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The Man of Steel

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So I finally watched the new Superman movie, Man of Steel, last night. It was an okay, movie, I guess, nothing really spectacular.

While I was watching I kept mentally comparing it to the original movie from 1978. I have never read the comics so I have no other point of reference. The differences between the stories didn’t bother me much. They obviously had to make it a little bit different otherwise there wasn’t much point in making the movie. That being said, however, there were some things in this movie that just didn’t make sense to me.

*If you have not seen the movie and do not want spoilers, please discontinue reading at this point.

First, Superman’s dad, Jor-El, is a scientist. He knows Krypton‘s planetary core is destabilizing and will break apart very soon. That’s great, except, what need does a scientist have for that fancy armor he has? And why does a scientist know how to fight so lethally? And that creature he was flying on reminded me too much of Avatar.

In the closing moments of the movie, there is a flashback scene to a time when Clark was a child. His father is working under the hood of a pick up truck, but stops when he sees young Clark running around with his puppy, a red cape flowing behind him. Now, I wore capes when I was a child. I was one of those kids who would tie my towel around my neck after a shower and pretend it was a cape. That was because of Superman. When Clark is a child Superman doesn’t exist. Who is he emulating? Where did he get this idea?

The climax of this movie, as most superhero movies tend to do, takes place in New York City. It is never referred to as New York CIty in the movie (I think), but it’s New York. During the grandiose battle between Superman and Zod, multiple skyscrapers are knocked to the ground. I realize that this is just a movie. I also realize that beings of supernatural might would wreak this type of destruction were they to battle in a metropolitan sprawl such as New York City. It just struck me as a tad insensitive to have New York City skyscrapers tumbling to the ground so relatively soon after 9/11.

The last thing which perplexed me was the final scene, when Clark is hired on at the Daily PlanetBut Twindaddy, don’t you know anything about Superman? Clark works for the Daily Planet, you tool! Yes, reader, you are undeniably correct, but hear me out. In this movie, Clark spends his years after school as a drifter. He holds a multitude of jobs under an assortment of false identities. If he goes to college at all it is not mentioned nor shown in this movie. So on what merits does the Daily Planet hire him? Why on Earth would a respectable news organization hire a 33-year old man with only a high school education and no work history?

Some of you may be nodding your head along while reading my points. Others of you will be shaking your head and thinking I’m over-analyzing the movie. Either reaction is fine with me. These are just the thoughts I was left with after watching the movie. Overall, I did enjoy the movie. The acting was decent enough and the action was plentiful. There was also some humor sprinkled in, which was refreshing. The CGI could have been a little better, but it was believable enough.

I think the movie is worth a watch, if nothing else. I think I still prefer the original 2 movies, but that may be just because I grew up loving them.

Nano Poblano
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Sometimes funny. Sometimes serious. Always genuine.

Discussion

65 thoughts on “The Man of Steel

  1. I didn’t like the movie. After “The Dark Knight” series, and all the hero movies coming out now: “Thor”, “Iron Man”, “The Avengers”, etc…I was let down by the movie. I was hoping it would be done better…but I like Batman more as a hero anyways. =)

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    Posted by sayanything13 | November 21, 2013, 9:17 am
    • Well, I always thought Superman is tough to pull of because he’s damn-near invincible. You have to get kryptonite near him or, evidently, get him to breath the atmosphere of Krypton to even make him vulnerable. During the battle between Zod and Superman at the end I was waiting for one or the other to realize that they can’t hurt each other. Oh, well…

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      Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 9:20 am
  2. Interesting. Still on the fence if I want to see it.

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    Posted by 1jaded1 | November 21, 2013, 9:34 am
  3. He’s losing his footing. : )

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    Posted by Pocahontas | November 21, 2013, 9:35 am
  4. I think my boyfriend read the comics and everything else, but he told me his major problem with Man of Steel was that Superman kills someone. He loves the Christopher Reeve version.

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    Posted by Katie | November 21, 2013, 10:03 am
    • He did end up killing Zod, but did so reluctantly. Zod was about to slaughter some humans and that was the only way he could stop him.

      He was visibly upset after killing Zod, but it is completely out of character for him.

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      Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 10:05 am
  5. There is no yogurt, only Zuul. Whoopsie, wrong movie.

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    Posted by merbear74 | November 21, 2013, 10:08 am
  6. I thought they said the city was actually Metropolis?

    There were a lot of problems with this one. The biggest may have been that the scale was just too big. There was so much destruction that it didn’t seem real. In the 1978 version, when things got destroyed, it felt like it was actually happening to people.

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    Posted by The Cutter | November 21, 2013, 10:41 am
  7. I really enjoyed this movie. I’ve read some stuff about it, so let’s see if this helps. Jor-El isn’t just a scientist, he’s also an inventor/designer. He designed the ships UN the film…perhaps he designed the armour as well. As far as his fighting skills, I don’t know, but I liked seeing him as a badass.
    Clark wearing the cape. That’s some think that Kryptonian people do, so maybe it’s ingrained in him to do so.
    I always assumed it was Metropolis, since it’s set in the DC universe. There’s also a connection to Gothom, with Wayne Enterprises shown at least once.
    He did just save the world, so I’m guessing the government helped him pad his resume a bit.
    The fact that he killed Zod isn’t unusual. We think of superman not killing because of the previous movies. He actually has been known to kill in the comics.
    Well, that’s what I think about all of it at least.

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    Posted by Brother Jon | November 21, 2013, 10:45 am
    • Thanks, BroJo. I didn’t hear them mention the name of the city, and it probably is Metropolis, but it looked like New York to me and that was my reaction to it.

      Perhaps wearing a cape is a Kyrptonian thing, but he didn’t know at that age that he was from Krypton.

      As to Jor-El, the fight scene was certainly bad ass, I just find it hard to believe a scientist and/or inventor (especially since on Krypton you are born and bred for a singular purpose) knows how to kick ass like that.

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      Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 10:59 am
  8. “I was one of those kids who would tie my towel around my neck after a shower and pretend it was a cape. That was because of Superman. When Clark is a child Superman doesn’t exist. Who is he emulating? Where did he get this idea?”

    Pretty amazing how they don’t think of this stuff when making the movie, right? I’m not sure I buy the “instinct” thing. We saw this movie at the drive-in. I have to admit I didn’t like it that much, although I liked the eeriness of the taking over of the TV and some other suspenseful parts. However, toward the end I was like OKAY, I get it, things look cool in movies now. WE ALL GET IT SO YOU CAN STOP NOW.

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    Posted by La La | November 21, 2013, 11:02 am
    • Yes, the fight and destruction at the end was extremely gratuitous. Very unnecessary. I kept waiting for Superman to realize that the longer the fight endured the more people were getting hurt and to leave the damned city.

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      Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 11:05 am
  9. Would you watch it again?

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    Posted by behindthemaskofabuse | November 21, 2013, 11:31 am
  10. He got a job at the paper because he is a handsome man. Isn’t that how it always works? I need his cover letter writing skills is my conclusion. Either that, or I need to be a handsome man.

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    Posted by Marie | November 21, 2013, 12:16 pm
  11. Clark Kent slips into a nearby windmill and comes out wearing rusty armor… riding on a donkey… Man of LeMancha of Steel…

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    Posted by pouringmyartout | November 21, 2013, 12:49 pm
  12. 1) Spock knows how to fight lethally… why shouldn’t other awesome scientisty type people have that knowledge as well?
    2) The flashback scene is weird. I loved it. But, you are right, who is mimicking? Perhaps he isn’t playing at being anybody, perhaps it was an original thought…
    3) It’s Metropolis, not NYC. It’s a make believe world. Still, I understand your point. I can imagine watching the final 30 minutes could be very hard for a lot of people. I was too engrossed in, actually on the edge of my seat leaning forward, to make that connection when I saw it. But, in conversations with friends afterwards, I do see how powerful those images are, how painful. And there definitely could have been better ways to do that whole fight scene.
    4) Because I was a fan of Smallville, I was going off the assumption that the wandering Clark in the movie had gone to college. Or, perhaps Louis got him the job. Or, maybe he wrote something that was so good they would have been fools not to hire him. Or… yeah, this part didn’t bother me, because Clark Kent is supposed to work at the Daily Planet.

    I really enjoyed this movie. I think part of that, though, was I so desperately wanted it to be good after the train wreck of Superman Returns, that I refused to see any flaws in it. Well, I refused to see any flaws that would have kept me from enjoying it.

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    Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 1:31 pm
    • I didn’t dislike that movie, these are just things I don’t think were thought through very well. And Spock had Federation training. I’m sure Jor-El did not since Kryptonian society marked you for a single purpose (and ONLY that purpose).

      Perhaps Clark did go to college, that still doesn’t explain his nonexistent work history. You know companies will not hire people these days with a huge gap in their work history.

      Again, I enjoyed the movie, just think certain aspects weren’t completely thought through.

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      Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 1:52 pm
      • I’m not disagreeing with you. There are definitely parts of the movie that could have been thought through better.

        Obviously, there are ways to get around the “single purpose,” there are ways to do things they aren’t supposed to be doing, since they had Kal-El naturally without anyone finding out. (Though, while watching the opening sequences I was curious that no one had noticed that Lara was getting larger while she was pregnant, was she hidden away for the whole gestation period?)

        Work history? For a newspaper? Are you kidding? They are a dieing industry, they’ll hire anybody who applies these days. :-P

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        Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:00 pm
        • I find that hard to believe with so many people trying to make a living through writing.

          And she had to have been hidden for the good portion of her pregnancy….

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          Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:02 pm
          • I was completely joking about the newspaper thing. If anything, you are right, it is probably harder and harder to get a job with them. Fewer papers still turning a profit along with shrinking page counts, means less writing spots, less editing spots, less layout spots, etc… means more competition.

            As I said, I was just so excited to have a decent Superman movie to watch, I know I didn’t judge it as harshly as I might have otherwise. I’ve only watched it that one time, and I’m hoping Santa brings me a copy for Christmas so I can watch it a couple more times before I really form an opinion on it one way or the other.

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:10 pm
          • Well, it’s definitely better than Superman Returns. Kevin Spacey ruined that movie as far as I’m concerned.

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            Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:12 pm
          • Kevin Spacey wasn’t that bad…
            Parker Posey was a disaster.
            The writing was atrocious. The premise was weak, at best.
            When I watch the movie now, I watch up to the point where Lois faints and slides down the emergency exit chute of the plane, and then I turn the movie off.

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:18 pm
          • Really? You don’t think making an entire continent from Kryptonite is a horrible idea? I don’t know you any more…

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            Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:19 pm
          • He did an okay acting job… what the writing did for his character was horrible, yes.

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:24 pm
          • Well, I don’t really care for Spacey to begin with…

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            Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:24 pm
          • Usual Suspects? K-Pax? American Beauty?

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:30 pm
          • No. No. And no. Actually, the only movie I’ve seen him in that I really care for is The Ref.

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            Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:33 pm
          • Wow. I mean, I threw in K-Pax as joke, but … Wait, are you saying you didn’t like Usual Suspects and American Beauty, or you just didn’t like him in those movies?

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:35 pm
          • I haven’t seen them. I just don’t really like him so I didn’t watch them.

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            Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:36 pm
          • Congratulations, I’m speechless.

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:43 pm
          • Wooooooooot! Gimme a chance, I’m sure I can do it again.

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            Posted by Twindaddy | November 21, 2013, 2:46 pm
          • I’m not sure I want to. Being speechless hurts my brain.

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            Posted by djmatticus | November 21, 2013, 2:48 pm
  13. OMG I loved that movie. It was awesome on the big screen in 3d extreme. Way to ruin it for me Mr Continuity Expert! I don’t care if it doesn’t make sense. There’s a dude from outer space who can fly. It doesn’t have to make sense.

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    Posted by stephrogers | November 21, 2013, 3:38 pm
  14. I kinda love superheroes, and my favourite is Batman. And I think that’s because he’s human. I mean so is Spiderman, but Spiderman was bitten by a fancy spider you know?! ;) anyway, I watched ‘Man of Steel’ for the first time a few weeks ago and I must admit that I enjoyed it. I didn’t analyse it as in-depth as you did, but overall I did enjoy it :) But now that you’ve made those pointers above, I do tend to agree :) But the Chris Nolan Batman trilogy is still my most favourite superhero movie franchise ever; The Amazing Spiderman I think outdoes the 3 Spiderman movies with Tobey Maguire, and I definitely prefer Man of Steel over Superman Returns. I’m enjoying how these superhero movies are darker, edgier and also going back to how it all started.

    But that scene with the red cape at the end when Clark was a child? You just blew my mind…

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    Posted by wannabepoet | November 22, 2013, 7:04 am
  15. I’ve never been a huge Superman fan, something about him always irritated me though I can’t figure out just what. I’ll stick with Batman ;)

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    Posted by C.K. Hope | November 25, 2013, 9:53 am
    • I’m not a huge fan, but as i said in another comment, he’s hard to write for, I think, because he’s invincible. You know no matter what he’ll prevail. There’s no way to really add suspense to any stories he’s in.

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      Posted by Twindaddy | November 25, 2013, 9:56 am

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