Man of Steel Review: A Darker Superman

New Point of View on DC's Biggest Superhero

Choosing Henry Cavill for the role of Clark Kent / Kal El / Superman in Man of Steel 2013 made a lot of people question Zack Snyder and Warmer Bros. choice. Prior to this surprising cast pick, Cavill didn't do nothing remarkable. He appeared in four seasons of the Tudors as a supporting character and had a few mediocre movies that were shiny on paper but failed to achieve something substantial (The Cold Light of Day, Immortals). 
henry cavill man of steel
Superman Henry Cavill
Cavill’s performance as Superman in Man of Steel was stiff and his character was distant at times, not allowing the audience to reconnect to their beloved super hero.

Some will take this Superman's characteristics to the negative direction but in fact this dark superman character showcased Kal El as a flawed individual that was fighting his entire life to fit in, living in constant fear of rejection by the humans. Cavill and Snyder made Man of Steel look as fragile as all the humans. The growth of this insecure Clark Kent character and his transformation to the Superman we all knew was a refreshing site to see. 

Superman always used his Clark Kent clumsy, shy and afraid of his own shadow persona as a cover for his real identity. In Man of Steel we saw something different we didn’t see in other Superman adaptation not from the movies and not in the TV Shows, the geeky Clark Kent character was truly a part of Superman. The difference was that Clark Kent was a phase that Kal El overgrew with time but he never forgot it and that is why he will use it when he will become the reporter in the Daily Planet for Man of Steel sequel Batman Vs. Superman film in 2015.
russell crowe jor el
Jor El with Kal El

The movie itself opened with Jor El who showed us around his Krypton. Like everything else that looked and felt a lot more different than our previous experiences with Superman adaptations. Krypton was nothing what we expected. It had strange animals, interesting architecture, futuristic battleships and breath taking breading lagoons. Russell Crowe gave us an opportunity to check out a new side of Jor El, the fighting side and the funny side mostly with Lois Lane (Amy Adams). The 2nd father figure of our hero, Kevin Costner reminded how great he can really be as an actor taking over the role of Jonathan Kent. He didn’t had much screen time but still managed to leave a positive impression with the audience. Michael Shannon was OK as General Zod, the reason he was Only OK wasn’t his fault. Zod's character in Man of Steel looked like a walking talking punching bag. Zod was supposedly genetically engineered to be this great warrior but in fact he got his ass whooped once by Jor El, a guy who was genetically engineered to be a geek (scientist) and the 2nd (and 3rd) time by Superman himself. Although Kal El never trained to be a warrior he possessed the Kryptonion DNA of all its habitants and that is the best explanation I have for how Superman wiped the floor with Ursa, Non and Zod himself during the film.

During the entire film we were wondering how exactly Superman is going to prevail over his fellow Kryptonians. After all they are practically all unkillable. We did see that Superman is not immune to everything and if he gets hit by a train it does hurt a bit. 

lois lane man of steel
man of steel superman and lois lane
The black hall angle did its job getting rid of Zod's army but it felt an easy and a weak way out by Snyder. The neck snapping at the end felt like a complete overkill because again it felt too simple way to finish the film. Zod's attempt of killing the innocent people towards the end (who apparently didn’t want to run to the other direction) was not a very good scene. While Superman was conflicting with himself to kill or not to kill Zod, the audience didn’t really get it. I didn’t know that he was preparing to snap Zod's neck; I just didn’t get the scene because I expected something a lot bigger than that.

The fact that we didn’t get a post credits teaser scene was disappointing, nobody likes sitting for 10 minutes staring at the credits waiting for them to end, expecting something great to happen and then when the credits end and nothing happens you feel like a complete fool. Nobody likes to feel like that.

Man of Steel 2013 is most definitely a very cool movie, the fact that the main character was so distant and hard to connect with made this film so appealing and made Henry Cavill's Man Of Steel stand out from the crowd of super hero films. It was hard to like this Superman during the beginning of the film but as the plot progressed Zack Snyder's Man of Steel grew on you and that was all we needed in the end.

Man Of Steel DVD

Man of Steel (Blu-ray 3D + Blu-ray + DVD +UltraViolet Combo Pack)
photo credit: HenryCavillandtheCavillry via photopin cc
photo credit: HenryCavillandtheCavillry via photopin cc
photo credit: HenryCavillandtheCavillry via photopin cc

About Sasha Shapiro

Sasha is the founder and editor of Cool Reviews Rule. He is very passionate about Movies, TV Shows and some Books. His favorite genres are: Action, Fantasy, History, Horror, Sci-fi and Adventure.
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  1. Great movie, one of this year's best.

  2. Man of Steel was definitely good, not a movie to remember but entertaining enough.

  3. Good review. I thought the film was great as well. I enjoyed the dark direction the producers, writers and director took with the new Superman film. The only thing I felt was missing and I consider it necessary, was not including his famous theme song. They could have at least played it at the end of the film. I am hoping this will lead to a Death and Return of Superman film after they get done with the Batman/Superman sequel. Come check out my movie review website. Eradicator Reviews

  4. I think this Superman's reboot wanted to distinguish itself from the 70's movies therefor the theme song was not included and wont be in the next movies.