Can Man of Steel Live Up To My Expectations?


poster-manofsteelMan of Steel is almost upon us.

It has been a long wait, one that has raised my expectations beyond Krypton.

How could I not expect a great movie? Let’s look at the facts. Produced by Christopher Nolan, who is responsible for some of the best movies in the last decade. Batman Begins. Memento. The Dark Knight. Inception. Great movies with fantastic acting and visual effects. They also have great writing, the responsiblity of David S. Goyer, who also wrote the script for Man of Steel. Look at Zack Snyder, who is directing. He has done some of the best action sequences ever created. 300. Watchmen. Even Sucker Punch was pretty to look at.

Add the acting abilities of Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Diane Lane, Kevin Costner, Laurence Fishburne, and Russell Crowe. Fantastic cast.

Then add music by Hans Zimmer, one of my favorite composers.

It was given an estimated budget of $225,000,000.

No small chunk of change.

But my high expectations go beyond everything I’ve just written. I have wanted a real Superman movie for decades. I loved Christopher Reeve’s Superman: The Movie. As a kid, I truly believed a man could fly. And Superman II has a warm place in my heart as well, even though Richard Donner could not complete his version of the film. I had hoped with Superman Returns that I’d have a movie that met and/or exceeded those earlier films.

Instead, Superman Returns was an almost complete travesty. The opening airplane sequence was riveting and fully realized. I loved it. But the rest of the movie? Sloppy writing. No attention to canon. The writers took the characters to places they should not have gone on film. And not enough action. Not to mention the movie rehashed many of the elements in Superman: The Movie. Even the average movie goer hated the film. Those of us who love Superman found it appalling.

What will we get with Man of Steel? Trailers and TV spots of the film seem promising. Lots of action. Some great scenes between Superman and Lois. A very real threat to the planet. And some great dialog (“My son was in the bus. He saw what Clark did.”).

I think the ultimate key to the entire question is Christopher Nolan. How much was he involved? If he brought his desire for perfection and guided Snyder, it could be great.

If Snyder didn’t get direction from Nolan, who I consider to be the finest director working right now?

It could be one mess of a movie, all action and no heart.

And Superman should be heart-filled action.

We will find out later this week when Man of Steel opens around the world.

What do you think?