Sunday, June 16, 2013

Man of Steel Review (Rant)

First of all, I'd like to apologize for not posting lately.  Both of us have been going through a lot of stuff lately.  You know how life gets.

Anyway, I saw Man of Steel today against my better judgment in the hopes of possibly reviewing it for those of you like me who don't trust professional critics.  By the time I left the movie, the originally-planned review had become a rant.  And, at the risk of boring you all to death because this is pretty freaking long, here's my rant about what's wrong with Man of Steel.


Problems with Man of Steel:
  • Honestly, do the people who made this movie understand anything about real weather?
    • Tornado physics are messed up in the movie. That tornado was ridiculously freaking huge. And people from Kansas would understand the right way to react to a tornado (which came out of nowhere without any sort of storm or anything, which is also realistic (sarcasm wholeheartedly intended)). They wouldn't have all run to a freaking overpass—that kind of reaction gets you killed. You get out of your car and get in the ditch, cover your head with your hands, and wait it out. That's your best chance of survival. Hanging out under an overpass will KILL YOU.
      • And Jonathan Kent was just standing there all stoically, waving his hand like nothing was going on. a real tornado, he wouldn't have had the time to stand there stoically and tell Clark “No, son, it's okay, I'm ready to die so no one finds out what you are” with a freaking hand gesture. He'd have been thrown by the winds way before that.
      • The whole tornado scene was just bad.
    • Lois Lane could not possibly be wearing what she was wearing in Canada without being incredibly uncomfortable and frostbitten. I mean seriously. If “it gets down to 40 below at night” as Colonel Hardy suggested, she would have needed MUCH more protection from the cold. She should have gotten frostbite all over her freaking face, the way she was dressed. And the coat she was wearing was nowhere near thick enough to protect her. Ugh.
  • Jor-El: We felt like Krypton had lost something really important: the ability to choose. So we wanted to change that by having the first natural birth in a long time...and then sending our son to a whole new planet...where his destiny will be to be a bridge between Krypton and Earth. But don't worry, he totally has a choice in it all. But he has to do this. It's his destiny.
    •'t that sort of sound like the same sort of thing that was going on on Krypton? Children born with a specific purpose to their lives? But seriously, Kal-El definitely has a choice. He doesn't have to do anything with the codex implanted within his cells or anything. He doesn't have to care about Kryptonians and humans working together. Not at all.
  • The Jesus references were kind of annoying after a while.
    • Clark/Kal-El/Superman is 33 during this movie; Jesus was 33 when he died and "saved humanity".
    • Superman surrenders himself to the people who want to turn him over to the enemy.
      • He doesn't fight back, despite the fact that he could; it's definitely within his power to do so.  I mean, he didn't take a beating at that point, didn't know for sure that he could die, but it's basically the same thing.
    • Seriously...just...ugh.
  • The explanations the movie gives for Superman's powers and the powers of the other Kryptonians don't really make sense.
    • The comic book explanation for Superman's powers is that the radiation from Earth's yellow sun gives him enhanced speed, strength, the ability to fly, X-ray vision, heat vision, super hearing, etc. etc.
    • The movie explanation is something along these lines:
      • The sun's radiation gives him X-ray vision, heat vision, superhearing, etc. etc.
      • His enhanced speed, strength, invulnerability, and ability to fly come from the fact that Earth has less gravity than Krypton.
        • Which is fine...except that Superman grew up on Earth, so Krypton's gravity should have absolutely no effect on him. It makes sense for that to affect the other Kryptonians, Zod and his crew, but it should absolutely not affect Superman.
    • Also, how the hell does it make any sense that the sun's radiation doesn't affect Zod and his crew when they're in their suits, but the minute their helmets (or whatever) are damaged, it just suddenly affects them? I guess, yeah, Krypton has technology more advanced than our own, but that just seems farfetched.
    • Another thing about the whole powers thing...Superman flies around in space more than once during this movie. In space. Sure, he's technically still pretty damn close to Earth, but he's in space. But then suddenly when he's on the Kryptonian ship in Kryptonian atmosphere, he can't handle it? Need I remind you that he was just in freaking space! Space, which has a complete lack of atmosphere altogether! HE WAS JUST IN FREAKING SPACE, BUT A LITTLE BIT OF KRYPTONIAN ATMOSPHERE ALMOST KILLS HIM?! HOW THE FREAKING HELL DOES THAT MAKE ANY SENSE?!?!?!
  • Then there are the little things...
    • Like his costume. Was it really necessary to mess with his costume? It was perfectly fine except for the fact that they decided to get rid of the red briefs. They're important. You don't mess that much with a superhero's costume. It's just messed up.
    • Or the fact that they sort of perverted the Kryptonian language by pretending that “S” is a thing in their language, that apparently "means hope," and that's where the “S” on his costume came from.
    • How about the fact that Martha Kent made his costume in the comics? I mean, think about this. It doesn't even make sense that he got his costume where he got it from in the movie. The ship it was on had been sent to Earth over 18,000 years ago. How did a suit with the symbol of the El family get there? And how did it just randomly fit Superman? Ugh.
    • How about the fact that they basically decided that secret identities don't matter? I don't buy at all the fact that no one except Lois knows who he is. How many times did she freaking call his name during the second half of the movie? And no one else who was around her paid attention to that? How about the fact that Zod and his crew all headed to a specific farm house outside of Smallville, Kansas? No one noticed that? The freaking government and army didn't notice that? BS.
    • How about the fact that Superman repeatedly slammed, threw, and knocked his enemies into and through buildings and trains and gas stations and what not? Things that he knew would cause widespread damage and potentially deadly harm? I mean, Smallville was practically levelled by his stupid fight with Zod's underlings! How much freaking sense does that make? That's not the sort of thing Superman would do. He would draw his enemies out of town to limit casualties. All those people he told to go inside because it was safer? Lots of them had to have died when the buildings they were hiding inside crumbled due to the fight. But we're just going to forget about that, because it obviously doesn't matter.
    • How about the fact that practically the entire second half of the movie was CG, and obviously so? I understand that when there's a fight scene taking place in the sky between two superhuman characters or something like that, you can't actually do that with real people without it being campy. But I'm pretty sure technology has come far enough that they could have done those scenes in a more realistic way. (After all, one of the reasons the makers of this movie had for changing Superman's costume and stuff was to make the film “more realistic”. BS.)
    • Superman and Lois decided they were in love after knowing each other for, like, a day. Maybe two days at the most. I guess it makes sense according to movie logic; after all, look at any Disney movie that involves a romantic relationship of some kind. Cinderella fell in love with her prince charming after a couple of hours at the very most. I mean, seriously. Still kind of stupid, though.
    • Superman, according to comics lore, never drinks. But there's a scene in Man of Steel in which he's seen drinking a Budwiser. Goodbye straight-edge Superman, hello potential alcoholic.
  • And then there's the biggie. The HUGE thing that just ruined the movie for me (not that it wasn't already ruined because it was AWFUL).
    • Superman's a murderer.
      • Yep, according to this movie, Superman is a murderer. Sure, he was saving a bunch of people from getting killed, but he killed Zod in order to save them. Superman is a boy scout. He has ridiculously black-and-white morals. I find it annoying as heck, because the world isn't black and white, but that's part of Superman's personality. Except in this movie.
        • Why exactly couldn't he fly Zod out of the building? Why couldn't he tighten his headlock on him and knock him out? Why couldn't he do something, anything else other than kill him? Superman always finds another way. I mean always.
        • But I guess that's too straight-edge for 2013. Superman's a pansy unless he can kill someone.
        • Perhaps the biggest problem I have with this whole thing is that Superman didn't care. Sure, immediatley afterward, he was pissed, mad at himself, depressed. But that really didn't last very long. The next thing we see is him telling the general to stop trying to figure out “where he hangs his cape” in a very typical superhero-banter way. Sure, he recently killed a guy, but he doesn't seem to care at all. Back to the banter.
          • If they really had to have him kill Zod which I think they definitely could have gotten around, but whatever, they should have had some sort of closure with the whole thing. But what happens is that Superman kills Zod and immediately moves on. There's no discussion whatsoever of the event. It's just “whelp, bad guy's gone, we're good”. No closure, no discussion of the fact that Superman just killed someone, no reflection at all on whether or not there was another way. It's just “kill the bad guy and move on, forget about the whole thing,” ignore the fact that the man we want our children to look up to just got away with murder simply because the other guy was going to commit genocide. I get that Zod was a jerk. I get that he needed to be stopped. BUT SERIOUSLY, THINK ABOUT IT! SUPERMAN JUST KILLED SOMEONE! SUPERMAN! SUPERMAN!!!

Okay, granted, some of these things are nit-picky. Most people won't care about the comics-specific stuff. But how about the crappy CG throughout the second half of the movie pretty much making 3D obsolete? How about the lack of logic in a lot of this movie? (Jor-El and his whole “You have the privilege of choice, but your destiny is to do what I want you to do” thing? The lack of scientific logic in relation to Superman and the other Kryptonians' powers?

Finally, there's nothing original about this film. Seriously. It's a mix of Avatar, Brave New World, Star Trek (2009), Secret Origins (Justice League Animated), and pretty much any disaster movie ever. Not to mention we really don't need another Superman origin story. Who doesn't know where Superman came from? Who doesn't know who he is and how he got his powers and all that jazz? Moreover, this is basically a repeat of Superman II from 1980. Same old Zod wants revenge thing. Ugh.

I was planning to give this movie "X out of 5 stars" before seeing it. However, this movie actually failed to live up to my extremely low expectations. A star is a positive thing, a badge of pride, a mark of Man of Steel gets nothing, in my book. Absolutely nothing. Nothing, nothing, nothing.

You want to know what I want to see? A live-action film of The Death of Superman. That's what I want to see. Because, as Batman put it during Infinite Crisis, the last time Superman really inspired anyone was when he was dead.


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