddler lifting, I don't know, 500 pounds over his head.Nixon: What did you do?Jonathan: We decided to take him to a doctor scientist, somebody more equipped to understand than we were. But when we got in front of the office, Martha, she said that if we left him there that they would want to keep him and we'd never see him again. So I took him home. Now, that may have been a mistake, but it was a mistake I'd gladly make again.
So blaming it all on MOS seems alittle shorted sighted to me.
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Old July 22 2013, 03:52 AM   #249
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Another fictional trope is that when the U.S. government is set up as the antagonist, they tend to be uber-competent and uber-resourceful in such matters, and can keep their black operations out of the public eye. This is movie U.S. government, not real life U.S. government.
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Old July 22 2013, 03:59 AM   #250
DWF
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

The Old Mixer wrote: View Post
Another fictional trope is that when the U.S. government is set up as the antagonist, they tend to be uber-competent and uber-resourceful in such matters, and can keep their black operations out of the public eye. This is movie U.S. government, not real life U.S. government.
Well it worked for some nine years on The X-Files and a number of other shows. And when it comes to movies and TV shows it's best not to compare them to reality. Even movies like Chariots Of Fire which was based on a true story got several facts wrong for the sake of drama.
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Old July 22 2013, 04:08 AM   #251
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

Ovation wrote: View Post
Jonathan was not perfect (like most dads, including mine and including myself). We don't always practice what we preach, we often give advice without being able to live up to it, we often have conflicting impulses about encouraging our children to make a difference and keeping them safe. I found Jonathan more like a real person than such "father figures" are usually portrayed in fiction.
This.
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Old July 22 2013, 04:36 AM   #252
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

The Old Mixer wrote: View Post
Another fictional trope is that when the U.S. government is set up as the antagonist, they tend to be uber-competent and uber-resourceful in such matters, and can keep their black operations out of the public eye. This is movie U.S. government, not real life U.S. government.
Maybe for most things, but documentaries like Taxi to the Dark Side make it clear that, when it comes to imprisoning people indefinitely out of fear or paranoia, our government unfortunately does a very good job.
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Old July 22 2013, 04:50 AM   #253
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

davejames wrote: View Post
The Old Mixer wrote: View Post
Another fictional trope is that when the U.S. government is set up as the antagonist, they tend to be uber-competent and uber-resourceful in such matters, and can keep their black operations out of the public eye. This is movie U.S. government, not real life U.S. government.
Maybe for most things, but documentaries like Taxi to the Dark Side make it clear that, when it comes to imprisoning people indefinitely out of fear or paranoia, our government unfortunately does a very good job.
It also taps into the cultural psyche of America. People tend to mistrust the government. The right to bear arms is not there to defend your home or defend the country from a foreign invasion, but to specifically take up arms against the government if necessary.

The truth is that there is a lot that goes on beyond public knowledge in the government--the fictional part of comics though is that the Black Ops is always highly competent, arms with sophisticated secret weaponry, and fights aliens and supernatural invasions on a regular basis!
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Old August 3 2013, 10:44 PM   #254
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Re: Why The Hate For Superman Returns?

RandyS wrote: View Post
Yminale wrote: View Post
I don't get this. Superman snaps Zod's neck and people shrug. Superman check up on Lois Lane and he's some evil stalker. I don't get it.
Basically, people nowdays go out of their way to look for things to be offended about, instead of, you know, actually ENJOYING a movie or TV show.

I don't get it either, but that's how it is now. I hope it changes. I really do. People need to relax.
That, and I think that expanding the concept of stalking to what Superman did in this movie is going out there a lot (I also think that the concept of stalking has been overblown and turned into a law that should have never been; we're criminalizing being in love just because somebody got murdered?)

With regards to MOS, I'll say this again; people are getting the Superman movie they deserve.
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