In all my pre-move running around, I finally got to sit down and watch a movie. I saw the lavish, big-budget production "Man of Steel", the latest installment in the Superman saga.
I watched the old Superman tv series, "It's a bird! It's a plane! It's SUPERMAN!!!!!!!!!!!" I think I was about six when it first came on the air and like any good couch potato child of my generation I watched it and loved it. Although I have to say even then I thought Superman's suit was dopey looking. I mean it was in the pre-polyester days and looked to be made of cotton jersey, ill-fitting, uncomfortable, and probably made poor George Reeves perspire.
Then there was the 70s film versions with heart-throb Christopher Reeve. He was gorgeous. Of course I can't watch that series of films anymore knowing what his eventual fate would be. It is just too painful now. I've seen billboards in the last couple of years featuring him in his wheelchair and headlined "Super Man." He truly was an inspiration.
Then there was another film, "The Return of Superman" which hovers at the edge of my aging brain. I saw it in the theater, no less. But I don't remember when it came out. The actor was a one-shot Superman, but also very handsome, as I remember. Of course that one had the addition of Lois Lane and her son...that was a grown-up version of the franchise. They didn't make any more films in that incarnation.
And now we come to the extravaganza version of Superman, with all the bells and whistles (amazing special effects) of the world of CGI. Henry Cavill is truly beautiful as Kalel, aka Clark Kent. He does things to that spandex suit that make my old girl's heart go pitter pat...(and no, I'm not comparing myself to Aunt Pittypat in Gone With the Wind...I'm not that far gone yet!)
Henry Cavill has a physique that reminds me of Joe Manganiello of "True Blood" and "Magic Mike" fame. I know there are probably a few hundred guys built like that around the LA area, but I rarely see anybody who looks that way. I had to watch the movie twice because I got a tad distracted...
Amy Adams is one of my favorite actresses these days. She is so versatile, turning in wonderful performances in such diverse films as "The Muppets" and "The Fighter." She was magnificent in "Doubt" as a young nun confronted with a complex situation. She makes a beautiful but plucky Lois Lane. And unlike poor Margot Kidder's Lois Lane, Amy's is in on the secret. She knows who Clark Kent is, she's met his mom, for heaven's sake!
Michael Shannon makes a wonderful General Zod from Krypton, the part played by the great Terence Stamp in the 70s films. Shannon is one of those actors who sneak up on you. He is terrific at characterization. Currently, he is appearing on "Boardwalk Empire" as a man, horribly repressed, and steeped in contradictions. You know he's going to blow any minute. He's already leaking out a bit of steam. And then there was the indie film "Take Shelter" with Jessica Chastain. If you haven't caught that one on cable and like sci-fi/cerebral horror films, check it out. His performance is amazing in that one. You'll remember the ending for a long time to come.
Russell Crowe plays Jorel, Kalel's Krypton father. His role is much better written than Marlon Brando's was in the first series of films. Crowe's Jorel is a man of passion and purpose, even his artificial intelligence left to teach and protect his son.
Kevin Costner has a brief but important part as Jonathan Kent who finds the infant Kalel, adopts him and names him Clark. He dies a noble death of sacrifice.
Diane Lane plays Martha Kent, Clark's mom. When I first saw her in the film, she was artificially aged for the role. I thought she better run home and apply some of the anti-aging products she sells on tv. But she is shown as a younger woman later on in the film. Whew. I was afraid she really looked like the older version...but she gives a good performance.
I was happy to see Chris Meloni previously from "Law & Order: SVU" and "True Blood" in the film. He is such a commanding presence onscreen, he's always a pleasure to watch.
Lastly, but certainly not the least, we come to the biggest stars of the film, and I do mean biggest - the special effects. The final battle between Kalel and Zod rips up Metropolis and leaves it a huge pile of rubble.
The fight goes on awhile, but doesn't drag on because the special effects are so amazing.
This film is well worth viewing. It's fast-paced, exciting, and filled with attractive people. Plus, it is true to the Superman legend. What's not to like?
Lastly, please forgive me for not mentioning the series "Smallville." But I never really saw it. I've seen snippets on early morning TNT, when I've been half asleep.
Some exciting news for me...I am planning to start a second blog of free reads. It was suggested by one of my writing buds. I will post original short works of fiction that I wrote. However, I probably won't be doing that until after the holidays. So stay tuned.
I'll be thinking while I'm packing...