MAN OF STEEL: A REVIEW

Man of Steel – I have actually been scared of writing this review, can I do it justice? Will people hate it? Am I too fanboy? Too Snyder-in-love? I mean – how do you review a film for your favourite onscreen character of all time? Superman is my greatest onscreen hero and I have loved every single thing ever made about him. I even loved Superman Returns and was pissed Zack did not take Brandon Routh back for this when I first read of the casting of Henry Cavill. So last night I was all nerves, it was superb and amazing of Roadshow to make one of my childhood dreams come true and to invite me to the Australian Premiere of the film. I took along Salty Kernel, Claire Smith and if you follow me on Twitter or FB or Instagram you may have seen a few hundred updates at my sheer giddiness of joy at the whole affair.

 

Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill
Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill

 

Firstly, the premiere itself was a HUGE affair, the entire complex closed and transformed for a media circus, a big black carpet and a narrow walkway entry surrounded by hundreds of people from the planet Fanatic of Geekdom, with Claire and myself stuck and having to do a carpet entry. I LOATHE the carpet walk ins – I hate people looking at me and think they are all staring at me going “who the fuck is that loser” – oh well, suckers I was invited and am way more geeky than you will ever be 🙂 The let down for the premiere was that the carpet was opening at 615pm, Claire and I entered at 555pm so we could get a good seat, we then sat there to about 720pm before the film started and the carpet walk was televised into the cinema and dragged on and on and on by a really bad host who kept cutting to trailers of the actual film – this is honestly one of the dumbest things anyone could ever have thought of doing on the night – most people there were die hard fans that were bursting like a 15yr olds’ pimples to see this film and the majority of the people present had specifically avoided all trailers so they could see the film untainted – and then this carpet presentation played a different trailer of the film we were about to see every five minutes for close on an hour – there was one man, who looked a lot like Lex Luthor who was literally screaming he was so distraught. I was also upset that, I was part of the invited and we got literally 2mins of Russ, Zac and Supe introducing the film to us, if I was a non invited geek who stood on the red carpet I could have met them, had a poster signed and dry humped the Man’s leg like a freaking Toto on heat. I am totally grateful and mind blown by the experience but next time I want to be royalty and meet them – met Zack before – he was actually my very first interview – I nearly had seizures I was so nervous interviewing him for The Watchmen. But I have digressed too long – some may say I have babbled 🙂

 

Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe
Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe

The sound for this film was enough to make most deaf, for me, it gave me cinematic woodie, the opening 20mins of this film, on Krypton, was so exciting and overwhelming I nearly cried, all my viewings of the original films with Christopher Reeves, all seen in exactly the same cinema complex with my mum about a hundred years ago came flooding back, the smells, the excitement and joy and wonder of being an 8yr old kid again washed over me right there until I told myself to breathe again. In 5mins I knew what Zack had done, like Nolan to the Batman franchise and JJ to the Star Trek franchise he took everything we ever knew about Superman and shot it up with a cocktail of crack and roids and presented what he thought the story could be. I loved nearly everything about this film.

 

Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Dylan Sprayberry
Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Dylan Sprayberry

 

The film is more Star Trek than Batman in the fact it is more alternate universe Superman than anything else. It literally has minor changes to everything you know and love. If you are a Superman comic purist then you may papercut slash your wrists at this film just like the WWZ purists are doing in the next cinema. But this didn’t bother me, in fact I welcomed it with open arms. You hear “they are rebooting Superman again” and you think “are you fucking kidding me” – we know what is going to happen, we know when and how Jonathan Kent is going to die, we know all about the fortress, we know about his powers and how he gets them and we know all about Lois, Jimmy and Perry White, we even know Superman’s weakness, and how at the end, even this weakness he will overcome, because, well it is the climax, so suck it up princess in blue tights.  So take all of that, drop acid and watch it again and then you may end up watching Man of Steel, I bow to thee Zack Snyder.

But, the negatives of the film that I have to get out of the way.

1) How Superman finds his “parents” and finds out information about himself is so poorly executed and brushed over I was very disappointed, it was too quick, unrealistic, and looked as though scenes were cut from making this part more authentic so there could be more action

2) Martha Kent – I LOVE DIANE LANE – but I could not buy her as someone playing older than she is

3) It needed more story, there is good story when it is there but it has so much action in the film, I mean non stop freaking you-may-want-to-make-love to the screen kind of action that takes the action in Batman and makes it look like a Hello Kitty movie

SPOILERS FOR #4:

4) No Jimmy, that Superman song or Kryptonite – I mean what????

 

Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon
Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon

 

But there is so much amazement, the film is near perfectly cast, my only dislikes in the casting were, as mentioned, Diane Lane, I also loved Amy Adams but think her character needed more work, she was too ballzy in this one, and her scenes move so quick you hardly get time to appreciate her, but that central core of Lois is there. While I was disappointed not to have Routh back, he just looked so incredibly hot in the lycra, I was blown away by the depth and skill of Cavill as the caped one. He is the first serious Superman in the first very serious and incredibly dark Superman film. There is no klutziness of silly Lex and minimal to no humour and I loved it so much more for that, it gave it depth and true heart to what is essentially, a heartbreaking tale of an orphan who is alone in the universe, excluding the six people that have come to destroy him and everything he loves, it hit me when I realised this, Doctor Who is a retelling of Superman in a weird, English, steampunk kind of way but at their cores’ they suffer the same emotional turmoil. Cavill brilliant, Costner amazing as the earthly father figure and I love this storyline so much of father and son, this time even more, I think Snyder perfected the Supe and Earth dad story, it made my heart break and I never was drawn to this part of the story as much as this, never before was the young Superman so distraught at his life and battling more than human teenage demons, this was epic what he went through, and have to say, get ready for some more Dylan Sprayberry (young Superman) – the kid was great and had minimal but powerful scenes. Another standout for me was Antje Traue as Faora-Ul, evil bitch but so hot you actually wouldn’t mind her killing you :). And I better mention one dude who nearly steals the show, is a master of everything that he touches and has such an incredible presence onscreen it is a shame he is the bad dude. Michael Shannon is, as always, just perfect. Nothing more to be said.

 

Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon, Amy Adams
Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon, Amy Adams

 

Snyder does it different in this one, and on every level, the entire story is altered, the entire universe is a bit different and even the way the story is told is different. Until the shit hits the fan nothing is really told in chronological order, and I loved this, it is all kind of pieced together, much the same way that Lois tracks him down. Bit by bit the story is unveiled, and not laid out on a platter for you, you have to wait to get more 🙂 And you will want more, once the hardcore action starts, try and get comfortable, because, he ain’t called Superman for nothing, and the shit is coming from an elephant and the fan is a freaking electrical turbine and if you have a Metropolis in this film, the entire thing can easily be rebuilt for the next film. No building is spared in this battle to the death, it kind of hit me through the battle scenes, how the hell do they kill each other?

 

Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon
Man of Steel Review on Salty, Zack Snyder, Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon

 

I could just keep talking and talking about this film, for me, it was brilliant, I will be seeing it again, the 3D is sensational and do not even bother watching it in 2D, you will be mad to waste this extra dimension. I cannot wait for a sequel that will no doubt take years to make, I long for it now. Welcome back Superman, and welcome to being household names Snyder and Cavill.

 

SALTY’S POP SCORE:

4 and a Half Pops

 

KERNEL DARA’S POP SCORE:

2 Pops

 

KERNEL BEN’S POP SCORE:

3 and a Half Pops

 

KERNEL ANDREW’S POP SCORE:

3 Pops

 

For the trailer, I have already posted it, so clickety click HERE if you want to see it again.

 

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