Saturday, July 01, 2006

I took a walk around the world to ease my troubled mind

We went to see Superman Returns.

On the positive side: Nice visual effects, everything in the movie looks very pretty. Superman catchphrases and references and homages to the earlier movies are included in a natural way.

Negative: Unimaginative script, in many ways a retread of the 1978 movie. When a novel plot element is introduced, it's generally abandoned and left unexplored or unexplained. Just about everything else is resolved in the least imaginative way possible. Unnecessarily slow, with far too many long shots of Clark doing nothing but moon over Lois or vice versa.

Specific gripes in the comments.


At 10:06 PM, July 01, 2006, Blogger Richard Mason said...

* Early on, the movie hints at a more sympathetic portrayal of Lex Luthor. He says he wants to be Prometheus bringing technology to mankind, not a selfish godling like Superman. (Cf. Syndrome in The Incredibles.) However this intriguing idea is completely cast aside and it turns out Lex wants to kill billions of people. What? Why? What does it gain him to kill billions of people? He couldn't think of any more productive plan or more popular approach to being the savior of mankind?

Incidentally, ingratiating himself with a dying widow seems like a kind of lame way for Lex to pick up walking-around money. Couldn't he just start a dotcom or something?

* "If this rocket launch is so important, why is it only being covered by one news network?" Good question, and here's another: why does Lois Lane bring up this issue as if it's going to be important, when in fact the question will never be answered and will never come up in the movie again?

* Lois doesn't really seem like a two-timing gal, so how does she not know who the kid's father is? How does the father not know, by the calendar, who the kid's father is? Maribeth suggested that the gestation period for a Kryptonian baby might be different than for a human baby. That's just the kind of creative plot twist that is utterly absent from this movie.

* It's stated that Kryptonian crystals form themselves out of water, like ice. Are Kryptonian crystals less dense than water? No, because they sink in water, they don't float. It would appear then that a Megafortress of Solitude forming in the ocean would not cause sea levels to rise and inundate the coasts; on the contrary, it would suck up water and cause sea levels to recede, sort of like a Kryptonian Greenland Ice Sheet.

At 10:07 PM, July 04, 2006, Blogger Joe said...

I'm trying to figure out why standing on Pangaea II made Superman all weak pretty much right away, but he could lift the damn thing and throw it into space--yes with consequences, but still. He could've at least put on a pair of gloves or something.

At 11:58 PM, July 06, 2006, Blogger Richard Mason said...

Yes, that bugged me much when watching it.

Shortly afterward I constructed the rationalization, which may or may not have support from what was on the screen, that he picked up Kryptonite Island plus a whole lot of rock underneath it that acted as a buffer. He had a certain amount of time before the Kryptonite crystals started poking through the bottom of the rock.

Perhaps this is what the writers intended... if not, it was a pretty terrible plot hole.


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