"Man of Steel" stars Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, and Russell Crowe. Released on June 14, 2013, the film explores the origins of Superman as he tries to adapt his life in Metropolis and protect his people from General Zod's wrath.
The film is directed by Zack Snyder, who also directed films such as 300 and Sucker Punch. It is the first installment in the DC Extended Universe. After reviewing the recent installments in the DCEU on my blog, I just realized that I didn’t review the one that started it all for my website. So I decided to spend the night rewatching and “re-reviewing” the recent Superman reboot before I see Justice League in the morning. When I first saw it in the theater back in 2013, I thought it was a very solid take on Superman’s origins. After a while, I started to realize why it received such a mixed response from critics and fans alike. But, for some reason, it only managed to change my opinion by a small margin. Will it change again during my recent review of the film? I highly doubt it, but it doesn’t hurt for me to find out.
Like I said, the film is a recent retelling of how Superman came to be from the destruction of his home world, Krypton, to him testing his powers. There are also some flashbacks with Kal (Clark Kent) as a young boy. I really enjoyed how this story connects to how people feel different about themselves like they don't belong with other people. Then they discover their special talents that could not only help people, but give them hope as well. It's like how I have a talent for movies and I share that talent with the rest of the world. It's really nice to see some superhero movies that have some realistic tones and themes that connect to real life. Cavill did a really good job portraying Clark, AKA Superman, as a person rather than just a regular superhero. Amy Adams was also solid as Lois Lane, a reporter for the Daily Planet. I was expecting someone else to play Lane, but I'm cool with that choice. Then there's Michael Shannon as Zod, the main antagonist of the film. There were a couple of moments where he gets a little over the top, but I thought he pulled it off all right. The rest of the cast did a nice job as well, such as Russell Crowe as Jor-El, Laurence Fishburne as Perry White, and Kevin Costner as Jonathan Kent (My mom loves Kevin Costner, so I had to take her to see it with me). The visuals and action sequences were just as astonishing and heart-pounding as I remembered it from my first viewing. The battle between Superman and Zod still reminded me of the Battle of Chicago sequence in Transformers: Dark of the Moon, but with lots of buildings getting destroyed. Hans Zimmer’s score respectively offers the type of epicness and emotion without overdoing one or the other.
One of the flaws I had with this film was that the pacing can be a little slow at times. There were also some parts that may upset long-time fans of Superman, such as the tone and the final showdown between Superman and Zod. The latter, which has the most controversial way of ending the battle, is best described as one of those types of debates where it’s almost impossible to win based on my assumption. Looking back at it now, I still didn’t mind the film’s tone because when I compared it to the tone in Batman V Superman, it’s not as gloomy or dark as some people make it out to be. It’s more along the lines of having a realistic tone in the Superman realm with a couple of attempts of humor thrown into the mix.
Overall, "Man of Steel" isn't a perfect superhero movie, but with its well-executed themes, some good performances, and its mind-blowing visuals, it is one of the most entertaining movies of 2013. Not to mention a solid beginning of the DC Extended Universe. It is also one of my underrated films of 2013 because people are so busy focusing on what they did wrong with Superman's character instead of focusing on the themes that the movie itself provided. I reviewed this movie as a mature critic and not as a Superman fan to make things easier for me. You might not agree with my opinions and I understand that, but that's how I view it.