“Man of Steel” isn’t quite super

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It was expected that “Man of Steel” would be a visual feast for the eyes, knowing that director Zack Snyder (“300,” “Watchmen”) would be at the helm. It was even more promising when it was announced that Christopher Nolan, the man who helped reboot the Batman movie franchise, would have a hand in rebooting another iconic DC character. Despite all of this, “Man of Steel” is a disappointing film that establishes some interesting ideas to the Superman mythology, but only to fail to follow up on those ideas to make this movie more than just another “Superman” film.

Before the planet of Krypton is destroyed, Jor-El (Russell Crowe) sends his only son Kal-El to Earth. 33 years later, Clark Kent/Kal-El (Henry Cavill) is going around the county, saving people whenever trouble approaches while maintaining a low profile. Meanwhile, surviving Kryptonian General Zod (Michael Shannon) plans to wipe out mankind in order to resurrect his home planet. With Zod approaching Earth with malicious intent, it is up to Kal-El to protect humanity from a being that is just as powerful as he is.

“Man of Steel” features fantastic technical work from production design to the visual effects, especially with Snyder’s unique interpretation of Krypton, a planet that has bizarre alien creatures and technology beyond human comprehension.

Cavill is the third actor (after Christopher Reeves and Brandon Routh) to don the familiar cape and costume on the silver screen. He does a great job bring this character to life as a man who is afraid to disclose his true identity to the world, fearing the reaction that he will receive. Amy Adams does the best she can to bring a realistic and down-to-earth approach to Lois Lane. Michael Shannon is absolutely menacing as Zod, while Kevin Costner and Russell Crowe are effective as Clark’s adopted and biological fathers.

“Man of Steel” makes up for “Superman Returns” lack of action with tons of spectacular action sequences including a showdown in Smallville and Superman’s climactic showdown with Zod. However, the action sequences literally loses its focus as Snyder’s habit of  zooming in on one shot makes the action scenes makes it more of a dizzying experience instead of dazzling one. There are also a couple of moments where certain action scenes seemed like a direct rip-off from other more superior comic book movies like “Thor” and “The Avengers”

“Man of Steel” is written by David S. Goyer, the man who help craft Nolan’s “Batman” trilogy. Credited as the sole writer for this film, Goyer’s script is surprisingly weak with a convoluted story and unmemorable dialogue. Although the decision to alternate between the past and present was interesting at first, it eventually becomes tiresome by the time we find out what happens to Pa Kent. When Zod unveils his diabolical plot to Superman, the scene is compiled of jargon that makes his seemingly illogical evil plan plot incomprehensible.

“Man of Steel” is the biggest disappointment of the summer. Instead of a fresh reboot on a superhero that many care for, we get a movie that feels like just another ordinary superhero movie that is all style, but not substance.

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