You know something is wrong when I just can't say with absolute certainty that I liked this movie better than "Superman Returns".

"Superman Returns" arguably had a worse story but it did a better job at telling it. That's the main thing with this movie; I just never could get really into it, due to poor story handling. The pacing felt off and even though this is a 143 minutes long movie, it still felt rushed.

It just doesn't take the time for its story and characters to truly set itself up and develop into something interesting and engaging. It's as if every sequence is missing 1 or 2 scenes that would have helped the movie to develop its story, characters and emotions more effectively.

It felt like a very bland movie to me. I never felt any excitement, there was never any tension, it never moved me, it never surprised me with anything and it just failed to make an impact on me, in any shape or form. No, even entertainment-wise this movie falls kind of short, due to the way how it's constructed.

The movie starts off as a Star Wars type off science-fiction/action flick, it than starts to focus more on some its drama and after that it turns into a full blown, summer blockbuster, action-packed, popcorn flick. These different movie segments however don't blend together very well. The start on Krypton feels needlessly long (I mean, common! We all know Superman's origin story already) and overcomplicated, probably just to give Russell Crowe more screen time and stuff to do. The middle part doesn't work out that interestingly, due to it that it just doesn't seem able to do anything interesting with its characters and emotions and by the time the real big action starts to kick in, the movie has already worn you out, with its constantly fast pace, other 'minor' action and its (rushed) rapid story developments.

Guess they did try to give the Clark Kent character some more depth and personality and yes, I probably also like this Clark Kent better than any of the other Kent's from the past but once he turns into Superman, he's a far less interesting and fun character to watch, as weird as that may sound. The Clark in this movie feels more 'human' than any of his predecessors but the Superman character still remains a quite boring and bland one. The movie perhaps could have used some more humor at times but that simply wasn't the approach this movie was going for unfortunately. You could say it's taking itself a tad bit too serious, as is the current trend for modern superhero movies. This certainly goes at the expense of especially the movie its main character in this case.

Some people are at least going to like and appreciate this movie for its action. And yes, the second half of this movie offers plenty of that. Problem for me however was that it constantly seemed to be repeating itself and was relying too much on its special effects. I lost counts, the amount of times Superman or one of his fellow Kryptonians crashed into a building, during a fight scene. You should make a drinking game out of it! And there is just something terribly effective about watching a bunch of super human's, OK aliens in this case. having a go at each other. You know that every punch that gets thrown isn't going to sort any effect and all of the other stuff that is thrown and shot at them isn't neither.

Thing with movies that are heavy on its CGI also is that no matter how well they are made and awesome they look, back in your mind you always know you're watching something that isn't real and it feels like you're watching a very fancy video game, in which you yourself don't even get to do- or control anything or anyone. I'm not bashing this movie its special effects, since it's all fine looking but surely they could have held back a little during some of its sequences. The movie goes all out and just a tad bit over-the-top with its action and special effects toward the end, if you would ask me.

I know, I probably sound more negative than I should be. After all, I didn't hated the movie, not at all! It's just that there is so much wrong with it and so much potential had gone to waste. The movie as it is is a still watchable enough one but far from my favorite Superman telling. Kind of funny that the goofy, over-the-top, colorful looking- and significantly cheaper Superman movie from the '70's is still the best telling of the story till date!


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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