Top 5 things i liked about Man of Steel

mos_glyph_hires

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. I did like the costume in Man of steel but i wished the red was a little brighter. The colors seemed far too dark for a hero meant to inspire hope. The silver embellishments on the suit also felt unnecessary and looked rather dull. Ideally i think they should shoot for something along the lines of the new 52 suit currently in the comics. You don’t need the collar but there are places where red could be utilized to shake things up a little like the belt. They could even incorporate some of the subtle armor pieces from the comics in to it make it appear more Kryptonian.

2. Smallville was damn near perfect looking. There have been many iterations of Superman’s hometown over the years but many felt either too big or too small. This Smallville is just right in my opinion. The Kent farm itself also falls in here.

3. Baby Kal-El’s ship is great looking it obviously fits the aesthetic of the other Kryptonian ships we see while still having a distinction to it that feels like it’s one of a kind. As much as i liked the original Superman films i always thought the weird crystalline ship just didn’t make sense from a practical perspective, even if it’s an object of pure science fiction. Here the ship seems both practical yet easily reconciles as alien in appearance.

4. Russell Crowe as Jor-El easily stole the film in his sheer presence. While i didn’t like everything that occurred on-screen with his character he invoked the role entirely. He gave many facets to the character that were sorely missing from Marlon Brando’s iteration most obviously emotion. His Jor-El felt far more like a hero at the start of the film than just a simple supporting character. Crowe brought gravitas to the role that i doubt anyone else could top.

5. Clark destroying the belligerent truckers semi was pretty great. It immediately brought back memories of Superman 2 where after regaining his powers Clark basically beats the crap out of a similar character at a diner. I didn’t actually like the fact that he physically assaulted a guy for petty reasons in Superman 2 mind you it felt supremely out of character. What i liked here was that Clark basically took a high road in not simply destroying this guy in front of everyone. Yes he gives in to a petty urge and demolishes his truck but that shows how human Clark actually feels just like everyone else.

Advertisements

My personal top 10 issues with Man of Steel

mos_glyph_hires

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Zod was born and bred to be a soldier. He was in his own words trained his entire life and yet Jor-EL is able to best him in hand to hand combat. Jor-EL is a scientist…
  2. Zod and his army of rebels are sentenced to the phantom zone but are first placed in weird space coffins that freeze them. Then they are launched into an awaiting spaceship which then finally launches itself into the phantom zone. These are vicious criminals that staged a bloody coup why not just launch them directly into the zone? It’s clear the council has no intention of ever releasing them this is basically a death sentence and they go about it in such away that makes no sense.

  3. Clark’s powers seem to develop slowly over time as he grows up on earth. It takes him time and effort to learn to control them. Zod is able to master his powers in the last 30-5 minutes of the film with seemingly little effort. Even though he was wearing a suit designed to block out earth’s atmosphere and probably other environmental factors like say radiation.

  4. The atmosphere on Zod’s ship disrupts Superman’s powers. Powers he developed after years of being saturated in the radiation of our sun. Lets think about that for a moment… The atmosphere counteracts radiation that Superman had already absorbed and yet when the atmosphere is set to mimic earth’s his powers suddenly return. They are in space by the way.

  5. Amy Adams is a terrible Lois Lane and Henry Cavill isn’t much of a Superman either. They have no chemistry together at any scene in the movie. Cavill wears a single expression throughout the film a kind of indifferent scowl. You can count the number of times he smiles on one hand. Amy Adams as Lois has no edge to her character there is no way you can believe she is a pulitzer prize winning writer from the way she acts.

  6. It takes almost no time for lois to track down Clark’s hometown and earth mother after an extremely short montage. It’s clear from this that several people already know that clark has abilities. It also shows that at least one has no issue telling people about them. We know that Lana Lang, Pete Ross and Pete’s own mother are aware of Clark. Pete provides Lois with the Kent farm Address. Later the Kent farm is destroyed by Zod and his soldiers then a battle takes place in Smallville. Clearly there is a reason they are so interested in Kansas. Superman later tells a General that he grew up in Kansas. It seems like just about anyone could put the pieces together.

  7. Krypton has spaceships and an abandoned interplanetary colonization project but no one flees the planet as it’s destruction begins.

  8. Jonathan Kent is entirely out of character. Instead of molding Clark in to the man who will save the world he keeps enforcing the idea that humanity will simply reject him once he makes himself known. Even as he is about to die he makes clark not intervene or reveal himself.

  9. Kryptonians are born in matrix style incubators and all come from a magic burned skull fragment which is later somehow ingrained into Kal-El’s cells. The unborn of Krypton are being stored in his cells. I can’t even begin to state everything that’s wrong with that. Consider this though if Kryptonians are anything like humans as they grow and age their cells are constantly being replaced with new ones. Which would mean that none of the proto Krypton babies are in his cells anymore.

  10. Superman doesn’t kill EVER for any reason. This is one of the backbones of the character. The comics, animated movies and cartoons even the previous films that show Superman will do anything to ensure he doesn’t kill someone. By forcing him to kill you are basically taking away from Superman’s greatest belief that there is always hope. In fact there are plenty of stories where Superman crosses the line and things end up taking a turn for the worst. Take the recent Injustice video game or go back to the Justice League cartoon show in the episodes featuring the Justice Lords. Once Superman crosses the no kill line he is no longer Superman.

Review: Superman versus the Elite

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Most superhero cartoons are rather straightforward rarely do they branch in to the philosophy of what really drives the characters. Superman versus the Elite is a rare gem in the catalog of DC animated films. It breaks down the image of Superman. What most people view him as simply the symbol of ultimate good sometimes synonymous with it. This movie brings to the surface what truly motivates him to be that symbol to choose what is right over what is easy.

The animation in the movie is far from great and the character models seem far to simplistic. There is also a strange goofy undertone during action sequences where characters in the back drops seems to act far too cartoonish. These things would probably have doomed any other story than this one. The characterization and narrative are so tight that they make up for all the short comings. The Elite are a literal snake in the grass. While their leader Manchester Black is the groups mouth piece each member comes off unique in their own way. Black is easily the antithesis of the man of steel. He is boisterous, arrogant and manipulative while still coming off as a bit of an every man. There is a lot of death in this film not all of it drives the story forward but you can see that it drives Superman’s character. Rarely do we get a glimpse of why he feels the way he does about the world as we do here.  Superman is taking the hardest path of any hero really making sure that we don’t stoop to the level of those who would prey upon us. Delivering the message that we can be better if we try although the path is far from easy.

The movie has a phenomenal ending and as far as i can tell is also one of the most faithful animated adaptations of a DC comic arc yet. When i first read that this movie was being made i had a hard time wondering why. There was no film coming out and no toys to push. I figured most likely it was there to keep Superman alive in the minds of consumers for The Man of Steel which drops in to cinemas next year. Its easy to attribute it to that and nothing more but it feels like its something far more special. Superman was the inspiration for countless heroes in the comics to try to make the world a better place, its easy to see why from this. Superman stands for far more than truth, justice and the American way. Superman versus the Elite is here to remind us of that.

Final score 5 out of 5