Review: Superman Returns

Brooke and I saw “Superman Returns” tonight and I’d place it up there with “Batman Begins” as a great way to rejuvinate a movie series.

The film gets started pretty quickly, apparently taking place after “Superman II,” and incorporating plot devices that end up supplanting the generally worse latter two movies (which I doubt many people will mind).? Essentially, Superman has been gone for 5 years and things have changed such that Superman needs to join the world again and get back to truth, justice and the American way…and as usual, Lex Luthor (in an excellent performance by Kevin Spacey) is around to screw it up with yet another dastardly scheme that threatens the well-being of Earth.

So, the movie overall was really good. The acting was awesome, the special effects were top-notch (as to be expected from a Bryan Singer movie), and the plot in general was strong. I really liked all the little plot points that Singer tossed in that pay homage to the original. The opening credits and ending sequences were very much the same as the original movie and even some lines were ripped from the original script. With that in mind, if you have access to the original film, I’d recommend you see it before watching this movie. You may want to watch the second also, but at least watch the first.

I only had two “complaints” about the movie, but they are pretty minor. First of all, the ending was kinda drawn out. Without giving anything away, the last 15-20 minutes were somewhat unnecessary and could have been resolved differently, in my opinion…but I can live with it… Secondly, the action scenes were good, but they weren’t up with “Spider-Man 2” and the like. Honestly, there isn’t much that could be done. While Spider-Man bounces around and swings all over the place, Superman just flies in straight lines and punches people. So, while watching a movie like “Spider-man” is very dynamic and engaging, the action scenes in “Superman Returns” are somewhat lacking. On the other hand, it is very badass to see him rescue a plane as it plummets toward Earth and land it in a baseball stadium…and to see him take a bullet in the eye and not flinch… I’m just saying that the action was good, but wasn’t particularly impressive as compared with “Spider-Man” (but I can’t see any way that could have been resolved without changing decades of history and lore).

That said, I think the movie was really good and well worth watching…so worth watching that I intend on seeing it again in IMAX 3D once Josh gets back from Virginia…and I’ll tell you about that after I see it…w00t!

3 Replies to “Review: Superman Returns”

  1. I would agree that Superman Returns is a good flick. I wouldn’t rate it as high as Batman Begins though. The acting for the most part was excellent, although I feel that some of the lines that Lois Lane had were somewhat forced. There could have been more action, but like you said, Superman just kind of walks up and beats guys up unlike Spider-man who is not invincible and therefore is forced to use his agility to beat the bad guys. The ending, yeah that was too drawn out and could have been handled differently – not sure how, but different. My ratings in the category of “revival of comic book heros” would have to be: 1) Batman Begins (as if there was any question), 2) Spider-man / Spiderman 2, 3) Tied here- X-men & Superman Returns.

  2. Now wait, did you like “X-Men” more than “X2” (or “X-Men: The Last Stand,” for that matter?). I only ask because you differentiated between “Spider-man” and “Spider-man 2″…but didn’t specify which “X-Men” movie.

    But yeah, “Batman Begins” rocked…watched it again last week and it’s still good. Now, originally, I couldn’t decide if I liked “Begins” better than the Tim Burton “Batman,” but after watching the latter again yesterday, I’m leaning more toward “Begins.” Thoughts?

  3. I think I liked X-men more than X2. Both of those were certainly better than X-Men: the last stand. Spiderman and Spiderman 2: that is difficult to say which is better. They are about equal and therefore I will leave it at that.

    But Batman…ah that really is the challenging one. I feel that Batman Begins (BB) is everything that the Tim Burton Batman should have been. It was still very dark (as Batman should be), but not so over the top dark that any hint of color is shocking (as in the Tim Burton Batman (TBB) ). Both were great movies, but I think that BB pulled it off better. Bruce Wayne was more believable in BB too. He was not as “scatterbrained” as he was in TBB. Now, there is really no denying that Jack Nicholson made a badass Joker. In my opinion, Begins is everything Batman should have been and more.

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