Why I Thought Man Of Steel Was Not A Great Movie

by Jay Cochran
June 16, 2013
This is a **SPOILER** heavy article so if you havenít seen the movie yet, you should hold off on reading this.


Here is a breakdown of the reasons why I donít think Man Of Steel is a great movie. Now keep in mind I didnít say Man Of Steel is a bad movie, simply stated that itís not great. If you read my review of it, you will see I gave it a C which is an average grade. That is what Man Of Steel is, and average action-packed popcorn flick full of visual effects and action but short on story.

I have seen the movie twice now. From top to bottom, this is a rundown of the issues I have with it. Keep in mind that one or two things probably wouldnít bother me so much and some of my issues admittedly do border on nitpicking. After all, this is a movie about superheroes so some boundaries of reality are going to be pushed. However, when you add them all together, I think these things really start to take a toll on the quality of the film.

My first issue with the movie is the punishment of Zod and his men for the staged government coup. At this point in the movie, everyone seems to realize that the planet is only days away from destroying itself. So why would you take the time to invoke a punishment that involves sending the prisoners off the very planet where everyone is about to die? A more fitting punishment would be to keep them right there on Krypton. Before anyone tries to say the leaders still donít believe the planet it is doomed, I ask if we are supposed to believe that an advanced civilization like Krypton canít tell a planet is days away from imploding? Really? In the original Superman movie, they sent Zod and company away before the whole planet self-destructing came up so it made sense. Not in this version. Of course if Zod had not been sent off planet, then he would be dead along with the rest of Krypton and that wouldnít have made a very interesting movie, right?

On to problem number 2. Clark used his powers so often in the open, and no one ever took real notice of it. Really? Yeah, Peteís mom comes over for a little talk but you mean to tell me thatís it?

Problem 3. Now this isnít really a logic flaw, as I could see a father wanting to protect a secret like Clarkís at all cost. This is just something that really doesnít fit the character. Jonathan Kent tells Clark he should have considered letting the people on the school bus die. I mean this is the guy shaping Clarkís character, and heís telling Clark his own secret is more important than peopleís lives.

This leads me to problem 4. Again, itís out of character behavior rather than a logic flaw. Clark has basically been disobeying his father on the one issue of using his powers to save people in the public eye his entire life, so the one time he decides to obey his father is to watch him die in front of himself and his mother in a tornado? Really????

Problem 5. Getting back to actual logic flaws. Itís established that the Kryptonians have no powers in the Krypton environment. So when the Kryptonians are wearing these environmental suits to protect them from Earthís atmosphere, isnít it logical to think they wouldnít have super powers? Yet throughout the entire movie except towards the end when Zod sheds the suit, all the Kryptonianís demonstrate having powers. These guys should not be able to go toe to toe with Superman, or are able to withstand getting shot or blown to bits by rockets, yet they do.

Problem 6. This one even Zod points out in the movie. Zod and his army are trained military personnel. Theyíve been bred to be warriors and fighters. Clark has not. He just learned how to fly and was never trained to fight. So how is it Superman is able to outfight all these guys throughout the movie, especially Zod at the end? Just blind dumb luck I guess???

Problem 7. The falling buildings in Metropolis, most notably the one that almost falls on Perry and company. We live in a post-9/11 era where we have seen actual skyscrapers come toppling down in a major city, I found these scenes to be incredibly fake and unbelievable. First that you could just outrun it seems totally fake to me, but that all you would end up with is a little dust on you just seems completely farfetched. I know this was done mostly for effect and this movie certainly isnít the first one to do this, but I think they went way over the top.

Problem 8. I probably shouldnít even mention how the whole opening a black hole singularity in Earthís atmosphere would probably have done more damage to the planet than the terraforming or Zod? Moving on.

Problem 9. The ending outcome with the final battle between Zod and Superman. Okay, I already mentioned above how it seems odd that someone who has never been trained to fight could beat someone who was born to fight but letís talk about the end. I wonít even mention that it seems odd that the people about to get fried by Zodís eyebeams couldnít have run forward and away from them; after all they may be frozen in fear. Also, we can ignore how that Superman couldnít throw Zod, stick his hand in front of Zodís eyes, or move him in any way. Hell, letís not even mention that when he breaks Zodís neck he twists the head towards the people (moving the searing eyebeams directly across their bodies). Although some people are upset that Superman would kill, I donít consider that a problem if it was the only option to save innocent lives. After all, no one seemed to have a problem when Superman let a non-powered Zod fall to his death in Superman II. My question is, how do you break the neck of someone who is indestructible? I mean this really is the best you could come up with?

Final Problem. How the heck are we to believe that no one could find out who Clark Kent is? It took no time at all for Lois to figure it out (she canít be the only crack reporter in the world). While we are talking about Lois, how is she not going to be a marked woman for all of Supermanís enemies since it was revealed to the world that she knows who Superman is? If by some chance youíre too dumb to figure it out yourself, then the first person to interrogate is Lois. I am really confused why the Government seems unable to figure it out. Especially after Superman tells them he grew up in Kansas and the trajectory of Zodís ship leads straight to a small farm in Smallville (Kansas!) after capturing Superman. Maybe I shouldnít be as concerned with the governmentís ability to track me if they couldnít figure out where Superman grew up.

I donít know. I suppose you could explain some of these things if you really wanted to. When you add them all up, a weak plot starts to emerge - especially when you look at how good the first two Nolan Batman movies were or the first Iron Man and Avengers movies. This just seems sloppy. I might be more forgiving if this was a sequel like The Dark Knight Rises or Iron Man 2 and 3, but this is the second time Warner Bros. has tried to relaunch Superman in recent years not to mention this was supposed to be the movie that kicks off the big DC Movie-verse. This movie should and could have been so much more.


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