Superman II: Throwback Movie Review

You made us believe a man can fly, now show us what he can do.Superman2

Writers: Mario PuzoDavid NewmanLeslie NewmanTom Mankiewicz Director: Richard Donner Run Time: 127 Mins
superman-2-560The second chapter and it’s pretty enjoyable. The first film dealt with the origin story but gave a side story intended to be told in Superman Two. One issue with this picture was that Richard Donner was fired and the new director had basically reshot everything Donner had intended to tell for his movie. But thanks to Ms. Kidder informing people via an interview that Donner had shot enough footage to basically edit a feature-length movie, fans encouraged WB to release his vision for Superman two.That’s all for another review.

Superman One is probably most loved for having an epic shooting style and being able to have audiences young and old alike, believe that a man could fly largely in part to the performance of Christopher Reeves. So the challenge here was how do we keep the movie fresh? With bringing on a new director, one of the first things he did, as I said, was reshoot the movie and even edited out Marlon Brando. Another key thing was he gave someone who Superman could punch (well the story did).supeszod

I’d like to believe until Superman 2, all other live-action iterations, were just Superman taking on regular Joes who he couldn’t really unleash on.  Having such a dictator like foe from his home planet, really gave Supes an opportunity to show Metropolis and the world, that he was on the side of Earth, and its freedoms. Zod is a character so much like Clark had he had terrible parents and there’s a good contrast in the movie but due to its very light nature it’s easily missed.

That’s one of the best things about the Chris Reeves Superman movies, they’re all very heart warming and easy. Many regard this as the best Superman movie due to that aspect as well as the Metropolis showdown. There’s a scene with Lois and Clark (that would later be used as the back bone of “Superman Returns”) where the two have coitus but because of the nature of the story, characters and the acting it’s only implied that it happens. Childish in a way, yes, but at the age of 6 would you really want to see Superman have sex? Probably not.

A questionable move by the director to avoid using the epic style of Superman One instead moving more towards the look and feel of a comic book – The best way to describe it is the scenes where the story takes place in Niagara Falls. In comic books a lot of the panels involve “tight shots” that have a lot of people and objects neatly woven for the story aspect or just artist choice, this comes off very well here. Ignoring the time period of this movie, the Metropolis battle scene is another type of comic book style cinematography. It’s edited a little quicker, has a bit more of a flat angle and the random dialogue during the fight is spot on for a comic book.

Bottom Line: Its fun to relive this Superman film. It’s regarded as the last best film (sadly… But in a good way) in the Superman franchise. It isn’t the best one, but for what it is, it does serve its purpose and is still fun to watch now and worthy to see. If looking for back story on Zod however, you’re better off watching season five and nine of Smallville

Ratings for all movies will now be out of ten

  • Overall rating of the movie: 8.5 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 5 out of 10,
  • Editing: 5 out of 10,
  • Audio: 8 out of 10,
  • Acting: 8 out of 10,

PS. there’s some weird powers used here, this may help you understand why. Got to love the silver age of comics.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

Superman: The Movie (1978) Throwback Review

Distant planet called Krypton… Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound…..

It’s Superman

Director: Richard Donner Writers: Mario PuzoDavid NewmanLeslie NewmanRobert Benton Run Time: 143

Jor-El… Marlon Brando
Lex Luthor Gene Hackman
Superman-Clark Kent… Christopher Reeve
Jonathan Kent… Glenn Ford
Lois Lane… Margot Kidder
Perry White… Jackie Cooper
Jimmy Olsen… Marc McClure
Otis… Ned Beatty
Eve Tessmacher… Valerie Perrine

superman 1978

Some of the best things about the movie are how it is shot, the props, the sets and of course having audiences believing a man could fly. From the opening scene, to the trial of Zod, to Clark racing a train right up to the Superman movie send off, it’s all kind of majestic in its delivery. As kids, most of us have seen this film and we probably thought this was real. As I re-watched this movie I couldn’t help but feel like the four-year old me again singing the songs. Honestly, John Williams deserves all the awards in the world. His influence in cinema may be underappreciated but the truth (proof) is in his work.

This movie is a classic.

superman the movieNow you may have wondered why I didn’t say a “timeless classic”, that’s because it is dated. Superman these days isn’t dating Lois. He’s shagging Wonder Woman, has armor, has two confusing comics and is currently being played by Henry Cavalli In Man Of Steel. The sets, style of cinematography and even how Mr. Reeves portrayed Clark is a bit out dated. It’s not the worst, but now it sort of doesn’t hold up. I understand the exact reason why, and it’s clear when one gets to the part where Superman is interviewed by Lois Lane at her apartment. To that point you should understand the importance of Clark’s mannerisms versus when he’s Superman. There’s even a nice contrast between Margot Kidder’s choices of character mannerisms when dealing with clark and dealing with Superman. That is probably the best acting for those two together. The best acted scene however is when Lois dies.superman--the-movie

It’s actually my all time favourite movie moment of all time. The noticeable silence, the cinematography, the greatest reaction to a death (I’ve ever seen) in a movie. The entire movie’s cast kind of has a theatrical feel to it. Even Chris Reeves has a strong theatre background. So when he got pissed that he couldn’t save Lois, and he says the “no’s” without any sound, only to have him yell at the heavens.

Yeah that’s epic (with today’s effects we may have seen him accidentally cause a shockwave of some sort). Add the fact that while he was still living on the farm, he couldn’t save his father it just has a nice added weight to it by the time that scene comes. Then the reversal of time via reverse globe spinning and all that confusion happens.

Honestly as far as origin stories go, this may have been one of the best – especially with the passing of time to the point where Clark goes to train with Jor-El (Smallville fans, Season 5). From early infant, to man, we don’t see Superman for the first hour. And then, when see Superman in action it’s pretty accurate to almost every origin of Superman I’ve seen, outside of “Earth One”. Superman is always first seen saving a plane or some kind of air craft.

The reason to fault this movie is in its own greatness. This story would basically be a Superman Earth 2 story from before “Crisis on Infinite Earths” got rid of that realm to smooth out their continuity. What that means to everyone else is that, the world of this Superman is yes, set in New York City, but it’s not a realistic NYC. It’s a world where he’s loved with no reason. He only saved Lois because well, it’s Lois. Towards the end, it does make sense but it’s hard to entirely accept.

Christopher_Reeve_TributeBottom line: this is one of those movies all kids should see or anyone really. But I know not everyone will. The movie is very light and kid friendly but still has a lot that adults can take from it, cinema students included.

Ratings for all movies will now be out of ten

  • Overall rating of the movie: 8 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 7 out of 10,
  • Editing: 5 out of 10,
  • Audio: 8 out of 10,
  • Acting: 8 out of 10,

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW