I would love to say that I saw Man of Steel and I absolutely loved it, but it would be a bald-faced lie. In fact, I can’t even honestly say that I liked Man of Steel. And I wanted to, so much! I even tried but to no avail. It’s a bad movie, plain and simple.
There are so many things that are wrong with the movie, the story is really bad, the screenplay equally dismal, bad acting, bad editing and very very bad casting! Seriously, they looked far and wide and the best they could come up with was Henry Cavill!? Seriously!!! This guy makes a plain wooden plank seem more interesting. Here is a man cursed with one and only one expression, no wait, he’s actually got no expression. He smiles maybe once or twice in the course of the entire 2 and half hour exercise and both times, it looked so weird. Like his face would split in half. Then there’s Amy Adams, by all accounts a good actress and yet when I heard that she was playing Lois Lane in the movie, I was crushed because you only have to read a couple of Superman comics and know instantly that they missed the mark by a mile. But I rallied my spirits and decided to give her a chance; well I now know that they missed it by more than just a mile. I dare you to overlook her sagging cheeks and the fact that she looks really OLD!!! She really does! Just because you’re a good actor doesn’t automatically make you a good fit in an action blockbuster and especially not in a superhero movie, not when you look old and unfit. Plus she pretty much mumbled all her lines and looked only vaguely interested in what was going on. I can actually say the same for most of the principle cast: Kevin Costner, Russell Crowe and Michael Shannon. What was even more jarring was Shannon’s very strange accent, and then there were those times when he lapsed into a Southern American drawl. At least make an effort to sound like you come from a different planet!!
I actually like Zack Snyder and I think that he’s got vision and is a good director but this movie showcases none of that. It was badly directed but the bulk of the blame lies with the story and screenplay since these were the things that sunk Man of Steel for sure. I think that Snyder should’ve had full creative control from the very beginning and some one other than David Goyer should’ve written the script. Even if you like what he did with Batman (which I don’t) you simply can’t treat Batman and Superman in the same way. They are fundamentally different characters with extremely different personalities. They are pretty much polar opposites of each other. Superman is noble, charming and awe-inspiring. Here is a man who flies for god sake, you cannot rationalize that. The more you try to make him REAL, the more ludicrous he seems. Man of Steel had no charm and certainly no awe. There was none of the joy and thrill of flying (simply making the actor smile like a maniac does not equate with joy!!) Even Superman Returns with all its flaws handled this aspect better. Singer’s Superman was gentle and more subtle where his powers were concerned. We all know how powerful he is, you do not need to jam it down our throats by making his take off sound like a gunshot. There’s no fluidity to his actions, no grace. He’s all brawn and little else. The Superman I loved while growing up was woefully missing; instead I got this high-on-crack-and-steroids imitation act. The only saving grace of this movie was Faora. I loved her and actually ended up rooting for her (Faora – Badass Extraordinaire!!). You know there is something fundamentally wrong with your movie when the villain’s crony is more interesting than your main character. And you’re doomed when the trailers that showed before your movie have a better recall value than the movie itself, considering how long it was. The fight scenes were okay, nothing extraordinary. There was a lot bashing up, crashing through buildings and office spaces, which also got old surprisingly fast. The fight scene I liked best, was the one in Smallville but that’s it. The fight scenes in the Transformer movies were more coherent than the mess I was subjected to.
And how can I possibly forget that headache inducing camera work. Was the camera-person also on crack?? I understand if you go hand-held when you’re shooting an action scene but if the camera starts shaking like hell in a scene where the characters are only talking, you have a problem. I am so happy and relieved that I saw this movie in 2D, in 3D I would’ve walked out with a migraine from hell. The fight scenes on Krypton were also very chaotic, too often the camera was too close to the actors to truly give you a sense of the action.
DC truly does not seem to know how handle its characters and here they are, gearing up for a Justice League movie. How the hell are you going to rationalize someone like the Martian Manhunter, another alien or Wonder Woman, a demigoddess!? Please do the fans a favour and stay away from Wonder Woman. You’ve proven time and again that you simply can’t deal with a female character that has NO weakness. When it comes to transitioning their characters from comics to movies, Marvel does that way better and part of that was having a master plan that included all the characters that were gonna be involved in Avengers, great casting and great movies. Marvel movies do not possess that air of self-importance and its so refreshing. If DC really wants to make a Justice League they, along with Warner Brothers will need to think up a new game plan. And one that goes beyond “we want to make a Justice League movie because Marvel made an Avengers movie.”
All in all, Man of Steel turned out be yet another cinematic dud of epic proportions. I’m sure it’ll make pots and pots of money but the movie still sucks, as does their interpretation of this iconic DC character. And that is very sad indeed!