Title: Man of Steel
Country: USA, Canada, UK
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Director: Zack Snyder
David S. Goyer
My most anticipated summer blockbuster of 2013, from the mastermind of 300 (2006) and WATCHMEN (2009), the reboot of the most popular superhero has undergone a series of choppy fluctuations since the underperformance of Bryan Singer’s SUPERMAN RETURNS (2006), so an IMAX plus 3D version for me is a prerequisite to watch.
Not an avid fan of Snyder, but MAN OF STEEL is an up-to-par epic bandwagon superbly grafts the invincible Kryptonian alien under the context of a xenophobic earth milieu, a human environment-nurtured extraterrestrial identity chooses to combat against his own race to save the cynical earthlings.
The film majestically branches out a unique palette of indigo and gray, a post-apocalypse solemness which is unlike most of its superfluous comic-derived peers (producer Christopher Nolan’s sway may be a plausible influence), and a hefty impetus of Clark Kent’s poignant relation with his human parents perpetually spurs the film to imprint its most eloquent fingerprints onto the heart of its recipients, a far better fulfillment than the parents-bereaved spidey (both Costner and Lane are heartwarming and sagacious in it).
Crowe and Zurer as Superman’s biological parents, both are throwaway in the overture of Krypton’s demise, the former then resurrects himself as a bewildering wraith inside the flying vehicle, sabotages General Zod’s scheme. Against the ageism, Adams offers brilliant ballast as the mettlesome journalist Lois Lane, a paragon of the benevolence from human part, the mutual attraction between her and Kent is ignited, but markedly Snyder saves the best for the sequel. Antje Traue and Christopher Meloni, one is the ferocious sidekick of Zod, another is a human general fights till his self-sacrifice heroic act, brings out an intensive beast-and-prey pattern of diversion which is a rare treat for side players in mainstream cinema. Michael Shannon as General Zod, a bona-fide super-villain counteracts Superman’s almighty indestructibility, his human-eradication theory surpasses any comic fecklessness, and the gravity-reconstruction concept really put the entire planet hanging on a thread (I always redeem a sudden depletion of gravity is the way to our doomsday), Shannon is incredible to magnify his militant loyalty and the genocide-prone mercilessness whilst viewers would eventually be touched by the former, such a transcending feat to accomplish out of a fixated mold. Same can be stated to Henry Cavill’s Superman, he is a flawless messiah of our planet, and Cavill is the perfect Superman, both from his physique and his charisma (and finally the underwear goes underneath his uniform), his oscillation has never been shied away in the film, and it makes the final neck-breaking such an emotional disturbance both to him and to the viewers.
The CGI effects are another fusillade of leveling cities and blasting buildings after THE AVENGERS (2012), but an amazing stunt is this time it ad hoc showcases an uplifting process of Superman’s sway of his flying expertise. A recurrent blip of the genre is the willful negligence of the aftershock, 5 seconds later, everyone act like they are totally oblivious of the apocalyptic attack no matter how damaged the city is, the transference is unnaturally nettling, the least one can do is to take a few shots of people’s contemplation as survivors of such a catastrophe, or raise hope to shoot scenes of the restoration and a panorama of the mess is a must to deepen the seriousness of the matter.
Anyhow, MAN OF STEEL is a stylized orthodox superhero film which successfully recoups the fanboys and bolsters a stronghold for the series in its lucrative future projects, its mass appeal might lag behind Marvel’s SHIELDS coalition, but Superman’s adventure will be more audacious and reflective other than its entertaining face value.