Batman v Superman Comic Con Trailer and Impressions


My Thoughts:

I was not pleased with the first trailer for this movie. If nothing else, i can say that this trailer is a vast improvement. Even if i don’t like what the movie is aiming for, this trailer at lest makes it seem that it’s going to be the best possible version of what it’s trying to be. The action scenes here all look well shot and this trailer does a much better job establishing the conflict between Batman and Superman. And thank you who ever it was that told Zack Snyder that he’s not allowed to drain all the color out this time around, you’re the true hero here.

I’m still not sold, but i am not as livid as i was. I still hate the fact that our first cinematic gathering of these two is taking so much inspiration for a Frank Miller book (real talk here: screw Frank Miller), but if that’s what it has to be, at least it’s being handled with something approaching competence.

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Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Tearer Trailer and Impressions


My Thoughts:

Other than the fact that this looks more like a Zack Snyder film than “Man of Steel” did, this is exactly what i was expecting from this trailer. Dark, joyless, and completely missing the point of Superman as a character. Where Marvel has constantly made its decisions based on what’s fun or exciting, Warner Bros./DC has been looking at comic archs that sold well, meaning way too much inspiration has been coming from mid-90’s comics and the comics that lead up to that creative dead-zone in comic book history. But as much as i can (and most likely, will) complain about this trailer, there are bits and pieces i like. Most notably the opening voice over leading too the statue of Superman with “False God” painted on its chest.

If you have to go the “dark and gritty” rout for Superman, that is an interesting enough set up. While Superman himself is always supposed to be idealization of what mankind can be, the idea of centering his main conflict on people saying to themselves “are we really okay with this being of nearly god-like power just hanging around unsupervised”? It also doesn’t hurt the film that Awesomeness Personified, Neil Degrasse Tyson himself added to the voice over.

So where does the trailer go wrong? Well, mostly it all goes back to Warner Bros/DC saying that these are all going to be super-serious films, and too me, darkness doesn’t work without light and levity. To me, dark characters (especially superheros) when that are effectively taking on sin to save innocence from doing so.

For example: in Garth Ennis’s run on “The Punisher” (one of the darkest and most violent comics i’ve read) there is a scene where Frank Castle kills the Pimp of an informant of his because the Pimp had a 14 year old as one of his girls. In an other scene Nick Furry beats a military general senseless for ordering a hit on a little girl. No Matter how bad these two men are, we are reminded that they are trying to do right for those who can’t. They become monsters so others don’t have too. That is what this trailer lacks, that is what “Man of Steel” lacked and, form all given context, that is what all of DC’s movies are going to lack: any indication that our heroes think there is something worth saving.

It also doesn’t help that Batman’s “bat-armor” helmet…thing…looked like Batman’s mask from “The Lego Movie”, but that’s a compliant for another day…

A Poor Man Rambles: Batman vs Superman-Who Won!


 

With the last review having been published, it’s time to see who won this battle of God. Each hero’s movie scored accordingly:

Superman:

Movie 1: 3/5
Movie 2: 4/5
Movie 3:1.5/5
Movie 4: 0/5
Movie 5: 1/5
Movie 6: 3/5

This give Superman an average score of 2.08/5

Batman scored:

Movie 1: 2/5
Movie 2: 3/5
Movie 3: 2/5
Movie 4: 1/5
Movie 5: 4/5
Movie 6: 4.5/5
Movie 7: 2/5

Giving Batman an average score of 2.6/5
With a lead of .52, Batman wins the day. This victory really comes more due to the fact that we may never see anything as bad as Superman 4 in our lifetime. But it doesn’t hurt that The Dark Knight was just an outstanding film. So what did you think? Who won in your eyes? Leave a comment below and let me know!

Batman vs Superman: Man of Steel


Director: Zack Snyder
Screenplay By: David S Goyer
Release Date: June 14, 2013
Run Time: 143 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Score: 3/5

I saw this movie midnight on opening day with some friends of mine. When we got out of the theater and for the next few days all I could talk about was how cool the movie was. But as the weeks began to pass and the more I thought about the movie, the angrier I began to get. So much didn’t add up when you thought about it, and the character is so bastardized it’s almost comical to call this a Superman movie.
But after rematching it I have to say, I still found the act of watching the film enjoyable. It has flaws, big ones, some inexcusable, but it wasn’t the chore to rewatch that I was expecting. However, one of the things I noticed is that some of the issues I had in the theater weren’t in the dvd version at all. For example: I remember when I was in the theater thinking that the Han Zimmer single bass note “soundtrack” that was popular at the time was way to loud and that it was giving me a headache. Now, maybe the remixed the music for home viewing or maybe they took out his score all together, but I didn’t notice it here at all. It’s small things like that that made me have to up the score from the 2.5 I was expecting to give the film. So, after all my previous bitching about the film, let me make one thing clear: This is a much better movie at home than it was in the theater. It still isn’t perfect, bit i’ll give credit where credit is due. So, what did I like, what do I still hate? Let’s find out!
The film starts on Krypton and by now you know exactly what happens. The planet blows up, a young boy is sent to earth as his planet dies, so on and so forth. But with that said, this is still a rather interesting take on Superman’s origins. Here, General Zod isn’t just trying to take over Krypton, but instead is coup has a legitimate reason behind it: the incompetence of Kryptons leaders is what leaded to the destruction of their home world. This almost sets Zod up as some kind of antihero witch is interesting. This is kind of reinforced throughout the film as well, with his motivations literally being “i want to bring my people back”. But this also leads to one of the films issues. Zod needs to terraform Earth to bring Krypton back, but no reason is ever give as to why it has to be Earth. Why not go to Mars? If someone had managed to say this to the guy we probably could have avoided much of this.
Once this section of the movie is out of the way we go to…Clark as a grown man. Interesting choice. We watch as he works on a fishing boat when a distress call comes in. An oil taker is on fire and Clark, being the big blue boyscout, goes to help the people taped. He manages to help, but an explosion knocks him into the ocean. And here we get one of the movies many, many flashbacks. And we come to another one of my many, many issues with the film.
From this point till Clark meets with Lois at his fathers grave we get flashback after flashback and it really messes with the pacing of the film. All of this info could have been condensed and given too us all at once. But this also brings up another issue: Clark has no character in the film. See, he’s been movie from town to town, so it makes since that we don’t really meet the “real” Clark, but that doesn’t make him as a character any less boring.
Moving on with the plot, Clark and Lois meet for the first time when the government finds something is the arctic that is too old and to big to be a submarine. Clark goes to see what it is and find out that it is pone of his peoples colonization ships, and this functions as this franchises “Fortress of Solitude. Lois also makes her way to the ship, but ends up getting injured. Clark fixes her up, but this leads to her looking to find out who he is. Once she does however, she drops the story at his request.
At around the same time Clark movies the ship and uses it’s A.I. (modeled after his father, Jor-El) to learn about his people and gains his suit.

Henry Cavill as Superman


Unbeknown to our hero however, activating the ship also activated it’s distress signal. So, when Zod and his crew find a way out of the Phantom Zone, they know exactly where to fins him. The come to earth and send out a message saying they want their man or the earth will pay. Clark decides that he’ll turn himself into the human race, so that they know that he isn’t a treat to them. And again, we have another issue. The editing and pacing here movies way to fast. We movie from plot point to plot point with literally nothing connecting them together. For example, there is a scene were Superman is talking to a General about their plan, and the general says he is under orders to turn Superman over. Then there is a jump cut to Superman and Lois talking in the desert. There is nothing connecting this two moments. For contrast, lets look at the “Harry Potter” books and movies. When you really looks at those, you’ll notice that there really isn;t much plot in the early books and movies. But people love them because we spend so much time getting to know the world and characters. A truly great story should do both: give us plot and time to know the characters. But throughout the film we don;t really get to know our hero because the movie is more interested in moving thought the plot as fast as possible. This was also an issue in “Thor: The Dark World”, but even there we got a few scenes to further the relationships with the characters. Here we really don’t get that.
Michael Shannon as Zod

Michael Shannon as Zod


Anyways, Zod tells Clark about his plan and the last 40 minuets of the movie is basically one long fight scene. And yeah, all the destruction did bother me, but it all looks really good and I do have to say, with the exception of one part the fight is fun to watch. It’s almost like watching a live action “Dragon Ball Z” fight with the way the super-speed is used. So if nothing else, this film has the best action out of every movie i’ve reviewed this month.
That one scene is were Superman has to fly around the world to stop the second transforming devise. You see, there isn’t really a reason for this to be a fight scene. Twice now they’ve set up that Clark doesn’t react well to Kryptons environment anymore. So, having him have to face it head on could have made for an interesting conflict while also give us a break from the action. But no, this movie s all about the action, so that’s all we get.
And now the moment you’ve all been waiting for: Zod’s death scene. After Superman and the military manage to send Zod’s men back to Phantom Zone, Zod has nothing left to lose and he and Superman, both having a good handle on their superpowers go at it. Superman manages to beat Zod, but Zod uses his heat vision to threaten the life of a nearby family. In order to save them Superman snaps Zods neck.
Now, Superman killing Zob in and of itself doesn’t bother me too much. But, like with the “why not go to mars” thing earlier, there are so many other options that this just feels out of place. Superman could have just flown up with Zod or covered his eyes. This was very much a lame “we need to end the movie now” ending.
This movie has issues. A lot of them. The pacing movies the story too slowly in the beginning and then too fact from the mid point on. Then each part of the film, Krypton-Clark Pre Superman-Superman Vs Zod, each feel like radically different films. But the main issue is that no one knows who or what this Superman is. They know what they don’t want him to be, but they don’t know what they want to replace that with. Because of this out main character is just boring. But again, I didn’t hate rewatching the movie. I may never choosier to watch it again like I may with “Superman 2”, but if this is on i’ll sit through it. I think the real question is: does it bother me that this is the version of Superman that is being used to spring bored the fist live action meeting of Superman and Batman? My answer: yeah, it’s less that ideal, but it doesn’t bother me the same way it does thinking that the first live action Transformers movie was the Michael Bay abomination. So join me tomorrow as I look at “The Dark Knight”.

Batman vs Superman: Batman Begins


Director: Christopher Nolan
Screenplay By: Christopher Nolan, David S. Goyer
Release Date: June 15, 2005
Run Time: 140 minuets
Rating: PG-13
Score: 4/5

After five movies (and around 10 hours) of pure, unfiltered crap it is nice to watch a movie that was actually pretty good again. It’s so nice to be watching a good movie again that I really had to stop and think about this review. Did I like this movie so much because it’s simply better than the last five I watched? If I hadn’t forced myself to watch “Superman Returns” and “Batman and Robin”, would I still think so highly of “Batman Begins”? Well…yeah. This really is just as good as I remember it being and it is a kick ass film. It’s not perfect, but this is probably my favorite take on Batman’s origins.
The film starts with our new Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) locked up in a prison somewhere is South Asia. We learn that Bruce has been travailing the world on a vigilante quest of sorts. That is, until he had to commit some crimes of his own in order to survive and ended up getting caught. But this Brice Wayne doesn’t care, no sir. This Bruce Wayne is angry and bitter, looking to beat the crap out of whoever he can get his hands on, so being in prison is almost like being a kid in a candy shop. Or a Bull in a China shop.

Is Liam Neeson ever not cool?

Is Liam Neeson ever not cool?

But then one day, a man named Henri Ducard (Liam Neeson) comes to him and offers him a better way. Once Wayne is freed from prison he goes and meets with Ducard, who helps him train as a ninja, to become a member of The League of Shadows. The League is an ancient order who have been fighting crime and injustice of ages and who want Bruce to be their man in Gotham City. Everything goes well for Bruce until the time comes for him to prove himself by killing a helpless man convicted of murder. As we all know, Killing is the one thing Bruce Wayne isn’t willing to do (Something some OTHER directors seemed to have forgotten). Bruce manages to burn down the training compound and fight his way to freedom, and also manages to save Ducards life in the proses.
Once free from The League Bruce makes his way back home and we meet our Alfred for the franchise, this time played by Michael Caine. And this man is my definitive Alfred. To me Caine’s Alfred is the perfect blend of all the previous incarnations. He has the Military background like he did in…Year One…i think it was….but is still compassionate and a father-figure for Bruce. I’ve yet to see another Alfred I like more. Continuing with the story: Bruce tells Alfred about his plan, to become an incorruptible symbol in order to bring justice to Gotham. But he has to keep Batman and Brice Wayne separate. Where Michael Keaton’s Bruce Wayne was a recluse who went unseen by most people, this Bruce Wayne is playboy. This Bruce Wayne goes out with two girls at once and acts like an idiot and…is so over the top you have to wonder how no one sees through the ruse to be honest.

I really like this batsuit, but the mask looks a little off IMO.

I really like this batsuit, but the mask looks a little off IMO.

Bruce then goes to Wayne Enterprise, looking for a job in the applied sciences department. The new C.E.O. agrees and Bruce meets Lucius Fox (Morgan Freeman). Fox tells Bruce that applied sciences is basically career dead end where the new C.E.O. Put him and all his projects that would never be manufactured. Fox shows Bruce some of these projects and Bruce asks if he can “barrow” some of the equipment. Fox, seeing through Bruce’s playboy persona instantly agrees, but doesn’t want to know any details.
And with that, Batman is born…nearly an hour into the film. That is one my my issues with the film. While this time is used wisely I do remember asking my self a few times (especially the first time I watched the film) “when is batman going to get here?” Adult audiences shouldn’t have much of an issue with this but I can’t argue to much with those who say they find the first half or so of the movie boring.
After getting his alternate persona established Bruce goes out for his first night as Batman and does pretty well. He manages to stop a drug shipment for coming into the city and also catches not only the small guys helping unload it, but Mod Boss Carmine Falcone as well. The police show up and find everyone tied up with enough evidence to go to court with. That’s one of the things I like the most about this movie and the franchise as a whole: they do bring up the fact that without being able to posses the criminals everything Batman does is pretty much useless.
Unfortunately for Batman, he learns that only half the drugs where heading towards the streets. So the next night Batman goes and catches up to one of the dirtier cops and interrogates him to learn where the other half of the drug shipment was going. And here we come to another part of the film that i’m…still questioning. Like I said in my review for Tim Burtons “Batman”, that incarnation of the character knew he was frightening, and thus didn’t need tom poster so much. In this film this is literally his second night out or so he does kind of need to prove he’s not to be screwed with. But shouldn’t tying up and dropping the cop do that? Did Nolan and Bale really feel the voice was necessary? I don;t hate it as much as others do, but it does feel a little too over the top in my opinion.

I really wish Scare Crow got more screen time, he was pretty awesome.

I really wish Scare Crow got more screen time, he was pretty awesome.

It turns out the the other drugs were going to a man named Dr Jonathan Crane, who has been experimenting with the drugs to create weaponized fear gas for his Boss, Ra’s Al Ghul. Crane has been experimenting his drugs on the inmates of Arkham Asylum, even forging his own secret identity, Scare Crow. His mask helps shield him from his own toxins while also helping to scare his subjects even more. Once he had it perfected Craine started dumping the toxin in Gotham’s water supply. This confuses most of the police as the toxin has to be inhaled in order to take effect. We soon learn that Ra’s Al Ghul’s men had stolen a new weapon that superheats an enemy’s water turning it into steam.
Ra’s Al Ghul and his men load the weapon on a train and head towards Gotham’s water plant. As they start moving the water mains begin to burst and the poorer neighborhoods being to get gassed and people start going crazy. Luckily Batman manages to get onto the train and disable the weapon while Gordon blows up the rail way. The train crashes and the day is saved.
There is a lot i’ve left out, because there is a lot going on in this film. I mean a lot. This is one of the most densely packed movies (superhero or otherwise) that i’ve seen in a long long time. And honestly (even though the film and series is rather good), I think that complexity is why Marvel Studio’s has done so well. None of their films have been this heavy or complex. Unlike Marvel thought, this has had the opposite effect of DC’s other films. While “Green Lantern” was never going to be very good, I think the tonal whiplash is part of what turned people off of the film. So much so that when the next Superman movie was announced the heads at Warner Bro’s felt they needed to make it more like these films.
But cultural impact aside, this was still a very good movie. The darker tone fits perfectly with the character and it’s nice to have an actor in the lead who can do a good Bruce Wayne and Batman. However, Nolan’s desire to make the film “realistic” does suck out some of the magic of the comics. For example, in the comics Ra’s Al Ghul is immortal, living forever through the Lazarus Pit. Here, the name Ra’s Al Ghul lives forever, passed down to give the impression of immortality. That is no where near as interesting, but it is more realistic. In the end, the film make not be ashamed of it’s comic book heritage like tomorrows movie is, but it is doing everything in it’s power to not be seen as a “comic book” movie; while it does work, it is kind of a shame to see that idea still being so prevalent in pop culture.

Batman Vs Superman: Batman Forever


Director: Joel Schumacher
Screenplay By: Lee Batchler, Janet Scott Batchler, Akiva Goldsman
Release Date: June 9, 1995
Run Time: 121 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Score: 2/5

Unlike those who saw this when it was first released, I knew to expect a wholly different animal as compared to last time. I knew to expect more camp, more jokes, more silliness and yes, even the Bat Nipples. So the real question is: does knowing about this shift in tone beforehand make the movie any better? Could the decade plus of fan bitching and moaning be over something that really didn’t make the film that bad? Well, yes and no. Like with “Superman 3” there is a new found emphasis on comedy that doesn’t always hold up too well. But, knowing where Schumacher’s visual sensibility were coming from did make certain changes more tolerable. Is the movie good overall, no not really, but it’s not that much worse than either of Burton’s films and is a much stronger third entry than “Superman 3” was. So, what was good? What was bad? What was overblown by nearly two decades of fanboy bitching? Let’s find out.
The film opens with one of its worst jokes. After Batman suits up, Alfred (Michael Gough) asks if his could persuade him to take a sandwich. Batman’s response? “I get drive though”. Yeah, the bad guys will just hold their evil plans while you’re waiting in line at McDonald. But hell, maybe he should. The Batmobile this time looks like something from a McDonald’s happy mean, so maybe it’s fitting.

The new and ugly Batmobile

The new and ugly Batmobile

We then cut to batman in Gotham. The first thing I noticed s that apparently the citizens of Gotham hated the look of their city as much as I did and went for a completely rehauled the city. I can only imagine how much that cost the tax payers. And yes, I hate this look as much as the Tim Burton version. Where Tim Burton’s Gotham looked too cartoonish, but this may as well be animated. I understand that they entire idea of this film was to be as statistically and tonally different from the last one as possible, but DAMN did they over do it.
We find out that Batman was called because Harvey “Two Face” Dent (Tommy Lee Jones) is trying to rob a bank. Why? Because it’s the second national bank of Gotham on the second anniversary of Batman arresting him. Because the man who is obsessed with duality and chance would care about something as arbitrary as that. We meet Two Face as he’s deciding whether or not to kill one of the banks guards. He flips his coin and it lands heads so, always being true to the coin…He throws the guards into a vault that we soon learn is filled with acid. Congratulations movie: you have no understanding of your characters.
Two Face’s plan works and Batman inters the vault to save the guard. Ones he’s inside however, two face lifts the vault out using a helicopter and the vault starts filling up with acid. It’s about here that I understood what the movie was aiming for. While a Tim Burton is only the producer on the film, this film feels very much like his take on the 1960’s Adam West Batman. If you took that show and put Tim Burton in charge, and you’d have something pretty close to this.
As you could probably have guessed with us being only five minutes or so into the movie, Batman escapes the vault but Two Face gets away as well. From the outside of the vault Batman manages to use his grappling gun to sling the vault back to its proper place inside the bank. Now, I don’t know everything about physics, but i’m pretty sure that was bullshit.
We then cut to Wayne Enterprises, where Bruce Wayne (this time played by Val Kilmer) is inspecting his R&D department. An overly excited Edward Nygma (Jim Carrey) trying to get Bruce Wayne’s approval for a project that is being shut down. What is this project that just has to be show to the boss? It’s a device that altars your brainwaves to make T.V. Images look 3D. And here we get another stupid moment. Bruce says to schedule a meeting with his secretary with a full list of technical specks. The head of the company basic said: “Yes, i’d like to see this”. Nygma’s boss couldn’t really tuch him after that, not until Bruce had his chance to see the project. However, out of fear for his job, Nygma says he needs an answer right then. Why? Because we need a piss poor reason for him to become a villain later.
Bruce tells him no as messing with peoples brainwaves raises too many ethic questions. Latter that night, after everyone has gone home, Nygma keeps working on the project, vowing that he’ll show Bruce. He’s caught by his manager however, and he ends up killing him. Nygma also learns that his machine can make him smarter. I’m sure that that will have no baring on the rest of the plot whatsoever.
Bruce Wayne ends up taking Dr. Chase Meridian (Nicole Kidman), a woman he met earlier as Batman, to a circus he was invited to after giving a large donation. Why is he donating money to a for profit circus? Because the movie has to show us he’s rich somehow, right? The two of the watch as The Flying Graysons do a higher act. All seems to be going well until Two Face and his goons raid the circus trying to get bat man to show up. They set a bomb and start raising it up to the top of the circus tent. The Graysons then decide to try and help get hid of the bomb. The Youngest, Dick(Chris O’Donnell) , goes to the top where he waits to push it into the river. The rest of his family hang on to the suspenders as they try to push the bomb up. Unfortunately Two Face sees them and shoots them down. After Dick gets rid of the bomb he goes back to see his family was dead.
Gosh! A young man who’s family was killed by a madman. This couldn’t be setting up some kind of parallel between him and Bruce Wayne, could it? Next thing you know, Bruce will have to adopt the kid and end up with a sidekick with a silly name like “Robin”. How silly would that be right?
If you know your comics you know that that is exactly what happens. But I like that Dick is angry. Even after he finds out who Batman is his first thought and goal is only to kill Two Face.

Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones as our Villains

Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones as our Villains

Going back to our Villains, Nygman, now having taken on the persona of “The Riddler” has been leaving Bruce riddles and has managed to find Two Face’s hide out. The two men then make a plot: Two Face will help Riddler steel money to produce his invention, while Riddler will use it to help Two Face kill Batman. Their plan actually works, and soon Edward Nygma is Gothams new Bruce Wayne. While at a party Nygman even manages to find out who Batman is. He and Two face then brake into Bruce’s house and destroy the Batcave. Bruce is down to one Batsuit as well as Robin, who he now has no choice but to except help from.

Chris O'Donnell as Robin

Chris O’Donnell as Robin

Bruce puts together all the riddles given to him and learns of the whereabouts of our villains. With Robin taking the sea and He himself taking to the air, out heroes go to kick some ass. How do they do? Well, Robin is almost instantly caught and Batman takes way too long to get out of a death trap. But this does leads to one of my favorite Batman moments ever. The Riddler has Robin and Dr. Chase tyed up and sends them both to their death, telling Batman that he can save only one: Batman’s Partner or Bruce Wayne’s Lover. After saving them both Batman tells the Riddler that he did because he is both Batman and Bruce Wayne. He chooses to be both. This is literally more character development Batman has ever gotten since he was invented back in 1939.
Anyways, Batman ends up destroying The Riddler’s machine with in turns destroys The Riddlers mind. Two Face gets them in a spot where he could very easily kill all three of them, but Batman reminds him about his coin. Once Two Face flips it, Batman throws a bunch of others into the air. This confuses and I guess scares Two Face and he ends up falling to his death. And with that, the Day is saved.
The question I asked earlier was “doesn’t understanding Schumacher directing decisions before watching the movie make it any better”? And, to some extent, yeah, it did. While I don;t like the new look of Gotham, I understand why it looks the way it does. And when all the goons and gangs looks like something out of a silver age comic book, I can’t say it was too off putting. But that doesn’t excuse the bad jokes and poor writing. If this was meant to be more along the lines of Tim Burton’s take of the Adam West show that would have been okay, but everything here is like the worst parts of that show Burton-ed up. Honestly, i’d really like to see them retry this idea, but spending way more time on the script. But there were something’s I liked as well. A fight with Dick Grayson against a mod of gang members is the best the series has to offer so far as everyone is free from the restraints of the big rubber costumes. And when The Riddler was destroying the Batcave it was kind of hart breaking. And if they ever did do a remake of the Adam West show Jim Carrey would have been a great Riddler. But as a fallow up to the Tim Burton film it falls flat. However, it falls flat in the same way the Burton films did, just worse. Unfortunately, the next film is infinitely and infamously worse. Join me on Monday as I take a look “Superman 4: The Quest for Peace” before we end out look at the original quartet for each character.

Batman Vs Superman: Superman 2


Director: Richard Lester
Screenplay By: Mario Puzo, David Newman, Leslie Newman
Release Date: June 19, 1981
Run Time: 127 minutes
Rating: PG
Score: 4/5

Superman 2, compared to Tim Burton’s “Batman”, is a pretty interesting look at just how much better writing and a sincere passion for a project always makes for a better movie. Yesterday I had said that In “Batman” there was way too little Batman. Well, in this film there is even less Superman. But as you can clearly see by the score I gave the movie, I clearly think this is a superior film. How does that happen? Well, the film makers here clearly cared more. So lets take a look at “Superman 2” and discus what exactly made this film so good.
The film starts with a recap of the last film. It re-shows us General Zod and his minions being taped in the phantom zone, Krypton being destroyed and Clark landing on earth. Then it cuts to Superman’s meeting with Lex Luthor and how Superman managed to stop one of the bombs Luthor sent by throwing it into space. That’s were the recap stops. We fallow the bomb Superman sent into space as it travels endlessly and aimlessly throughout space. As Newton’s First Law of Motion states, all objects in motion will stay in motion unless acted upon by an outside force. And what outside force stops the bomb? Zod’s prison. Yes, with in a few minuets of the film starting out Villains have escaped and headed straight for earth.
At this same time Lex Luthor, still in prison after the events of the last film, has found a way of tracking Superman’s movements and is plotting his own prison break. Like in the last film Luthor and him minions are mostly here for comedic relief, but I think the managed to find a nice balance this time around. He’s still a threat, but still rather funny as well. For example: when he brakes out of prison. His old girlfriend brakes them out with a hot air balloon. Luthor sends Otis to look for the ladder, but it keeps swinging behind him. It was a nice bit of physical, not quite slapstick, comedy. However even with all the scenes like this, with out Luthor’s discovery, the climax really couldn’t have happened. And what was that big discovery? He manages to find Superman’s Fortress of Solitude.
And what about our hero’s? What have they been up to? Well, at the end of the last movie Lois begins to suspect Clark is Superman, and goes out of her way to prove it. Even going so far as to throw herself out of a window 30 stories up knowing he wont let her die. Witch he doesn’t, but he uses his speed, super breath and heat vision to make her safe(ish) landing seem more like a coincidence. They are then told to do a human interest story, posing as a married couple at Niagara Falls. While there a young boy (being the worlds biggest dumb-ass) falls over the railing and strait into the the lake below. This forces Clark to become Superman and save the boy. This reignites Lois’ belief that Clark is Superman. So, when they get back to their Hotel she shoots him at point blank range. Clark tells here that if she had been wrong, Clark Kent would have been dead. To witch Lois can only retort “From a blank”?
Now free from the constraints of his hidden identity Clark takes Lois to the Fortress of Solitude and the two of them spend some real quality time together. As this is happening, Zod and his crew begin taking over a small town in the USA. Clark and Lois become so happy together, that Clark ends up forfeiting his powers so he can be with her, instead of having to be a hero as well. And what is Zod doing? He takes over the U.S. By taking over the white house. Unfortunately only finds out about this after getting his ass kicked in a bar fight and has to make his way back to the north pole by foot.
Luckily, Jor-El knew to expect this, and did create a fail safe, but it would cut off there ability to communicate forever after that. So, with his powers back Superman Heads back to the City in order to deal with Zod. The fight scene is actually pretty cool. It reminded me a lot of the fight between Superman and Zod in “Man of Steel”. In fact, I kind of prefer this version of the fight. Sure, the effects aren’t as good, but it’s shoot and edited much better so I could keep up with the action much easier. And even through Superman and Zod do go through a few buildings here like the due in “Man of Steel”, it ever feels like Superman doesn’t care about the people he’s trying to protect. That could be the result of this being a more family orientated movie that “Man of Steel” was, but in the end, I think Superman should always be shown to be compassionate, even when pushed to his braking point.
The Film ends with every one in the Fortress of Solitude, were Superman does a reverse version of what took away his powers. This Strips Zod and his crew of theirs, while Superman keeps his own. He then kills Zod, Lois kills his female counter part, and the bid dumb brute…tries to fly and falls to his death. So why don’t people complain about this like they do with “Man of Steel”? Well, because Superman does that dumb ass “world spin time travel” thing from the first movie and Zod and his crew go back to being taped in the phantom Zone. I guess the film crew though that that would get less stupid if they did it again. So the film ends with everything back to normal. Lois has no idea who Superman is, Zod is no longer a threat and there is peace once again. But Clark is back to having to be the bumbling idiot that can;t get any attention from the woman he loves after getting a taste of real happiness, so the film doesn’t end completely on a high note.
What makes this movie so good in my opinion are the stakes and the relatability of Clark’s dilemma. I think every one understand the yearning to be happy and how our responsibilities can often get in the way of that. And at the same time, Zod and his underlings are showed early on to be a real threat. So when we learn that Clark made the wrong choice, we have a real understand of just how much there is to lose. Zod wont just sell land at a ridiculous price if he beats Superman, he’ll kill nearly everyone alive. If it wasn’t for that cop-out ending being done again and the poorly aged effects, this would have been a perfect movie. As is though, this is my favorite Superman movie to date. Maybe not my favorite Superhero movie, but defiantly my favorite Superman incarnation.
Join me tomorrow when I take a look a “Batman Returns” as I continue “Batman Vs Superman Month”.

 

***Note: Sorry for the Lack of pictures this time, but nearly all the cast is the same as they were in the last film. Plus, with how old the effects look there really isn’t much that is worth looking at outside of the film itself. With those two things combines, i can’t really justify spending the time to look for pics when i have so many more films to watch and review and well as games to play and review.

“Man of Steel 2” Title Revealed.


That’s right, Warner Bros has finally revealed the name for 2013’s “Man of Steel” squeal. the new movie will be named ” Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice”. As many have thought since cast rumors began to leak, this second entry was looking less like a “Man of Steel” sequel and more like “Justice League” prequel. If anything, the “Dawn of Justice” subheading seems to confirm that. What do you think? Are you excited for this movie? Do you think it’s trying to do too much? Do you think DC should have stole Marvels movie making plan and went in a direction that has been proven to work? Leave a comment and let me know.