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Superman Flies and Crashes: 3/5

Man of Steel | Henry Cavill stars as Superman in Man of Steel | Warner Bros.
Man of Steel | Henry Cavill stars as Superman in Man of Steel | Warner Bros.

Out of the hundreds of movies Hollywood is releasing this year, there was one that outshined the others with anticipation and guarantee. It was called Man of Steel, Superman’s frustrating and unfortunate return to the silver screen.

[movies name="Man of Steel" website="" score="3.0" trailer="" rating="pg" advisories="VIOLENCE;NOT RECOMMENDED FOR YOUNG CHILDREN" genre="Action/Super Hero" runningtime="143" opens="June 14, 2013"]

The movie begins on the planet Krypton, giving us state of the art special effects and elaborate costume designs, introducing the parents of our protagonist, Jor-El (Russell Crowe) and Lara Lor-Van (Ayelet Zurer), whose planet is facing doom due to its artificial environmental practices. In order to save their newborn child Kal-El and preserve their Kryptonian race, Jor-El and Lara launch the child to safety, programming his landing on Earth.


As the picture moves forward, we learn about Kal and his struggle to find out who or what he is, being brought up by simple folk farmers Jonathon (Kevin Costner) and Martha Kent (Diane Lane), who give him the name Clark. We see Clark go through traumatizing experiences as a child, fighting with the relentless power of his mind. As an adult, he continues his journey to discover his identity, taking up different jobs under fake names. Travelling as a drifter. Eventually, he encounters a Kryptonian-like spacecraft within the arctic where he discovers his existence by conversing with the preserved consciousness of his father, Jor-El, in hologram form. Unknown to Clark, from programming the aircraft, he unleashes a deadly force, General Zod (Michael Shannon), an individual from his race who leads an army to Earth in order to collect Clark, threatening to destroy earth if his request is not met.

Henry Cavill stars as Superman in Man of Steel Henry Cavill stars as Superman in Man of Steel

Henry Cavill stars as Superman in Man of Steel

From a film that was meant to outline humanity and the meaning of good will with a proper balance between story and effects, we were given the opposite. Man of Steel relies on its visuals to arouse its audience rather than giving them the film they anticipated. The plot is the definition of convoluted by too many instances where the viewer needs to stop and realize what they witnessed didn’t make any sense. While watching the film, I noticed it was striving to top last year's The Avengers, (which had the same problem as Iron Man 3).  Man of Steel should not have been that kind of film; the absence of depth and morality makes us question what its developers were going for.

Most of the hype came from its developers Warner Brothers that chose the two most successful filmmakers in their genre of comic book films to collaborate on Man of Steel, with Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight Trilogy) producing and Zack Snyder (Watchmen & 300) in the director’s chair. It’s a shame that such a promising collaboration could go so wrong.

The films flaws come from the questionable plot, cheesy writing from writer David S. Goyer, and overused special effects, which honestly took away from the film rather than making it larger than life. However, the picture had excellent performances from Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner and Henry Cavill in the lead role.

Being a fan of the Superman comics and the movies that follow them, I was disappointed.  From what was supposed to be a deep and mythological tale of self-discovery and life, we got another generic action movie filled with a lot of explosions and questions, and not a lot of inspiration.

Sorry, but this collaboration did not surpass 1978.