Superman Returns

Posted: November 12, 2010 in Films
Tags: ,

Starring: Brandon Routh, Kevin Spacey, Kate Bosworth

Director: Bryan Singer

Year: 2006


I had high hopes for this film once I heard that Bryan Singer, the man behind the critically acclaimed X-men movies was behind it.  He told us, the eagarly awaiting fans that he had read Superman comics as a boy and couldn’t wait to lay his mark on the Superman franchise.  Superman fans were wetting their knickers with excitement as forums exploded with anticipation as to what the new Superman movie would be like.  Would it include Doomsday?  Lex Luthor?  Will other DC heroes be making an appearance?  What about the new suit?  Every fan known to man was excited.  Then came release day.

‘Superman flops at the box office’ was a number of headlines I was reading upon its UK release.  I didn’t go to watch it on release day, I went a few days later and there were only about four people in the whole theatre.  I was disappointed just by seeing the lack-lustre turnout.  I sat in my seat, popcorn in hand.  I will admit to getting very emotional once I heard THAT Superman music erupt and the classic ‘swooping’ of the credits going through Space at the start of the movie.  Christopher Reeve immediately entered my mind, and I started to realise just how much I adore Superman.  He was back.  Then the movie started.

The movie is a closure to the Christopher Reeve films, with Superman 3 and 4 being totally ignored thus Superman Returns following on from Superman 2.  Clark had been on his travels to see if there were any remains left from his planet Krypton, and after finding none, he comes literally crashing back down to Earth.  In his mum’s garden, actually.  So then he goes back to the Daily Planet, gets his old job back, notices Lois now has a boyfriend and a child bla bla.  It is more like a soppy teen soap opera than a Superhero movie.  Just get to the action already!  The highlight of this film for me was Kevin Spacey who plays Lex Luthor, as his incredible acting was on display throughout – but just not enough.  His character was wasted and the storyline was timid.  Lex Luthor knows Superman is back and also knows his weakness, so he goes off to kill him.  Oh.  Is that it?  So…no Doomsday or Brainiac or anything then?  Just…Lex Luthor.  Again.  Great.  There are so many good bad guys out there in Superman’s world, at least one of them should be used in this modern-day Superman era.  Making Superman modern though was something Bryan Singer failed to do.  The whole thing just felt old-fashioned, and the new rubber suit looked disgusting, like a used condom.  There was no real action, the only stand out bit for me was when Superman caught the falling aeroplane.  That was pretty cool.

So what about Brandon Routh?  How was he as the man of steel?  Erm…not great.  He tried too hard to portray the same humour Christopher Reeve once gave to Clark Kent and I have to admit that I cringed at times.  But let’s be fair, the downfall of this movie was not Brandon’s fault.  It was Singer’s.  If the story had been better, if there had been more action, if they had included at least one cool bad guy in the whole ridiculously, long boring movie, we might have actually had been onto something here.

Don’t worry.  A new Superman film is due out in 2012 – it’s actually sounding good.  It’s not got Singer’s dirty hands on it either.  Bonus!


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