Superman Week: Superman Returns


Superman Returns is a very polarizing film. You either love it or hate it, and when it came out in 2006 some people liked it and some didn't. While I wasn't a part of either side, I enjoyed it for what it was at the time. Has my opinion of this film changed over the last 7 years? Lets take a look.

Plot Summary: After 5 years in space, looking for the remains of planet Krypton, Superman returns to Earth. He misses Lois Lane, who lives with Richard White and has a son. Meanwhile, Lex Luthor plots an evil plan, using crystals he stole from the Fortress of Solitude, to create a new land and submerge the USA.


The film's plot is one of the most criticized that I have seen. Most people have an issue with it, specifically with Superman showing more emotion than ever before. To me that's what makes this story shine. One of the most often criticized things about Superman is that he is too powerful, in that he can't be hurt unless kryptonite is involved, and he also doesn't show human traits, like emotions that often.

The big overall plot with Lex Luthor returning and once again having some huge real estate scam going on is a little ridiculous. That is until you realize that Bryan Singer directed this film as if it were a sequel to Superman 2, and acted as though 3 and 4 never happened (as most fans wish they didn't). In the end its a very enjoyable story, which I had fun watching.

The acting in this film was great, and the casting made sense for the roles with the direction that Singer wanted to go in. Brandon Routh is often referred to as "the actor that destroyed Superman" but in my eyes its the complete opposite. He was great in the role in that he gave off the aura of a hero which you would expect from an actor playing Superman. His performance as Clark Kent was equally as great as his take on superman. Able to pull off the likable, but square "Kansas boy" to a T.


Kevin Spacey was outstanding as Lex Luthor. Managing to top Gene Hackman's performance as the  character. He was sarcastic and over the top. If I had one complaint about his performance its that he was so charismatic and ridiculous that it was hard to not like him to a degree.


Kate Bosworth stepping into the role of Lois Lane was a move which when I first saw the film 7 years ago didn't like. I thought that she just didn't have the personality for the character. After viewing it again now, my opinion has changed. She gave a solid performance in the role and had chemistry not only with Routh but even worked well with Spacy and James Marsden as her fiance.


Superman Returns isn't a film without its share of flaws. My biggest complaint was that it did get a few points of the origin wrong, such as a young Clark wearing glasses.  Also I will admit that at points the films pacing seemed to slow down and did lead to a few dull spots. Neither of these really hurt my enjoyment of the film though to be honest.


In my eyes the good really out weighed the bad in this film. It was able to achieve the directors goal in making a follow up to Superman 2 , specifically Donner's vision of the story. While that is its strength it is also its weakness as a lot has changed in the movie going audience over the last 30 years.  Most people that saw this film likely expected something more along the lines of Batman Begins with tons of action, where as this film was more story based with action mixed in.


Overall I enjoyed this film for what it was intended to be. After re watching the series for this week of reviews I can say this is an outstanding followup to the first two Donner films. It has a great story with action and heroics mixed in. While it certainly isn't a film for everyone, it is one id suggest giving a look.

Score 8/10

Trailer:








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