MAN OF STEEL - Grading & Discussion

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Agent Richard07, Jun 11, 2013.


Grade the movie...

  1. A+

  2. A

  3. A-

  4. B+

  5. B

  6. B-

  7. C+

  8. C

  9. C-

  10. D+

  11. D

  12. D-

  13. F

  1. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Mar 8, 2001
    The estimates for the 4-day cumulative box office on this one are now ranging from 126 to 132 million - looks like 43 to 48 million for Friday alone, according to Deadline.

    Damn, that Rotten Tomatoes review average is killing this film! :guffaw:
  2. Ancient Mariner

    Ancient Mariner Vice Admiral Admiral

    Jun 3, 2009
    ^ I saw the 11am, 2D show at the local dive theater (no stadium seating, less than a dozen screens - in Queens with plenty of high-end venues close by) and the seats were more than half-full, some with kids whose parents took them out of school. The film is going to make a killing (pun intended), and deservedly so. I hope it makes at least a half-a-billion bucks in the NA market, alone.
  3. Gojira

    Gojira Commodore Commodore

    Oct 15, 2008
    Stompin' on Tokyo
    I am not ashamed to watch mindless action. I liked the movie Battleship, John Carter and the first and third transformer movie. Plus Superman is by far my favorite Superhero. I have no worries about the film. In mine line of work I need to have some mindless action and escapism from time to time. :)
  4. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Jan 30, 2001
    But isn't this something that could be touched on in a relevant way in a sequel? I would hate for them to only give such an event lip service at the end of the film.

    Haven't seen it yet, but am going to go with the wife tomorrow.
  5. nightwind1

    nightwind1 Commodore Commodore

    Dec 28, 2010
    Des Moines, IA
    I know, it's as bad as ST:ID!
  6. Ancient Mariner

    Ancient Mariner Vice Admiral Admiral

    Jun 3, 2009
    Ya, it could definitely be part of a sequel. And I'd love it, if that were the case. Even so, this film still needed something to refer back to it, however minor, if only as setup for the next film. Instead, in the denouement, there's a joke about the cost of a $12M drone.

    Mind you, I don't think this is a critical issue. It's not something that invalidates the film as a whole or ruins what was otherwise a mostly enjoyable experience. But for me, at least, it's the biggest flaw - and considering the scale ... the flaw looms kinda large not to at least acknowledge it in this film.
  7. stj

    stj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Dec 27, 2006
    the real world
    Pretty good. Plundering some old science fiction to give Superman a real story works out.

    Some minuses of course. Hans Zimmer's slow bang, bang, bang is tiresome. The direction doesn't use the 3D very effectively. The fight scenes drag, especially the completely unnecessary and undesirable mano a mano with Zod.
  8. Captain_Amasov

    Captain_Amasov Captain Captain

    Feb 6, 2008
    Next film will see Lex Luthor and Bruce Wayne in a gripping bidding war to win contracts to rebuild Metropolis. Yes, Luthor will be involved in yet another real estate scheme. :p
  9. Ancient Mariner

    Ancient Mariner Vice Admiral Admiral

    Jun 3, 2009
    I was amused by the Lexcorp (sic) tankers that got 'sploded in the climactic battle.
  10. Dream

    Dream Admiral Admiral

    Dec 2, 2001
    Hotel Transylvania
    I look forward to seeing Lex Luthor FINALLY getting one of his real estate schemes to work and end up owning Metropolis in these films!:devil:
  11. Goji

    Goji Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    May 6, 2006
    Great movie. Handheld cameras got old after a little bit, and the fight scenes at the end went on a bit too long for my tastes, but these are very minor quibbles. I thought Lois Lane especially was used well, much better than before, and I didn't miss anything about past interpretations of Superman. Given that so many of the reviews called this movie "cold" and without much "heart", I was surprised at how well the emotional beats worked, especially everything that went on with his adoptive parents.

    Random thoughts:

    I liked Zod, but I think I liked his female lieutenant more.

    Smallville has a Sears, an IHOP and a Seven Eleven, eh? Or rather, had.

    And hey, the movie made me like Russel Crowe. That's a first. :p
  12. DarthPipes

    DarthPipes Vice Admiral Admiral

    Mar 3, 2006
    Great film! Just got back after seeing the film with a packed audience, many of whom applauded at the end. I was a little concerned with the mixed reviews, with several saying the film was joyless. I agree it could have used a little more humor but it was a fun as hell ride featuring some terrific performances. The guy playing Zod was fantastic. Really liked the use of Lois Lane in the film. Cavil was good in the role (he really does look like Tom Welling) but again, they needed to have him loosen up a little. Top-notch FX and fighting scenes.

    Can't argue with the fact it would have been nice to have seen Superman TRY to stop some of those buildings from collapsing.

    On a minor note, loved seeing the various BSG/Dollhouse alum pop up and amused that Alessandro Juliani appeared in the next scene after the character he played on Smallville, Dr. Emil Hamilton, appeared in the movie.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
  13. shivkala

    shivkala Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Apr 26, 2004
    It's been a few hours since I've seen the movie and I gave it an "A-". My thoughts are all over the place on it, I feel that if you took most of the posts from this thread, plus Mark Waid's review and threw them in a blender, you'd get my thoughts.

    First thing first, I was shocked that Superman killed Zod. It flies in the face of "Superman doesn't kill." The problem with that is, that Superman has killed before. I watched part II of Dark Knight Returns a few days ago and kept thinking that plenty of Corto-Mateseans were likely dead based on Superman's actions. Of course, it's not entirely fair to judge Superman based on Frank Miller.

    The clear comparison is to Byrne's Pocket-Earth story, in which Pocket-Earth is destroyed by Zod and his associates. In that story, Superman is brought to Pocket-Earth to save it from the three mad-Kryptonians. Superman eventually captures them and exposes them to Gold Kryptonite, which strips them of their powers (but not Superman, since he's from a different Krypton). Zod threatens that he'll find a way to restore his powers and come to Superman's Earth to destroy it. Superman responds to this threat by exposing the de-powered Kryptonian criminals to green kryptonite, which kills them.

    So, in the instant before it happened, I saw it coming. Again, Superman realized that Zod would not stop, ever. I'm on the fence over which act is less like Superman, the pre-meditated murder in the comics, or the split-second decision in the movie. Ultimately, prompt the question, "what about the next time?" What will happen the next time a seemingly un-stoppable villain threatens Earth?

    This is something that bothered me, but it doesn't ruin the movie. To be honest, part of my issue with Tim burton's Batman was that it made Batman, in my opinion, complicit in the Joker's death (which is why I was happy when Batman did not kill Joker in The Dark Knight). It's easy to say this about fictional characters though and praise when the heroes leave the villains alive.

    It's interesting, reading Mark Waid's review that he used the term "disaster porn," because that's the same term that rattled around in my head while watching the last act. Like Waid, I assumed Metropolis was totally destroyed, until Zod popped up and they brought the fight to more areas of Metropolis. At that point I thought to myself, "Oh good, they are destroying more of the city. I was afraid that they'd leave at least one building standing."

    Speaking of that, even close to 12 years later, I have to admit, seeing buildings fall like that brings 9/11 to mind (and I have to assume that's not un-intentional).

    It does set the bar for the Justice League Movie (if we truly are getting one). I assume that the other heroes will have their origins occur post-Man of Steel to avoid the whole "Where was Flash/Wonder Woman/J'onn/etc." while Metropolis was being destroyed. And if this much damage occurred, will Earth survive a Justice League?

    As for the issue of the changes, I'm for most of them. I was never a huge fan of Lois and Clark, because I want super-heroics, not Moonlighting, when I watch Superman. Having Lois track down who Kal is, before he reveals himself to the world is a great take on the old trope. It addresses the whole "How good of a reporter could she be if she can't tell that Clark is Superman?" issue. There's only so much hand-waving you can do with that (They hand-wove Lex spending tons of money on figuring it out, by having him deny that Superman would even waste time pretending to be human. If I remember correctly, during "Hush," Superman realized that Perry and Jim know his and Batman's identities, respectively, but out of respect, keep it quiet and cover for them. Then there's the whole, "Lois romanticizes Superman and down-plays Clark, so she doesn't choose to make the connection," excuse). It does set up an interesting dynamic for the sequel, as does the fact that they kissed. Hopefully, they will do away with the love-triangle aspect. Actually, I'd be fine with seeing only a little bit of Clark as reporter. It just never does much for the story, in my opinion. The comics have made good use of it, but it just slows a movie or TV show down.

    And that's where I break with Mark Waid's analysis. He says there's very little Clark in it, and I disagree. He doesn't put on the costume and he's suddenly different. He's Clark through and through. This isn't a movie without Clark Kent in it. Yes, it is a movie without "Mild-Mannered Reporter for a Great Metropolitan Newspaper" Clark, but even in costume, even facing the Kryptonians, he's Clark through and through.

    As for Jonathan, I grew up with "Salt-of-the-Earth," always there with an inspiring word, nurturing Pa Kent. Anytime Superman faced a crisis, he headed home, where Ma would give him a kind word and some pie, and Clark would head out to start at the fields and sky of Kansas as Pa would give him some "Farming as a metaphor for life" advice. This Johnathan avoided the farming metaphors and stuck on the "you will change the world" message. So much so, he was afraid of Clark revealing himself to the world to the point that having children die to avoid questions was not out of bounds. The problem with that is, ultimately, everyone in that bus should have died, so wouldn't Clark surviving raise just as many issues as him doing what he did?

    Jonathan's death scene was a new take and showed the extent to which he wanted to protect his son, by literally dying rather than allowing Clark to reveal his secret.

    I was raised on Byrne's Man of Steel and I view Superman through that lens. But informing my opinions on him as much is perhaps my second favorite Superman story (second only to All-Star Superman), A Superman for All Seasons. In that story, Clark fights a tornado threatening Smallville. It does raise questions, but most agree to chalk it up to an Act of God, like Pete Ross' mother is willing to do. Which bothered me, since Martha tries to downplay that, when it would serve to turn the attention away from her son.

    I know I seem critical of the movie and like Trekker[/i], I find myself having to defend my "A-" grade in the face of my thoughts on the movie. While there is a certain joy to trashing a bad movie/TV show/etc., the greatest sin for a movie/TV show/etc. would be for me to say, "Eh," to it and not focus on the things that made me think (I avoid saying "things that bothered me," because I don't know that "bother" is the correct word). I felt "Eh," about Iron Man 3. It really hasn't given me any reason to think much of it after I saw it. I couldn't work up enough interest to discuss that movie after I saw it, either good or bad. That's not how I feel about Man of Steel. Maybe my post comes off as a list of gripes, but really, it's thinks that moved me to comment, which again, to me, is a sign of how much the movie meant to me.
  14. DarthPipes

    DarthPipes Vice Admiral Admiral

    Mar 3, 2006
    Superman killing Zod was shocking, I agree. I think it worked because of the way it played out, where it really was a last resort.
  15. judgeroy

    judgeroy Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    May 30, 2009
    In the mountains
    Watched it this afternoon. Was pumped afterwards. It was so nice to go to a supes movie and not get the same old cheesy boyscout supes and over acted villian (sp). The "real life" track they took was perfect and this is now my number one supes movie. The storyline was meaty and the action and pace was very good. I could follow all the action very well, even though I am blind in one eye.
    Odd thing though is that I did fell a little sympathy for Zod. The Krypton society is a good example of a static society. Babies are hard wired for their service to society. Zod was hardwired for defense and saving his people and his and his people's ending kind of hit a note on me for some reason. The Kent's views on how the world would look upon their son was spot on and would be the way I would have handled it too and I thought that Pa's sacrifice was chilling and stoic.
    In reading the critics reviews, it seems to me that they are giving negatives largely because they didn't get the story they wanted. They wanted all the gooey cheesy stuff, didn't get it and cried about it. IMHO. Sure there are some ticks in this movie that bothered me, but overall I gave the movie an A plus. It breathes a needed breath of fresh air into the mythos and the fact that a 1:30 showing was stuffed full kinda sealed that deal for me. OK, done rambling!
  16. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Mar 8, 2001
    Looking like a 134 million dollar four day cume, now, with an estimated 52 million Friday.

    Just imagine how well it would be doing if it had held on to that 60% Fresh rating at Rotten Tomatoes. :guffaw: :guffaw:
  17. Titus Andronicus

    Titus Andronicus Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    May 22, 2004
    Augusta, GA
    I haven't had a chance to read through the entire thread, but I DID see the movie tonight.

    I've been a Superman fan since I was 5 years old. I enjoyed the Reeve movies (yes, even IV, but that was when I was a kid lol) and didn't find Returns as bad as people thought it was.

    But THIS the Superman film I've been waiting for. Gave it an A. Can't wait to see what they do next with the franchise.
  18. Lapis Exilis

    Lapis Exilis Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Dec 20, 2004
    Lois was wildly better than in ANY movie interpretation before. Amy Adams was a smart, brave, and professional Lois, with an innate moral compass that is apparent through her actions. She felt like a real person with a gravitas that made her equal to Kal. The romance angle was handled with admirable subtlety, especially for a movie, which doesn't have the time the comics have to do a slow build of a relationship.
  19. DaveyNY

    DaveyNY Commodore Commodore

    I guess I'm to "Old School" for this movie.

    I wasn't bored, but it just didn't click for me.

    The FX were spectacular and the acting quite good, but the music left a lot to be desired.

    It's a very solemn and macabre story, which means it'll probably be a huge hit with folks under twenty-five.

    The real World is depressing enough, I really don't want to go to the movies and be even more depressed when I leave.

    I must have missed the dialogue in the movie where Superman wanes on the fact he's going to be forced to kill Zod...

    Cause his reaction after breaking Zods' neck came completely out of left field as far as I was concerned.

    I got that Jor-El was very reticent to kill Zod (that was obvious from the get-go), but I never got that vibe from the son till the very moment it happened.

    A few other observations...,
    No Daily Planet Icon on building roof.

    I didn't mind Jenny Olsen, but they could have at least made her something more than a screaming damsel-in-distress.

    Laurence Fishburn as Perry White, interesting choice, not much done with the character though.

    Pa Kent dies a hero's death... seemed completely out of character for me. Pa WAS savable, they should have stuck with a natural 'cause-of-death'. (but perhaps Mr. Costner needed something more, to do the part).

    Way to many buildings destroyed in Metropolis, haven't seen that level of destruction since "The Death of Superman" comic series.
    Which leads to the over-whelming number of dead that must be left lying around.
    How many folks who have lost loved-ones, are really going to be appreciative of Superman defeating the bad guys...
    In other words, waaaay over done in my opinion.

    Making Superman REAL for todays audiences...
    In my opinion, takes all the FUN out of it.
    Superman was created during a time when it was believed that the world was on the edge of mass destruction...
    In order to bring a hero to the comic book readers of the time, who could up-lift their spirits. (as well as sell comics)

    Todays Superman is just another grim character that demonstrates just how desolate and depressing the real world can be.
    I'll take "Superman Returns" over this, anytime.

    I doubt MoS is going to beat Iron Man out in the money dept. this summer.

    Oh, I gave the movie a C.
    And there were about 14 people at the 11:30am, 2-D showing I went to.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
  20. Lapis Exilis

    Lapis Exilis Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Dec 20, 2004
    Just read Mark Waid's review. Hmmm - I've been having a hard time with everyone's upset over the "collateral damage" issue and I think I just figured out why. I mean I get it from a perspective of an iconic character having certain basic characteristics and one of Superman's is that he always protects, even in the midst of a big fight. But, given from what a different point this particular version of Superman begins, I'm just not sure it's a valid in-story criticism.

    I'm a little undecided on this, but here goes: the crux of this story is that Clark is deeply alienated from humanity. Mostly people are shown being shitty to him. He's not really bitter, but he's in a place of extreme caution. He helps where he can - but always with one eye toward staying as incognito as possible. He's been raised to consider that letting people die to protect his secret may be a valid choice. He's not sure that humans are his people.

    So into this comes a challenge far greater than any he's ever imagined. He's an inexperienced fighter - and a good deal is made of this, both in the fight scenes and in the midst of Zod's monologing at the end. He's basically barely holding his own to keep the Kryptonians from killing him. I think this combination of factors makes it hard to imagine how he'd even be able to physically protect others, and he seems so unsure of his position with humanity that he just hasn't developed the instincts yet to think about how to try to save a bunch of humans in the middle of these fights. I think the whole point of the climactic end of his fight with Zod may have been intended to show that these things are coming to form the core of him. He is finally identifying with humans and with his role as their protector.

    On the other hand, the film does proceed as if everyone, including Clark, are able to move blithely on after the massive destruction of Metropolis, without a moments mourning, or even acknowledgement of what had to be massive loss of life. I can sort of write it off as movie logic (name a superhero movie where there is significant screen time spent on regret after the massive destruction of the final fight), though the scale of it in this movie makes that a little harder than usual.

    I guess it comes down to whether it's important to you that Superman be a character with such a strong inborn personality trait that protecting people always comes first. I can appreciate the idealism in that, but it feels very... naïve to me. And it kinda makes him a less interesting character because that character has a moral compass stuck on Always Unattainably Good and Self-Sacrificing. He's got nothing to strive for, no part of himself to triumph over. That guy can't ever surprise you and a story about him would have a hard time surprising you too.