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July 01, 2006

Superman Returned, Superbly

It's been years since I experienced the movie magic of the one of the beloved and iconic super heroes of all time. I did enjoy the latest installment of the Superman series, Superman Returns (I watched it on the opening day, last Thursday). Below are my thoughts and comments (and possible spoilers to some):

  • I know it's difficult to fill in the shoes of the late Christopher Reeves who made this movie character so famous that you couldn't forget to mention his name if you say Superman. That guy is really made for this role. He's the "poster boy" of Superman that couldn't be replaced easily by anyone else (think you could bear seeing Superman protrayed by Nicholas Cage?). But that guy is gone; in came Brandon Routh who fairly did justice to the role of Superman that legendary Reeves left behind. I did miss though the more bumbling type of portrayal of Clark Kent that Reeves did. Superman 1 to 4's Clark Kent has more of the comedic relief, this time around you get a milder dose of the same character but done differently by a newcomer. But you couldn't deny the eerie semblance of Routh with the facial features of Reeves.

  • Lois Lane was protrayed this time by Kate Bosworth. While doing the rounds in the film, as someone commented, her Lane character seemed to deviated from the feisty yet soft characterization done originally by Margot Kidder. Though I guess, the script suggests that Lane has to change personally (smoking after being stressed out; emotional anger at the mention of Superman) after years of waiting for a loved one that never did say goodbye properly.

  • I couldn't say much about Kevin Spacey's killer protrayal of Lex Luthor; I guess he made it a totally different persona unlike Gene Hackman did in the Superman 1. But I bow down to this Oscar-winning guy everytime he acts up as if "he is" the character he protrays.

  • I wish the movie had more fight scenes or added other dangerous scenarios that showcase more of the skills and capabilities of Superman, especially since this is a comeback movie; for most of the kids in this generation it will be their first time to be exposed to this great superhero so I guess this is enough reason to add more heroic action scenes. But I'm not the director nor script writer of the film. As they say, the more you add, the more you'll spoil the soup.

  • How ironic and puzzling to see Superman succumb to the punches of Lex Luthor and his henchman in the crystal arena were kryptonite were infused in the environment, while during the time Superman was carrying the crystal rock continent large chunks of kryptonite were slowly protruding out towards him, yet he did not budge nor felt weak while carryng the heavy weight. Again, I am not the script writer. So just enjoy the film and forget logic and comprehension.

  • I like the small "legacy" twist infused in the story by having Superman fathered a son with Lois Lane. What will be the powers of this boy? Will he be totally like his dad? We'll see in the next films to come.

  • Now which is better? Last year's Batman Begins or this year's Superman Returns? I believe you couldn't compare both in terms of their story lines since the former is literally going back to the roots of the hero while the latter tries to connect an unfinished series with another through new adventures. But for me, a story that has an origin (who and how he got the powers) makes a complete story that doesn't confuse the moviegoers especially those who would encounter for the first time a comic book character. So Batman Begins is one notch higher than Superman Returns.

'Nuff said. Enjoy the movie.

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