Monday, September 17, 2007
Not So Triumphant Return
Another Sunday afternoon and another chance to catch a 2006 film I didn't get to see in the theatres on HBO. This one was Superman Returns, the follow up of sorts to two classic films I love a lot - Superman the Movie and Superman II. Writer/producer Bryan Singer decides to drop from continuity films three and four and instead builds on a premise that Superman takes off for five years in space, only to return to find Lois Lane has moved on romantically and has a son.
Now, it was an okay film and it did pick up a lot of old cues from those first two films. In fact, some of the scenes seem down right familiar - from dialogue to pacing, and such. But, for me, it was not a great film. Yes, I know, this is sacriledgious statement coming from me, a life-long comic book fan. I just didn't enjoy it as much as I did those films from the 70's. Yes, the special effects capabilities of movie makers has jumped leaps and bounds since then, but this film just seemed to lack the same heart and passion those earlier films did.
I think this might be, in part, why I hadn't rushed out to the theatres to see this one nor did I feel too strong about picking up the DVD. I had heard reactions to the film as well as some of the plot beats and I realized something: this wasn't my Superman. My Superman wouldn't have taken off on an errand into space to satisfy his own curiosity about his roots - not when he had a woman who loved him (and he loved her) as well as a world that needed his super-assistance. The Kents didn't raise him with the type of values to abandon others for his own pursuits. That's why this film's whole set-up really had a false ring to it.
I guess I just prefer my heroes a bit more heroic is all.