Review: MAN OF STEEL

 
Clark/Kal-El: Henry Cavill
Lois Lane: Amy Adams
General Zod: Michael Shannon
Jor-El: Russel Crowe
Jonathan Kent: Kevin Costner
Martha Kent: Diane Lane
Perry White: Laurence Fishbourne
Col. Nathan Hardy: Christopher Meloni
Dr. Hamilton: Richard Schiff
General Swanwick: Harry Lennix

Directed by: Zack Snyder
Written by: David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan
Running Time: 143 minutes
Rated: PG-13 (for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and for some language)

 
This film had such high expectations going in. A very talented director with a reputation for killer action scenes, writers who are known for writing some pretty dark comic book movies and an enormous, star studded cast that any studio would kill to have in one feature. The result is the most anticipated movie of 2013, and Man Of Steel delivers! It is by far they best action movie of the year and a front runner for the best movie of the summer. I had very high hopes going into the movie and I wasn’t disappointed as the film far exceeded my expectations and delivered what was a great movie that was very loyal to the original material and left plenty of story for the sequel to carry on with.

If you thought the action scenes director Zack Snyder created in Sucker Punch were outstanding, they were nothing compared to the colossal fights that took place in man of Steel. The effects were jaw dropping but at the same time they never overshadowed the cast who were always front and center. Superman has never looked more realistic and modern with this reboot and this was the comic book finally brought to life without holding anything back. This is the kind of Superman movie fans all over the world have been waiting for.

 

(Yes, this movie is dark… what on earth did you expect from a film written by the two men
who brought us the Blade films, The Dark Knight Trilogy, Memento and Inception??)

A lot of critics are attacking this film for being too dark and way too serious. Why not? We’ve had the campy movies already, it’s high time we had a serious movie about the real world and how they would respond to Superman zipping around. When you hire writers like David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan to pen your script, I got news for you guys… this is going be one dark film. Add the director of 300 and the Watchmen into the mix and this movie is going to be epically dark. This isn’t a bad thing and it just made this retelling of Superman to be much more realistic. I loved the retelling of Jonathan Kent’s death and how they tied it into the storyline, I loved Superman’s response to being cornered into doing the last thing he ever wanted to do. This was the best Superman script to ever come forward and one reason for it is because of how dark it was. Life is dark and imperfect, even for the Man Of Steel.

By far one of the best things this film has going for it is not the effects (which were mind blowing) but the actors who all delivered. I’ve been a fan of Michael Shannon ever since I saw him in ‘Take Shelter’ and I thought he made a kick ass General Zod. I don’t think anyone could have done that role better. Russell Crowe was back in his action element again with a surprising awesome showing as Jor-El, Superman’s father. An expanded role that helped the Man Of Steel a great deal, kind of like how Ben Kanobi helped Luke in Star Wars.

 

(Michael Shannon was the perfect man to play General Zod… an inspiring choice)

 
Then there is the role of Superman himself, which I was seriously impressed with. Henry Cavill delivered a great showing as the Man of Steel. I could tell the audience had no trouble accepting him as the new Superman and I know a lot of people can’t wait to see him with his cape on the big screen again very soon. Amy Adams was also just as good as Lois Lane, a character kept in the game a lot more than I thought she would be. The role of Superman’s earth parents were portrayed brilliantly by Diane Lane and Kevin Costner… who we mostly see in a series of flashbacks to Clark’s childhood. Costner comes across as one of the more sympathetic Jonathan Kent’s ever seen on screen. He took command of the screen every time he walked into it.

One thing I absolutely loved about the storyline in Man Of Steel was the fact that Superman didn’t save the world by himself. The only way he was able to defeat Zod was with the help of the human race. I liked that part of the storyline; one where the good guys only won when they work together. I like that part of it as it was interesting to watch the humans adjust to the fact that Superman wasn’t their enemy but their ally, a process that required a lot of trial and error. Yes, humanity needed Superman to help save the day but as Jor-El told him earlier in the movie, only when everyone rose together were they able to take great strides. It was a great theme that was played out nicely throughout the film.

Despite how much I love this movie, I feel the need to issue a strong warning: this is not a movie for young children. After watching this film with a bud, I’ve decided not to take my son Ethan to see this film. There is a lot of intense violence and some very sad death scenes that I think kids will find very difficult to handle. This is every fanboy’s dream come true, but it’s not something for the family. Over 50% of the film is action and destruction, at least. Don’t get me wrong, I liked the action but this is not something I’d recommend taking anyone under 13 to see.

 

(Die hard fans will not go home disappointed, Man Of Steel is epic!)

 
Overall, this movie finally delivers a movie that is worthy of what is honestly the best comic book hero ever drawn. Man Of Steel delivers the actions scenes we read on the page but never thought we’d ever see on the big screen, at least not in a live action movie. Zack Snyder has delivered another amazing superhero movie, I was a huge fan of the Watchmen, and I personally hope DC is smart enough to let this man direct the next Superman film and the upcoming Justice League movie. Snyder has proven time after time that he cannot be challenged when it comes to delivering heart pounding action and this film is no exception. But thanks to a killer script written by some pretty talented scribes, this film also has a lot of heart as well as a lot of compassion, even for its enemies. It was that heart that made the audience I was with swoon, especially at the end of the film when everything fell into place… especially for the sequel.

This is the can’t miss hit of the summer, I highly recommend it!

 
Rating: 10 (Out of 10)

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