What Bothered Me Most About “Man Of Steel”

Man of Steel teaser posterThere’s been something about “Man Of Steel” that hasn’t quite sat right with me (beyond the way that killing seems for him seems to come dangerously close to a first-response tactic).

Though I don’t have a problem with the idea that he killed, in and of itself – he has done so in the comics, after all – more so than the timing.  It feels too early in the cycle for such an event.  Zach Snyder has said that there will be two or three other films.  Either film would have been a better choice to have such a thing happen, because it could have already been established that he has an antipathy toward killing.

But on the first reboot?  Seems a bit sudden.

Something that, pardon the pun, flew under that radar that I think is potentially more significant is that way that his presence, in and of itself, elicits no surprise from anyone he encounters, as if virtually invulnerable flying people are common.

No matter what your opinion of the “Superman: The Motion Picture” and “Superman 2,” both films evoked a sense of wonder that what we were seeing was somehow beyond the ordinary.

This is despite there being no precedent for a being with his abilities in “Man Of Steel.” There are no other super-powered beings – Batman doesn’t (technically) exist since Nolan’s films were self-contained, though Bruce Wayne does; I am not sure what’s the case with Green Lantern – so wouldn’t people just be a bit amazed by his presence (in ways other than the heavy-handed allusions to the Christ mythos that permeate the film).

I could accept jaded behavior in the case of people that occupy the Marvel Cinematic Universe because they exist within a world where super-powered beings, while not common, are also not out of the ordinary, and readily acknowledged.

The best Superman films, “Superman: The Motion Picture” and “Superman II” existed in a world where such beings weren’t taken for granted – if only because there were no others.  This leant them a magical quality, because they were something beyond the everyday world.

This feeling of wonderment made the characters appear special, and worthy of emulation (in a moral sense).

Which not to disparage the performance of Henry Cavil, the latest Superman.  He acquits himself well, though because “Man Of Steel” seems so intent upon upon removing everything that made Superman admirable, it seemed to have overstepped (unfortunately), rendering him unremarkable.

And that’s a tragedy.

2 thoughts on “What Bothered Me Most About “Man Of Steel”

  1. Hey There Bmn,
    Thanks for that, It’s not like they can improve upon Superman The Movie with Christopher Reeves and Margot Kidder and Gene Hackman. From what I’ve seen of the trailers and remarks I’ve heard by insiders, Man of Steel doesn’t look good.

    1. It’s not that “Man Of Steel” isn’t entertaining, it’s just that it’s not Superman – at least the one many of us have spent many years admiring.

      Most of all, “Man Of Steel” is a Spectacle Delivery System (SDS), designed to put all sorts of stuff up on the screen, with as little heart and concern as possible for what they’re actually doing.

      What proof of this? Check out the remarkably pointless death of Pa Kent.

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